Inside Look: Warriors Domino Construction
The Warriors recently teamed up with domino artists Steve Price and Alex Huang to construct a chain-reaction sequence that features some of the team’s biggest matchups and events of the 2017-18 season. So, ever wonder how a project like this comes together? Following the final tumble, Price and Huang sat down to walk us through the building process.
Price, who was an America’s Got Talent quarter-finalist and holds the Guinness World Record for the largest domino circle field with a tumble of 76,017 dominoes, has spent years perfecting his chain reaction machines from concept, to design, to construction. “The first step,” he said when discussing project builds for other companies, “is to get an idea of how large they want the project to be.” Square footage, the time it takes to complete the tumble, or the number of dominoes desired all go into Price’s design plan.
Using Photoshop, an overhead view of the setup is created so he can map out the connecting lines and determine exactly how each element will fall. Then, it’s time to turn logos into domino fields utilizing a program that Price created. “It gives you instructions on how to build, what colors to use and how to place [the dominoes],” he added.
Once the plan was set, they got to work piecing together 15,000 dominoes. “Steve and I built for two days, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day,” said Huang.
“We start with the taller projects,” Price said of the construction process, “If you were to make a mistake when building those and they fall, then it spreads out.” The ripple effect here could knock out more than one component of the bigger picture if you’re not working with plenty of room around you. “We try to work either from the back to the front, or from the center outwards,” he added, noting that it’s far more difficult to navigate around domino fields that are already standing.
To ease the process of setting up individual tiles, domino artists have developed templates, made from Legos to look like a comb, that allow you to slide a line into the field with ease. This results in perfectly straight lines and helps an artist build more quickly. “Rectangles are really easy to build,” said Huang. This method was used to construct all of the logos shown throughout the video, except the Warriors logo.
“The circle is actually a little more difficult because you have to measure out each row, as they’re different lengths,” Huang, who built the Dubs’ logo, noted after the project had been completed. “You’ve got to measure out the arc of the circle and be much more careful about the placement of each domino.”
While the rectangular logo fields were constructed using the field templates, the 3-dimenstional structures and curved lines were all built one-by-one, by hand.
“This happens a lot for Steve, but this is the first time I’ve built for a company,” said Huang, a San Jose native who stumbled upon the domino world via YouTube in 2011; he has been building alongside Price and other artists ever since.
After approximately 36 hours of setup, Price and Huang knocked it all down for the cameras. You can watch the complete tumble sequence below.