Thaumatrope



A thaumatrope means "turning marvel" or "wonder turner" and consists of a paper disc attached to two pieces of string. When the strings are twirled between your fingers, the two images on each side of the disk appear to be one.
external image thaumatrope.gif1825: John Ayrton Paris, an English doctor, invents and produces a commercial version of his Thaumatrope, in which two images on either side of a disc of card threaded with string appear to merge when spun quickly. Although the thaumatrope does not produce animated scenes, it relies on the same persistence of vision principle that other optical toys use to create illusions of motion. Most pairs of thaumatrope images were pictures that did not imply motion, such as running animals or dancing people. A thaumatrope could only take two images and merge them, essentially creating one still image from two. The phenakistoscope was a great improvement on the thaumatrope, creating one moving image from several stills, and became the first optical toy to create a true illusion of motion.
Source: http://www.terramedia.co.uk/Chronomedia/years/1825-1829.htm
external image placeholder?w=288&h=152

How to create a Thaumatrope: Rubber Band Method

1) Cut two pieces of paper into a circular shape of the same size as the board piece. Draw a picture on each piece of paper. In this example, there is a cat on one piece and a teardrop and fishbowl on the other piece.
external image placeholder?w=NaN&h=NaN
2) Stick the pictures on the front and the back of the board piece using glue. Be careful about the placement of the pictures in relation to each other. It must align precisely with where you want the moving image to appear on the front image.
To test and make sure that the pictures align correctly, you can attach them with a paper clip and flip the card rapidly a few times to get an idea for how they will match up.
external image placeholder?w=NaN&h=NaN
3) Insert a rubber band in each of the two holes. Put one end of the rubber band a little bit through the hole, then pull the rest of the rubber band through the loop that you just pushed through the hole, and pull tight.
external image placeholder?w=NaN&h=NaN
4) Wind up both rubber bands. Hold a rubber band in each hand and have someone flip the card over and over until totally twisted tight. Pull each rubber band apart quickly and the card will start spinning.
Source: http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Thaumatrope