My favourite Starman died on January 10th, and being a huge fan, it left me feeling rather sad. He was an extraordinary, innovative talent, driven by a healthy dose of curiosity and foresight, ensuring he was always ahead of the game, with an eye to the future. He left his unique mark on music, art, and fashion, and shared with us his fascination for space and planets, which he made reference to throughout his career.
If your children are young, it’s quite likely David Bowie is not on their radar, so consider this a great way to explore the solar system and its wonderful planets… while you play Starman or Space Oddity in the background! For those who loved Bowie’s work, why not make him a glow-in-the-dark planet to go along with the lightening-bolt Bowie-asterism, as a tribute to him.
- styrofoam balls
- acrylic paint and brushes
- glow-in-the-dark paint
- drying base eg. egg carton, styrofoam block, floral block
- fishing line
- ceiling hook
- pin hook for hanging styrofoam balls
- white glue
1. If you’re making all eight planets, make sure you have styrofoam balls in a variety of sizes. If you’re just making an imaginary planet as a tribute to Bowie, one ball will do it. Provide kids with images of the planets so they can learn about them and determine which colours and sizes they will use.
2.Add a pin hook to each ball, using a bit of white glue on the stem before pressing it in, to help secure it. At the opposite end of the ball, insert a skewer. This will make holding the ball easier when painting.
3.Paint the styrofoam balls using a variety of techniques including rolling the ball in paint, and using sponges to blend colours into each other, providing textured effects.
4.Stick the skewered balls onto a base to dry. Egg cartons, floral blocks, and styrofoam bases work well.
5.Once dry, add glow-in-the-dark paint. I found squeezing it directly onto the ball worked well. With the ball still on a skewer, move it around in your hand while drizzling the paint onto the surface. You can also use a brush to apply it. Allow to dry on a base.
6.Remove skewer and touch up hole with paint if necessary. Cut some fishing line and feed it through the pin hook. Tie a knot. Make a loop at the other end and attach to a ceiling hook. This might be just what you need to entice kids to go to bed so they can watch their glow-in-the-dark planets hanging from their bedroom ceiling, slowly lulling them to sleep, or igniting thoughts of cosmic travel.