A few weeks spent going through twenty years worth of things stored in my basement, made me realize just how much crap we humans like to hang on to. I did come across a few salvageable items like these spiral obelisks, which were given a second life just in time for Halloween. A fresh coat of paint, a selection of skulls, and a nice assortment of bloody human parts did the trick.
Tag Archives: arts and crafts
I couldn’t help but notice all the Halloween themed bottles at the liquor store, and since it didn’t take much enticement on my part, I ended up with a nice little collection to display. There’s not a whole lot of work involved other than relaxing, having a few drinks and lightly embellishing the bottles with a few decorations. That part, the kids can help with.
Gerhardt Richter recently had a phenomenal show at the Pompidou Centre in Paris. This German artist has explored and mastered many styles including abstract, pop art, minimalism and photo-realism, where he creates paintings derived from photographs and adds his trademark blur. His work sells for prices higher than any other living artist, and is considered by many to be the most important working artist today. I loved his series of lacquer-on-glass paintings, and thought it would be interesting for kids to explore the idea of creating layers on plexiglass.
Sand casting is such a great idea, and has become a popular beach activity for kids. Tons of blogs have been showing great examples of hands, feet, shells, you name it. But what really caught my eye was a YouTube video by Gary Einloth. I liked his idea of using tools to prod deeply into the sand, and thought some interesting miniature landscapes could be created using this method.
Fibre art can take on many forms like weaving, quilting, collage and sculpture, and is best defined as “any artistic presentation with fibre as the main medium.” That leaves things pretty open, so I decided to make these collages monochromatic so kids could work on their colours. I also included bubble wrap, the first thing I found lying in my recycling junk box. It turns out to be really easy to sew, adds great texture, and works nicely with any colour grouping. And if the urge to pop becomes overwhelming, virtual bubble wrap is the place for you.
“Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.” Michelangelo
Plaster of Paris makes it easy to create small blocks of “stone” that little sculptors can carve. It’s also a wonderful way to have children imagine a three dimensional shape inside a block, and bring it to life. As they carve and scratch away at the plaster, they’ll see their idea slowly emerge and evolve.
Years ago, one of my school assignments involved creating a collection of textile designs, and painting one of them on a household object. I chose a wine bottle because it was readily available, and surely considered a household object in France! This time, I thought a graffiti theme would be fun, and included the image above to show you my source of inspiration, which I found painted on a garage door. If lurking about back alleys isn’t your thing, the internet is filled with great images for you to consider using.
Don’t you love ambiguous sentences. When this one accidentally happened, I started looking them up on the internet and had a really good laugh. Here were some of the better ones: The children are ready for eating. Milk drinkers are turning to powder. Stolen painting found by tree. Iraqi head seeks arms. Now back to rubber cement…
It’s always great when you can look beyond a product’s original purpose, and see it’s potential in other areas. Thanks to a couple of great websites (The Artful Parent and The Disarranged Studio), I now know rubber cement is much more than just an adhesive I like to pick at and pull once it’s dried and done its job. It can be used as a resist, allowing you to create batik-like drawings, which magically reveal themselves once the rubber cement is removed.
Torn paper collages are made using small pieces of paper which are glued onto a surface to create an image. In this case we’ll be making portraits using old magazines, which will provide the colourful palette you’ll need. You can also go black and white by using newspapers. The image children select for inspiration will help with some basic direction in colours, composition and proportions, but they shouldn’t expect to duplicate it. It’s simply to provide a starting point, which they can then take in any direction.