Wednesday, May 8, 2013
To make this little notebook I started with a heavy sheet of grey chipboard, just slightly larger than a sheet of copy paper, and some brightly colored acrylic paints. I poured paint directly onto the chipboard and used a piece of corrugated cardboard, cut along the top with pinking sheers, to draw wavy lines through the paint. When the paint dried I folded the sheet in half, folded sheets of copy paper in half, and stapled the copy paper inside my painted cover to make the notebook. Very simple!
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Making paste paper is similar to finger painting in that you begin with a surface that is covered with paint and then you make marks in the paint with you fingers revealing the white of the paper. There is something extremely relaxing about manipulating the paint for children and even adults. With paste paper you don not need the shiny finger painting paper or the little jars of paints, and you generally make the marks with a tool as opposed to your finger. One of the things that I like about the paste paper is that you make the colored paste yourself and you can use sheets of standard drawing paper.
The recipe that I used for the paste I found at Art For Small Hands. This site is an excellent resource for art projects with children. Not only does Julie Voight have excellent step-by-step instructions and background information about the process, but she has wise suggestions about approaches to the art process when working with children. I modified her recipe slightly in that I used acrylic paint to add color instead or tempera.
Recipe for Paste Paper
4 Tablespoons Rice Flour
3 Tablespoons Wheat Flour
3 Cups Water
1/2 Teaspoon glycerin (available at the drugstore)
1 Teaspoon dishwashing detergent.
Place flours in saucepan and whisk together with one cup of the water. Over medium heat begin to cook the paste until it thickens. Add additional water 1/2 cup at a time. The paste is ready when it resembles pudding. Cool in the refrigerator. Add acrylic paint. Mix with spoon.
Directions for Making Paper
Gather or make some tools to create marks in your paper. I used corrugated cardboard and cut along one edge with pinking sheers (might not be so good for the blade). You can use forks or combs as tools, also. Apply the paint to cover the entire sheet of paper with a brush. I used an old house painting brush. Make marks or patterns with your tools. The paper will buckle, so use an iron to flatten once it dries.
Monday, April 22, 2013
The first project that I plan to introduce in a workshop on book arts for very small children this afternoon is a simple pop up book. They will begin with a sheet of white paper folded into an accordion so that they have four pages or two double page spreads. The children will have an assortment of decorative papers that can be cut and folded. Glue sticks will be used to adhere the ends of the paper to the pages of the book. One end should be glued to each side of the double page spread. In order for your book to close flat one fold in your paper strip should line up up with the fold in the double page spread. This is actually easier to do than it is to describe!
I printed covers that they can color and add their names to.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
To create a pattern that evokes the look of an animal print, try making your own stamps. These shapes were cut from craft foam and glued to scraps of wood to resemble the hide of a giraffe and that of a zebra. A sepia ink pad was used for the giraffe and a black ink pad for the zebra. Stamps can be used on cloth as well as paper and work well if you're making animal masks.
Saturday, April 13, 2013
Monoprints are fun to make since they always yield some unexpected results. I used plexiglass for my printing plate, but a sheet of acetate or a piece of glass from a picture frame work just as well. Simply roll water-based printing ink onto the plexi with a brayer. I used the eraser end of a pencil to draw the marks directly into the ink. Then I pressed a sheet of paper on top of the drawing to make my print. With the remaining ink on the plate I made a fainter print. You can also layer prints on top of each other.
Friday, March 15, 2013
I've seen some gorgeous photos of garlands made from transformed water bottles online and decided to try it with a group of children. It's best to use the lightest weight bottles that you can find so that they are easier to cut. I used scissors to cut off the bottom couple of inches. I cut the sides into strips to mimic flower petals. We tried painting some of the flowers with acrylic paint, but it prevented the light from shining through. Most of the bottles pictured are decorated with permanent markers. I had read that bottles could be joined together with a glue gun, but I was not successful in making them stick together. At first I couldn't figure out how to string them with straws between the flowers so that they stayed separated. I came up with the idea of stringing circles of heavy paper in between the straws and the bottle caps. You can see this in the photos.
If you can find a place to hang them with a good light source they cast beautiful reflections.