When it’s time for some rainy-day after school fun, sit down at the table for another craft that doubles as an activity.
Using heavyweight paper, we outlined our designs in black ink then filled it in with watercolor. Starting with a flat piece of paper we designed the yard, fully equipped with toys and a bowl.
Draw a dog, paint, dry and then cut it out. Use another small strip of paper to construct a stand to prop your puppy up, and glue it into place. When everything is dry have fun with the kids setting up house and playing pretend. We brought out the Playmobile toys for added fun and hours of entertainment.
This project was inspired by a recent trip to the American Folk Art Museum (gift shop) in New York City. This simple-looking project is not as easy as it appears. Sure, it’s just folded paper with a little glue, but there are actually more steps and time involved than you might assume.
1. Begin by pulling a magazine out of the recycle bin. I wanted a very large paper wheel so I used a W magazine. Rip off the front cover of the magazine and then carefully peel out a few pages. Trim the rippled gluey edge so the pages are straight.
2. Fold the page lengthwise in a back and forth pattern, like an accordion. My folds were about 1/2 inch thick, and, to make the creases crisp, I ran a credit card over the seam of each fold.
3. Fold each accordion folded magazine sheet in half as seen in the picture above. For my circle I used 18 pages.
4. Apply a sparse dab of glue along the seam of the fold, and nest another piece inside of it. Repeat with one more piece (so that three pieces are nested together) and then clip with a paper clip while the glue dries.
Tip: Do the gluing work on top of a sheet of wax or parchment paper to avoid the glue sticking to surfaces while it dries.
5. When glue is fully dry, remove paper clips and assemble into a large circle with all tips coming together in the center. Squeeze some glue into the center of the circle, allow to dry and then flip it over and do the same on the other side.
6. After the center glue has dried join the separate side pieces together with glue. If you would like to hang your circle you can glue a piece of string into one of the side seams, or use a hole puncher to pop a hole for hanging when the project has dried completely.
This may come as a surprise since I don’t post a lot about either.. but two of my favorite mediums to dabble in are linocut printing and india ink. Here’s a quickie run-through of my latest project:
(click on the pics for more detail)
Please keep in mind that this is only an overview of linocut printing, and that any time you plan on using a sharp tool, it is important to observe proper safety precautions. The instructables website has a nice piece on linocut printing and safety here.
And for further reading and inspiration be sure to check out this impressive online exhibit of Picasso’s prints by MOMA. As usual, they have outdone themselves with another amazing interactive web presentation!! Love. Love.
Get in the Valentine’s mood and start spreading the love a little earlier this year with a project that ends in a gift. While this is a photo project, moreover, it’s a way to leave a little heart in some unexpected places.
Shown, are just a sampling of outtakes from my Hearts Project. To get started all you need is brightly colored paper, scissors, tape, a digital camera, and the guts to look ridiculous in front other people for a few moments.
The adventure began by cutting out a purse-full of hot pink hearts, grabbing my camera, some silver duct tape (for lastablitiy) and going about my week as usual. The only difference being that, like cupid, I left a little love everywhere I went… and photographed it!! Sometimes it was not possible or appropriate, but whenever I could I left the heart where it was shot, like tiny pink remanence of joy for whomever might cross its path.
There are oodles of things to do with the pics when you’re done, but if you’re want to really go for it, I suggest transforming your digital collection into a beautifully bound book to present to your Valentine. Both Kodak Gallery and iPhoto are great reasonably priced places to get you going.
I hope to see your hearts around town!!
Last week, at a Trim the Tree party, a friend brushed me up on my origami skills and re-taught me how to make paper cranes… for this, I am grateful.
A Holiday Story (within a story within a story)
A few days ago, while watching the news, I was touched by a story of David Heard, a young boy with neuroblastoma, who, inspired by an ancient Japanese legend, started making paper crane mobiles to donate to pediatric cancer centers around the country.
The crane has been long revered in Japanese culture as a symbol of devotion and honor. It is said that a crane can live for a thousand years and when they mate, they mate for life. As the legend goes, whomever folds 1000 paper cranes is granted a wish.
After World War II the story evolved to embrace the theme of world peace through the story of a little girl named Sadako Sasaki, who developed leukemia as a result of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima.
As it was her wish to live, Sadako spent the days of her illness in bed folding paper cranes in the hopes of fulfilling the legend and being granted her desire by the crane. And while she died before being able to complete the task, her friends and family carried out her last wish, completed the cranes, and buried them with her.
In the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, the Children’s Peace Monument was erected in memory of Sadako and other children who died as a result of the bombing. On the statue there is a plaque which reads, “This is our cry. This is our prayer. Peace on Earth.”
While you are spending time with your friends and family this holiday season why not start a new tradition, make some cranes and mail them to: The Heard Family at 130 W. Lafayette St. in Easton, PA, 18042 and help make David’s wish a reality.
* * * * some resources * * * *
There is a wonderful article about David Heard and his inspiring and ambitious project, here.
To learn how to make your own origami cranes you can download instructions, here.
The official Hiroshima peace site has a great kids section for those interested in sharing the story of Sadako with youngsters, here.
Take your standard paper bag puppet to the next level with a little collaging. These silly paper bag puppets are a combination of magazine clippings, feathers, googlie eyes, glitter, beads pipe cleaner and more…
We started by going through old magazines and looking for mix-and-match body parts. We cut out eyes, noses, feet, arms and outfits. Then, with a glue stick and the collage box, we got to work assembling funny faces and personalities for our puppets. As we worked, we gave the puppets names and hobbies and voices, and by the time we were done gluing everything together we were ready to put on a show.
The most difficult part of this project was waiting for the glue to dry before we could play!!!