Sunday, February 17, 2013

Won't you be my neighbor?

I want to live in this neighborhood! For this auction art project I loved the idea of each student creating their house and together the class created a whole neighborhood. The kids knew the shape of their house and knew what they wanted it to look like. It was execution that seemed a bit of a hurdle. After all, they are only 3-5 years old. I decided to simplify the process. The kids are great with scissors and they definitely know their shapes. This made sense to use cut paper. In order to give the piece an finer art quality I decided to use tissue paper. I bought a canvas and had them cut the shapes and details of their home out of tissue. As we mod podged the pieces of their homes to the canvas I was informed of all sorts of stories. I would ask what color their house was going to be and often I was told that it wasn't a "house". It is a "secret agents office" or "This is a "french food place". I also got a toy store. The stories became more and more interesting and the artwork started representing the stories the kids were telling me. It was AMAZING! Of course the Secret Agent Office is solid gold. Why wouldn't the toy store be bright pink? And, well..the French resturant. Do I need to point it out? I am so excited about this piece that I am sharing it a bit early. I have outlined all the shapes that the kids cut and glued down with a fine sharpie. I will also be labeling each building to personalize it to who created it. The labels will read things like "Sophia's French Cuisine, Marley's Toy Store, Office of Secret Agent Caleb and Oyer Mansion (enter if you dare) so that the parents will see what part of the neighborhood their child contributed. I will try my best to resist bidding on this piece. No promises though. UPDATE! The finished piece!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Millefiori Mirror

Millefiori is Italian for "Millions of flowers". This is a technique that comes to life as you layer and roll different colors of clay together creating a "cane". It's also done in glass. I had never tried either medium but I was pretty sure it would make a great auction project. I pulled the basic supplies together. A pasta maker for rolling the clay out, a long razor blade, a baking matt and FIMO. The kids and I discovered the process together. I learned quickly that the easiest way to somewhat maintain consistency is to control the color palette. The kids had 5 colors of clay to work with. It was their choice as to what colors and pattern they created within those 5 color choices. Some would even borrow others work and add to it. It was a great collaborative project. Once the canes were completed I sliced them and baked the pieces. The 3rd year kids in the class placed the pieces into a mirrored frame. I poured a 2 part epoxy over the pieces to complete the project. My favorite moment while doing this project was when the teacher approached me and said,"You've done this before. right?". HA!! My response was, "OF COURSE I haven't!"