Friday, July 31, 2020

More Bird Feeders!

We made these recycled bird feeders! Can you tell what we made them from?

We also used acrylic paint and natural materials for the roof.

First, using a Sharpie, each artist drew an opening (or two) on each side of the carton, and I cut them out with my craft knife.

Meanwhile, our artists selected items like bark or wood to glue to the top to create a cute roof. We used hot glue for that.

Then we proceeded to paint.

This artist started with the roof first. (Yes, it is okay to paint the roof.)

To thoroughly cover the carton, we learned to add a little white to the paint to make it more opaque.

The next step was to add a hanger. Then each artist received a small bag of birdseed to feed the birds. Some of them also made little bird journals so they could draw the birds that they see.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Feed the Birds!

This week our young artists made bird feeders. What a great way to invite
songbirds into our yards, so we can watch... and draw them!

Our older kids used natural materials to create their bird feeders.  They selected a wood base and additional materials that appealed to them.

First they drilled holes in the corners or around the edges for the hangers (yes, we used power tools!) and began to plan their designs.

They needed to design a barrier to keep the seed from blowing off the feeder, then build from there. We used glue guns to attach each component.

After creating this pine cone barrier, this artist wrapped it and jute and then added sticks, swirly wire, and beads for a colorful, funky look.

The next step is to add a hanger using wire or jute or twine. Some chose to incorporate beads into their hangers or even to wrap colorful jute around the hanger wire.  

The hangers were attached by slipping the ends through the drilled holes in the base, then wrapping the end around a short twig to hold it in place. The trick is to then balance the feeder so that it's level when connecting the wire at the top.

Last step. Each artist filled a bag with birdseed to take home and feed the birds! 

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Painting our own Face Masks!

We made "wearable art" by painting and personalizing our own fashionable face masks!

We started with a simple white mask with a filter pocket sewn into the back. We first transformed the mask into a mini-canvas by temporarily placing a piece of cardboard inside the pocket. Then we lightly sketched our designs on the front of the masks.

Next, using acrylic paint, we painted the basic shapes with color (or left the mask white). 

Then we added outlining and details as desired, such as the scales on this dragon face mask.

I gave very little instruction for this project because the kids already seemed to know exactly what they wanted to do!

I loved all of their unique ideas! 

Here is an abstract design. 

This is an interesting face mask idea!

A couple of the kids painted masks for their younger siblings too.
Once the paint was dry, we removed the cardboard from the pocket and squeezed the side edges together while holding the ear ties taunt. Then we tied the ends of the ties together to fit around the ears.

I sewed all of these masks from white cotton fabric (bleached muslin) using this simple pattern and two stretchy weaving loops. 

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Paintings in Nature Frames


We made these tiny watercolor paintings in 3-D nature frames!

I know! Aren't they awesome?

Here's what we did:

First, using tempera paint, we sponge- painted the frames, which were cut from corrugated cardboard. While the paint dried, we collected nature items to glue on with Tacky glue. 

Then we painted. We traced the inside of our frames on one end of  9" x 12" watercolor paper, then traced it again on the other end, leaving an inch around each rectangle.  This was so we could create two different watercolor paintings. 

Our first was a linear landscape with an old fence. Then we painted a woodsy scene of birch trees using masking tape.

We chose our favorite little painting and taped it into our frame.

The rest of our little paintings could be used for other things - like greeting cards, post cards, or to frame at home! 

Sunday, July 05, 2020

Rock Painting

Have you ever painted rocks? 

Turns out, it's really fun! We have a big collection of clean smooth rocks to choose from. The idea is to choose a rock that "speaks" to you. What could this rock become?

These flat oval rocks make very believable cacti!

Food is a fun subject for rock painting. Here we have slice of watermelon.

You can also paint messages on rocks. Here is a Father's Day message, "Dad Your ROCK!" and a cookie to go with it!

You can also paint a landscape on a rock. 

Like this one: 

Or a "sky-scapes" like these:

More creative rock paintings: