Monday, July 30, 2012
You could hear a pin drop in the community room at the Mount Vernon Public Library. Everyone was working on their collage with so much concentration that the usual banter amongst the collagers was absent. Bark from a tree, fabric and sports magazines lay next to each other waiting for someone to claim them for their collage. Two boxes overflowed with collaging materials I collected over the past few weeks around my home and from friends. Felt, sponge, a puffy pipe cleaner, a piece of yarn and images from a magazine were collaged together to make a person with a goatee wearing a red scarf (photo above). From so many different pieces comes one great idea!
Monday, July 23, 2012
I introduced the students to paper weaving - weaving strips through paper warps. Warps in different colors lay next to a pile of colorful construction paper strips. The strips acted as weft or filler which go through the warp ends. "Over then under, over then under," I repeated. " I know," a student said, "I just follow the pattern." After the first row was completed the next strip went through the warp in the opposite pattern to lock-in the strip above. One student used a yellow warp, and yellow and red strips in his paper weaving. He said it reminded him of ketchup and mustard!
Monday, July 16, 2012
During the fourth collage workshop at the Mount Vernon Public Library I read Mark Reibstein's Wabi Sabi to the children before they started collaging. Wabi Sabi is a children's story about a Japanese cat named Wabi Sabi, who goes on a journey to find the meaning of his name. After I read the story out loud to the children I asked them if they knew the meaning of their name. Some children nodded their head yes, while others were not so sure. The book peaked their curiosity though and made them want to find out the meaning of their name. The children's name was the central focus of this collage workshop. From a big pile of alphabet stencils children found the letters that spelled their name. I taught the children how to trace the letters by holding down the stencil with one hand, while the other hand went around the edges of the letter with a pencil. Children collaged around the letters and inside the letters using felt, colored tissue paper, plastic shapes, and yarn. Some children used yarn to outline the letters in their name. I saw a wide variety of collages. Every name collage was different just like the children.
Monday, July 9, 2012
During the third collage workshop at the Mount Vernon Public Library children were able to chose their own collaging materials from a wide assortment of items. Fabric, ribbons, papers, packing materials, plastic netting, bottle tops, and so much more was strewn across the work table. Children pondered the possibilities as they examined the materials. The little girl in the photo above carefully arranged the foil on her cardboard base, then ran back to the materials table to see what else she could find to add to her collage. One child broke the plane of the paper and transformed his collage into a city. Another child made a birthday card with tissue paper hearts and bows. I never get tired of watching the children work. They were excited, and busy creating the entire class.
Wednesday, July 4, 2012
Have you ever looked up in the sky and seen a cloud that looked like an animal, or an object, or a person's face? I have. In Eric Carle's Little Cloud a small cloud transforms itself into different things such as a sheep, an airplane, trees, and a hat. This book was the inspiration for cloud collages that the children at the Mount Vernon Public Library created using their memories or imagination. Some clouds came off the page (crumpled paper), others were colorful, and one collage was made up of soothing organic shapes that reminded the artist of the ocean. This collage workshop is funded by a generous grant from ArtsWestchester.