Friday, July 16, 2010

Foil Experiment & Recycled ATCs

A few posts ago I used an Easter Egg kit to put foil on a mermaid's tail. In the spirit of recycling, I decided I wanted to experiment with foil from chocolate wrappers to see if I could get the same effect. I knew I needed a really tacky, sticky glue so I tried Rubber Cement and Craft Bond.

First, I applied the glue to some pretty junk mail I collected.
Then I waited until the surface was partially dry and used a spoon to press the foil onto the paper.
Rubber Cement did not do very well. It was not tacky enough for the foil to stay attached. The Craft Bond was the definite winner of the two. The only problem with it is it did not create the texture I was looking for, see the mermaid paper doll entry for the weathered look I was going for. Instead it applied the foil on pretty evenly with just minor veining. I had to work at scratching it up to get some of the paper underneath to show through.

I completed the experiment by creating a recycled ATC with my foil and junk mail. I was inspired my son's experience in Art Ho's Mosaic Summer Camp. There are still two weeks left of this camp if you are in the DC area and want to check it out. It is very cool.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Environmentally Friendly Art

Laura (mentioned in a previous post) and I once had a conversation about environmentalism and art. We feel some guilt about creating new things when there is already so much stuff out there in the world. Do you ever feel like this? At the same time, we feel such a strong pull to create. I do think there is a role for art for art's sake. However, I have been trying to use more of my creative energy for practical purposes. Upcycling, making new things from old things, preferably stuff you would have thrown away, is one way to keep the creative juices flowing while making less of an environmental impact.
Some ideas for creating while lessening your environmental impact:
1. When I lived in Ithaca, NY, I saw a raincoat made from juice pouches. You can learn how to make a similar raincoat.
2. Another sewing project is using old t-shirts to make cloth diapers. Or if you are a knitter, making a soaker (a breathable cover for cloth diapers) might be your thing.
3. Old wool sweaters can be felted and turned into toys, purses, needle cases, tons of things!
4. Artist Trading Cards are often made of recycled components. (Tomorrow see my experiment in this.)
5. Repurpose LED lights and other stuff from old computer equipent. Cool tutorial on how to scavenge from an old CD drive from Make magazine.