Monday, February 3, 2014

Finishing Starry Night Mural

 Problem Solved!
 
After deliberating for awhile as to what to do to fill in the gaps
of the Starry Night mural, I decided to use spackling paste.
 
I unscrewed caps along the gaps and then applied the paste.
After the spackling dried, I painted that section of the mural.
 
Below are photos of this process:

    
 
  
    




 
 

 

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Hanging "Starry Night" Mural


The Creative Process Continues

My family and I moved to eastern Pennsylvania mid-August of 2013,
and, needless to say, my time has been limited as we
have been settling into our new lives.

Hence, this delayed post to bring viewers up-to-date on the
"Starry Night" bottle cap mural.

The final piece consists of six panels, each measuring 2' x 4' -
making the mural's total size approximately 8' x 8'.
Each panel was screwed into the wall using
drywall screws and anchors.

Once the mural was hung, some of the panels did not fit together
exactly right, leaving gaps in parts of the mural.

Visually, this really disrupted from the overall cohesiveness of the mural.

I just couldn't live with the mural looking this way and took some time
to brainstorm remedies to this situation.

Below are some photos showing these unfortunate gaps:
 
 

Check out the next post to see what I chose to do!
 
 



Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Sweden's Model of Sustainability

 
 
Sweden's Model of Sustainability
 
 
I came across this article on Facebook and couldn't believe it!
 
50% of U.S. trash ends up in landfills, compared to Sweden -
where only 4% of their trash ends up in landfills.
 
This is just amazing!
 
Here is the link to the article:
 
 
What can the United States (and other countries) be doing to
decrease the amount of trash we produce???
 
 
 
 


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Screwing Down the Caps

Next Step:
Screwing Down the Caps



Finally, the mural was at a point where the students
could start screwing down the caps!!

I recommend screwing down the caps 
as opposed to just gluing,
as this makes for a more
permanent installation.

The students loved seeing the foam core boards
placed on the particle wood as they could
 see the design of mural start to come together.

Below are photos of the two halves of the mural 
(the bottom and the top)
with most of the caps screwed down.



We were fortunate that Home Depot donated
the rental of six cordless drills, along with 
chargers and extra batteries. 

Along with the four cordless drills I brought from home, 
there were enough drills for the class to have
one drill per student. 

Just a note: I made sure to go over how to safely use 
the drills with the students.

Home Depot also donated three boxes of drywall screws
with approximately 1,000 screws in each box. 

As noted in the previous post, the main spiral received 
some remedial work. 

Due to a shortage in light blue caps, the spiral
was spray painted to give it a sense of unity.

Here is the photo again: 











Thursday, June 13, 2013

Gluing Down the Caps


The Next Step:
Gluing Down the Caps


Above is a photo of the first board
that had all of its caps glued down. 

This was so fun to see! 

The students loved seeing their work displayed
on the window sills of the art room.

At this stage, they were really starting to 
take pride in their work and in the 
project, in general. 


Above is a photo of two boards matching up. 
Again, the students loved seeing the mural 
starting to come together, one step at a time.

Gluing down the caps provided an opportunity to 

teach about some of the elements and principles of design.

I stressed to my students that in order for the mural to look
more visually interesting, they needed to choose caps 
of different sizes for any given area. 

This way, the caps would create a simulated look of texture

I told my students that if they chose one size of caps for an area, 
that this would look boring. I said to them, "Choose a variety of sizes
so that the mural looks more interesting!" 

They did a great job with this! 


Below is a photo of the mural (work-in-progress)
that was on display for the school's Art Show. 


You can see here how four of the foam core pieces were 
placed together on a larger board.

We used particle board from Home Depot for the larger boards. 
The corner caps were screwed down to the wood
in this photo, just to keep it together. 

Later, all of the caps would be screwed down (next post). 

We were very lucky in that Home Depot donated two large 
pieces of particle board (4' x 8'), 1/2" thick. 
These are priced at $20.00 a piece! 

Home Depot cut the boards down to the size you see above. 
We ended up with six boards cut to this size.

Note that the spiral on the right 
has different shades of blue. Arg!! 

This would be remedied later
to create a sense of unity for the main spiral.

I explained to my students that the main spiral is the central
point of Van Gogh's painting, the emphasis
Thus, it is important that this part of the mural be consistent in color.

It was hard to find enough light blue caps for this project!

Unfortunately, the best remedy I could come up with was
to spray paint the caps once they were all screwed down

Here is the end result: 




Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Painting the Mural


Painting the Mural


The project mentioned here 
will be a plastic bottle cap mural of 
Vincent Van Gogh's "Starry Night." 
(see previous posts). 

Once the design was outlined onto the foam core, 
the students began painting. 

This was the first time I had the design
painted to the surface before gluing down the caps.

I thought this would be best as the mural was big in size
and I wasn't sure if we'd have enough caps 
to cover the whole design. 
Just in case we ran out of caps, the design 
would still carry itself. 

The other reason I had the design painted to the surface first
was to make it easier for the students to know where to put the caps.




The students had a lot of fun choosing boards to paint.
This part of the process really helped the students to gain
individual ownership with the project.

All of the students did a fabulous job painting!
They really became engaged with their work. 
I loved saying to them, "Look at these artists!" 


Below is the mural with the boards put back together on the wall.
This is definitely a work-in-progress photo.

It was nice to see the mural back on the wall to evaluate
the design as a whole.


Below is the same image with the boards
almost entirely painted. 


Next, the gluing down of the plastic bottle caps! 
Stay tuned....

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Choosing Design for Mural



Preparing the Mural for Painting

I love creating a new mural because each mural 
presents itself with new challenges. 
I find the creative process so thrilling!

How big will the mural be?

What is going to be the final design?

What type of surface will the mural be on?

Once these questions are answered, 
the next step is making it happen.

After talking to the principal, I decided we would make 
a pretty big mural - roughly 7' x 7'...the biggest as of yet for me.

I researched different images of Starry Night as I knew
our mural would be the stylized version of the original.
Here are some ideas I found to get the juices flowing:





Then it was a matter of creating our own design.

The class and I discussed colors and different parts of each image
that we liked or dis-liked. 

We finally came up with an outline that we 
could use to project on a surface.

Here is that image:

how to draw starry night step 6

Knowing that this final image would be "tweaked"
according to our needs, I felt okay about copyright.
This image served as a beginning outline just to get
our design ready for painting. 

Then it was a matter of figuring out what surface to put the image on! 
Knowing that I wanted the mural painted first, 
I decided on foam core.

In the past I have outlined the image directly to the wood and 
did not bother to paint at all.

This time, I thought it'd be better for the students to have 
the image painted first and then put down the caps.

Here is the image all laid out on foam core boards, 
enlarged with an overhead projector:


The small boards also make it easier for students
to spread out as they work.

Next step, painting the mural!