A funny little project...

10 Apr 2008

Last week, I taught a series of craft classes for our local library system's Staff Day. This is a day when they close all the branches and all 500+ library staffers convene for a day of fun and educational workshops.

This is one of the classes we did. I call them "Workspace Guardians," which strikes me now as jolly ponderous. They're meant to brighten your cubicle or bulletin board. Here's how the idea works:

I made a cardstock template of body parts, including these mix-and-match arms, of which I was quite proud. You can install them palm-up or palm-down, depending on the look you want!

Then, I went to good old Google Image Search and found portraits of authors - since the project was for library staff, it seemed appropriate. I compiled them all on a page, and sized them up and down until they were more or less consistent.

I brought a mountain of fancy paper, and a lot of little collagey gewgaws. The group then cut out the template pieces, covered them with paper, and embellished away.

We installed the arms (and optional wings) with brads, so they could swing up and down . . . mostly because I thought that was funny.

I wish I had pictures of all the wild, extravagant figures people made. They make mine look hopelessly simple. People really seemed to love this project - and I think that had a lot to do with the personalities of the authors and people's associations with them. All those energies really seemed to bring these little guys to life. (Some pretty funny liberties were taken with F. Scott Fitzgerald here.)

The cool thing is, you could do this with all kinds of groups - every group has its own heroes. A group of scientists could use faces of Einstein and Copernicus. A group of chefs could use Julia Child and James Beard. And so on.

(In case you were wondering, mine are, from left to right: Dorothy Parker, Oscar Wilde, and Virginia Woolf.)

Comments

Oh man! I love this! So cool and fun!


Shut UP! These are GREAT!! I love your choice of people, too! I'm going to do this after I finish my 47 art card swap projects.


Great idea! That would be fun for all sorts of groups and parties. I'm thinking it would be a good pre-planning activity for a bride-to-be and her attendants - before shopping for their dresses. Lots of
attendants aren't happy with their dresses! (to put it mildly)
Maybe a little more input from them would be a good idea and lots of fun too - bride magazines, bits of tulle and ribbon, different shoes, hairdos. . .


oh, those are awesomely anerable! paper dolls are a wonderfully basic but expressive form. good show!


Your literary guardians are so original and inspired! Love that you included Dorothy Parker. I read somewhere that whenever she was about to pick up her ringing telephone, she would sigh and say "What fresh hell is this?"


Such a great idea! You always astound me with your creativity!


I love this project!! And what a great way to engage people who may not consider themselves "artists" . . .


What a fantastic idea! Thanks for sharing.


These would be so awesome for my dance students!!!


Love the idea! Love librarians!! =*)


I,ve been trying to come up with something for my husband's 50th class reunion. He volunteered me to make 8 centerpieces for the dinner tables. Seeing this project made everything click.I do believe everything has come together.Thanks,I'll be sure to send picture.


They are sooo cool. I love your Virginia and her green dress, great idea and so much fun! I want to make these too, and probably I would choose authors I think because I love reading! :-)

thanks for sharing, next time bring your camera with you! :-)


Oh man! I love this! So cool and fun!


I love this project!! And what a great way to engage people who may not consider themselves "artists" . . .


What a fantastic idea! Thanks for sharing.


These would be so awesome for my dance students!!!


Love the idea! Love librarians!! =*)


I,ve been trying to come up with something for my husband's 50th class reunion. He volunteered me to make 8 centerpieces for the dinner tables. Seeing this project made everything click.I do believe everything has come together.Thanks,I'll be sure to send picture.


They are sooo cool. I love your Virginia and her green dress, great idea and so much fun! I want to make these too, and probably I would choose authors I think because I love reading! :-)

thanks for sharing, next time bring your camera with you! :-)


Shut UP! These are GREAT!! I love your choice of people, too! I'm going to do this after I finish my 47 art card swap projects.


oh, those are awesomely anerable! paper dolls are a wonderfully basic but expressive form. good show!


Great idea! That would be fun for all sorts of groups and parties. I'm thinking it would be a good pre-planning activity for a bride-to-be and her attendants - before shopping for their dresses. Lots of
attendants aren't happy with their dresses! (to put it mildly)
Maybe a little more input from them would be a good idea and lots of fun too - bride magazines, bits of tulle and ribbon, different shoes, hairdos. . .


Your literary guardians are so original and inspired! Love that you included Dorothy Parker. I read somewhere that whenever she was about to pick up her ringing telephone, she would sigh and say "What fresh hell is this?"


Such a great idea! You always astound me with your creativity!


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