Dec 26, 2011

Robot Art

I love Christmas break.  It means lots of crafty goodness for me and my girls.  We started yesterday, on Christmas day, and made some fun and easy art projects.  Here's mine.... 

I'm so in love with him!

I made him the same way that I made my big Family Subway Art project.
In fact, I still get several questions and comments about that project.  Lots of people think it's too overwhelming to try.  If you are one of them, I'm detailing the step-by-steps of the robot.  That way you can see the whole concept but in a much smaller, less-intimidating way.  And, if you try a small project, and it works, then you'll be ready to tackle a bigger project, like the word art.

So, where do you start?  You need to start with your design concept.  Last week, while I should have been addressing Christmas cards, I was doodling.  I doodled this little guy....

You can doodle your own design or search for simple clip art designs online.  Either will work, you just want to have an idea of what you will be creating.  And, don't get so hung-up on making it just like your doodle.  If you look at where I started and then the end result, they are very different.  Honestly, the end result is better.

So, now that you have your design in mind, here's the rest of the steps....

Step 1: Paint your canvas. The paint color you choose should be the color that will show your design. I chose a simple warm-white.  After painting, make sure it is completely dry before you add your design.

Step 2:  Cut your contact paper.  I cut mine into long strips, a few squares, circles for the eyes and a heart. I did long strips at first and then as I started to make my design, I cut the strips down into the sizes I actually needed them.

Tip:  If you aren't familiar with contact paper, it's usually by the shelf lining supplies in stores like Target or Walmart.  It is clear and has a light adhesive on the back.  It comes in a roll for right around $3-$4 dollars.

Step3:  Adhere your design to the canvas.  Take the cut out pieces of contact paper and start making your design.  In order to get the contact paper to stick, you just peel off the paper backing and place it on your canvas.  Because it is clear, it will be hard to see.  Just go slow and hold it up to the light as much as needed.  The plastic will catch the light and help you know where to place each piece. 

Step 4:
Now that your design is secured down, simply paint over it. Be careful not to push paint under your contact paper. In fact, it's best to push the paint away from the design. This will prevent the paint from bleeding under the design.

Step 5:  Once your paint has dried, very carefully start removing the contact paper to expose your design. It helps if you have a sharp or pointy tool to help you "lift" the contact paper up.  (Don't you love my nails?  My daughter got finger nail polish in her stocking and I was her "customer" at the pretend nail salon - lucky me!)

Step 6: I mentioned that if you aren't careful the paint will leak under your design.  If it does, don't worry.  Just take a really fine tipped paint brush and carefully paint over the part that leaked.  You can see in the photo above, I had some leakage problems.  I don't have a picture of it, but I just used the warm-white paint and painted over the green.

Step 7:  Next, after all the paint is completely dry, I took a little bit of sand paper and very lightly sanded the design.  You don't have to do this step but I did as I had some paint ridges/brush strokes that I wanted to knock down.

And, that is that!  You can seriously make this as simple or as complex as you want.  And, it can be a fun thing for kids to do too.  Let them do abstract art or make their own design.  It's easy and fun!