Thursday, January 7, 2016

In the Art Room: 3-D Letters!

Hey, y'all! I'm back, as promised, with the other awesome project I did during my fab-o art teacherin' PD this week! In case you missed the "I Am" books post, let your fingers do the clicking and check it here. In the afternoon, the leader of our PD, Daryle Grenead, taught us how to make these super fun 3-D letters! 
Full disclosure: a good buddy took Daryle's class a while back and gifted me her half-finished ART sign (thanks, Deb!). So I got to skip several steps and fly straight to the papier-mâché and painting. You know, the fun stuff. But don't you worry, I took several photos of my friend Jennifer's hands while she worked away on creating her letter so I could share them here with y'all. She's a glorious hand model, that Jennifer. You'll see. But first! 
Check out the inspiration that Daryle created and shared with us! He recommended doing this project with middle schoolers. He also mentioned that if they do something like their name, each letter takes about one art class to tape and papier-mâché. For our time's sake, each of us did one letter (well, except for me). 
To start, Daryle recommended using stencils to help the kids cut out their initial. We simply laid the stencils over the cardboard and traced. Two will need to be cut out with box cutters, one for the front and the back. Daryle said he cut the letters out for his younger students to save on instructional time and for safely issues. If you are doing an entire word as I have, you simply lay out the letters of your word on a large sheet of cardboard. Make sure each letter is touching, tape the letters together and trace onto the cardboard. This way, when you cut it out, it is one solid piece of cardboard, not multiple pieces. 
 Once you've cut out your two letters (or your complete word, cut twice), lay a piece of heavy duty poster board beside your letter. The width of the board will determine the depth of your letter. As you lay the board beside the letter, add tick marks as each corner of the letter. This is where you will fold the poster board. 
 As my friend Jennifer's lovely hands are demonstrating. 
 Once that is complete, fold the paper along your tick marks. 
Which is easier to do if you score the board first with a dull pencil and then fold over matte board. 
 Ta-da! You can start to see the shape of the letter! 
Using masking tape, start taping the edge of the letter to the poster board. You'll need to use a couple pieces of poster board to complete the letter so be ready. 
 And have tape ready. 
While Jen was taping away, I started snapping pics of my buddy David working on his R. Notice that when he was done with one side, he fitted the other cut out into place and started taping that down. Also, don't forget to create that super fun inside piece! 
And bring on the snotty papier-mâché! Layer the whole stinkin' thing. Now you see it would take the kids multiple days to do just a letter. A great art club/after school/summer camp kind of project, says moi. 
 I love that some folks skipped the letter idea and did things like this and symbol and we even had a dollar sign!
 Of course, you can see here, I was pretty spoiled by my friend's half finished efforts. I just had a lil work to do and let it dry over night. 
For the more advanced set, Daryle had created these amazing pieces for our TN football team. 
 Before painting, Daryle suggested painting everything with a coat of white acrylic. Then add color and seal with a clear coat. 
 I couldn't wait to get to school the next morning and finish my sign! The best part was splatter painting it. Seriously, y'all. I now know why ole Jackson had a thing for paint slinging, it was a blast!
And now it hangs proudly at my Art Supply Store. The kids loved seeing it today! 
 photo signature_zpsd10b3273.png


  1. I love it. I will surely make one. Thank you for great post.

  2. I'm seeing this in a Christmas version for my home, with lights.... Too soon? ;-)

  3. Thanks for posting this info. I just want to let you know that I just check out your site and I find it very interesting and informative. I can't wait to read lots of your posts.


Thank you so much for your comments. I appreciate each and every one :)

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.