I used all the projects as a good example of creating background, mid-ground and foreground.
I first used the boxes with the Wednesday elementary class where the girls created "affirmation boxes".
10 year old
We discussed filling our heads with positive messages and to think about a message they felt was important to remind themselves of each day. I told them they could create whatever imagery they wanted to go with their message.
6 year old
We were having record breaking heat for Vancouver during this class and it seems ice cream was front and center on all the girls' minds because every single one of them focused on ice cream cones. I have no explanation for this whatsoever as I really left the project open ended as to what they put into their boxes.
6 year old
The six year olds are BFF's in class, so I'm not surprised to see them doing the same thing, but the two older girls surprised me with also focusing in on the cones.
9 year old
All I can say is that this ice cream cone was just so awesome when created that every other girl was inspired to create an awesome cone too.
red monkey, 5 year old
The elementary class had so much fun building their boxes, I next create a project for the 4-5 year old class using animals....because what 4-5 year old doesn't like animals?!
All of the above projects were created with acrylic paints on acrylic paper. The back of the boxes were first painted with the backgrounds directly on the box. (I put masking tape on the front so they didn't get paint on them) Then the animals were drawn, painted and cut out.
They kids adhered them inside the boxes with these round circle things that had adhesive on both sides. I have no idea what they are called, so round adhesive circle things is what you get.
horse, 4 year old
The children then created some paper pieces to create a foreground. These were glued directly on the front of the box or again added with those round adhesive things if they were going inside (this time stacking two round circle things together so it stuck out in front of the mid ground).
Finally I ran a morning workshop on a professional day at school, kids get the day off so teachers can plan. For this project, I shared a large photo book on the history of the circus. The boys were quite fascinated by some of the pictures from the 1920's, 30's, and 40's- especially the Side Shows. After we had looked at the book far longer than I had anticipated, lots of discussion on what was culturally appropriate in times past that would not be appropriate today, each boy picked something that was particularly interesting to them to create a circus montage.
dancing bear balancing on ball, 9 year old
The only thing different about this project is that instead of paper for the main imagery, the boys used oven baked clay and then painted it once cooled. They had a lot of fun creating these boxes, so much fun they used up 2.5 hours of the workshop! I was not expecting it to take that long at all.
man monkey smoking pipe, 9 year old
This box was inspired by a sideshow poster the artist saw in the book called "Darwin's Missing Link", the Man Monkey. The piece 'evolved' a bit as the artist did not deem it necessary anymore to include Darwin in the piece. Sorry Darwin, evolution....
And finally this work was inspired by the circus book and the new studio pet, ParaPete the Parakeet. Except now he's PiratePete the Parakeet!
PiratePete the Parakeet, 8 year old
ParaPete looks pretty fancy sporting an eyepatch. He'd probably enjoy a stint as a pirate.
I have a few boxes left and a few new projects in mind. The kids have had a great time working within the confines of the box and they were a great purchase for the studio, exemplified by the several different projects shown here!
If you happen across some of them while trolling the aisles of your local craft store, give them a go! I don't think you or your kids will be disappointed.