At Inspiracion Gallery we've found great pleasure in making art out of discarded plastic bottles. These projects have increased our awareness of plastic waste. Now we cannot ignore the many bottles on the side of the road, at the beach, and overflowing community trash cans.
There are just too many of them for us, alone, to save and make into art. So, we would like to share some techniques in hopes that others find joy transforming this invasive waste into cool art. Making plastic bottle masks and fish (see below) provides a fun and easy way to clean your community. Inspiracion Gallery invites anyone to exhibit their masks, fish, or other art creations for sale or just for display. Additionally, we hold monthly shows and offer workshops focused on eco-art and painting instruction. Call Inspiracion Gallery for more information at 2640-0690.
1. Plastic bottles. For the masks the bottles that work best have an hour-glass like curve rather than a straight cylinder. For the fish, any bottle will work. 2. Scissors and/or sharp point knife. The knife will help you start your cuts in the middle of the bottle and then the scissors can enter and take over the rest of the cutting. Adults should handle the knife cuts for young children. 3. Sandpaper.
4. Wood approximately 5cm x 20cm. 5. Fabric or paper.
6. Wood glue. 7. Paint. Acrylics work best. Also covering the mask or fish with a white primer coat gives a nice even, clean surface before decorative painting.
1. Find your plastic bottle. Clean the bottle by rinsing well with soap and water.
2. Cut off the top and bottom of bottle as indicated lines.
3. Using sandpaper, sand the bottle well. This helps the paint adhere to the bottle.
4. Make a straight cut from top to bottom.
5. Using nails or staples, attach a piece of wood. This will spread the bottle apart into a mask-like shape.
6. Cut the eyes, nose, and mouth. It helps to mark first where these cross cuts will go using pen or chalk. This allows you to maintain the balance of the mask's facial features.
7. Fold out the eyes, nose and mouth. Do not push your finger through the cross cuts, you might get your finger stuck. Instead, pry up and crease each quarter of the cross cut to make a wide opening. Sometimes we use needle nose pliers to really pull open and mold creases in the plastic.
8. Cut out fabric or paper as indicated. These will cover for the eyelids (upper and lower) and nose.
9. Use glue to adhere eyelids on the folded out eye pieces and the nose piece. Allow to glue to dry.
10. Paint and decorate your mask. Once the paint has dried, cut and bend the hair. We've experimented with different cuts and have discovered some interesting styles.
1. Cut off the top and bottom of bottle along indicated lines.
2. Use sandpaper and sand the bottle well (for paint adhesion).
3. Cut the bottle as indicated (tear drop cuts) to make tail and fins.
4. Wrap strong tape around thin mid-section to close it. Cut lines on the side for fins.
5. Use piece that was cut from tail cut to fit in line cut on side.
6. Put cut out bottle top in backwards for the mouth.
7. Paint to desired effect!
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