Jul 26, 2012

Paper Mache Elephant Project

Image: Ultimate Paper Mache

Why do people collect the things they collect?

Apart from the obvious motivations such as nostalgia, social interaction with other collectors, appreciation of beauty, investment and a need to posses a small part of the world, there is the personal pleasure of it.

I have one visible collection and it's not even really mine.

20 years ago, on my 18th birthday, my mother bought me a large ceramic elephant. I say large, but it was just big enough to hold a potted plant. I don't know why she bought me an elephant, I don't remember ever discussing elephants or that I liked elephants or that I wanted any large ceramic representations of an elephant that were big enough to hold a potted plant. I didn't even own or want a potted plant. But great collections have to start somewhere.

20 years and 8 homes later my collection of elephants has grown and shrunk. Each passing birthday, a new addition was handed to me from close friends and family, with a knowing smile from them and an internal "Huh?" from me. Peer pressure forces some kids to take up smoking. I was made collect elephants.

I mentioned that I have one visible collection. The elephants. They are on show in every room but I'm not one of the crazy folk* who has 100's of them. There are probably 12 - 15 in total, spread around 6 rooms. So that's the visible collection. My invisible collection is hidden under beds, in wardrobes & behind wardrobes, in the attic, in suitcases and has now started moving out to the shed. That collection is 'empty space'.

I have started to de-clutter my house of all the rubbish wonderful useful items I've held on to in the hope that they might come in handy some day. My latest obsession is newspapers. I've held on to more than my fair share (not like this guy) because I love to find ways of recycling old newspaper.
I've probably had about a stack of 20 newspaper on the go for the last 6 months and now that newspaper stack can help one of my collections achieve the other.

Ultimate Paper Mache have this incredible tutorial on making your own paper mache elephant.

.                                                                 Video: Ultimate Paper Mache

Check out the video and have a look at the website. They have a great list of projects for kids, such as these.

Paper Mache Buildings

Image: Art For Small Hands

                   Bunny Rabbit                                                                                    Jack Skellington
Image: bkids
Image: Monstermade

The way I see it, another project on these pages leaves me with more empty space at home and these days, I'm starting to build up quite a collection.

*You're not crazy - you just have a special bond with your collection. No one appreciates it as much as you.

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