Monday, April 30, 2012

A colorful crayon collage...and what went wrong with it!

I have been wanting to do a particular melting art project with Aidan for a while.  Ever since I saw a time lapsed video of someone melting whole crayons with a blow dryer onto canvas, I knew Aidan would enjoy wielding the tool that he thinks is fun to blow my hair with into a big mess.  The version shown in the video I saw would take too long for a four year old to do, so I modified our approach.
We gathered a blank canvas, pencil sharpener, blow dryer, and a box of untouched crayons.  Who doesn't have extra crayons lying around the house?  I think my mother uses the same bucket of miscellaneous crayons I used  as a kid with my nephews, they last forever!
Aidan and I began by peeling off the paper from certain colors he picked out, then he started making shavings of the crayons with the pencil sharpener.  He dumped and sprinkled the curly colors all over the canvas.
We tested the blow dryer on the shaving covered canvas on the floor, so Aidan could hold the dryer at a more comfortable height, hoping it wouldn't blow too many shavings away.  Even on the lowest setting, the dryer blew colors across the floor.  It was funny to watch, but not the result we wanted.  We tried covering it with foil, leaving space above the surface so the shavings wouldn't stick to the foil.  The dryer blew the foil closer to the surface anyway, melting the shavings a little, but sticking to the foil instead.  We picked off what we could and sprinkled it back on the canvas. 
Aidan wanted to try laying it under the sun, like we did when we cooked the marshmallow in the sun.  We moved the art/experiment outside and covered it with an aluminum bowl so the wind wouldn't carry away all of Aidan's hard work...and my patience!  We played in the sunshine for an hour and a half, but there was no change.  Aidan was looking discouraged, but told me we needed to try it in the oven now.
I set the oven to the lowest temperature it would let me, 170 degrees, fashioned a tray out of foil, and popped it in the oven for five minutes.
Finally!  Success!  As Aidan inspected the melted colors, he told me he saw a tornado in the picture.  I have more canvases stashed away, I bought a pack of them on sale.  Aidan hopes to do more melted crayon shavings with them because melting stuff is just too cool!

Like Little Moments Facebook Page to stay up to date on all our moments and more!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Heather - me again! I love the finished canvas & I am glad to know that it's not just me who sees things that look so easy but never quite turn out that way when I attempt it with my class!


I love hearing from you, stop by any time!