Tag Archives: monsters

Kids Tent @ Moor Music festival

25 Jul

Armed with a big bag full of scrap fabrics, some stuffing and safe plastic needles, I went to the Moor Music festival last weekend. Sarah Spicer did a fantastic job of organising the kids tent and the activities this year. There were zones for different activities: Hoopla, Dressing up, Telephone, Face Painting, Random craft and my Re-Toyed Trash sewing workshop so the kids had too much to do to ever get bored. I also noticed some non-kids sneak in for a face painting.

Kids tent

The kids were decorating the tent with their creations throughout the festival and made hats, tea pots and other magical things to be used in their Mad Hatters Tea Party on the last evening.  Some images from the party will be in the next post.

I brought with me some examples of plush toys made at recent workshops. You might recognise some of these characters from previous blog posts. The tortoise and the octopus were very popular with the kids and some tried their best to take them home. However I offered that they could make their own toys instead.

Plush audience

Some of the kids had never sewn before and needed lots of help to get started, so we had lots of one-on-one sewing lessons. The ‘Monsters Inc.‘ furry fabric seemed to be very popular with lots of monsters being sewn together.

Robyn made a teddy bear called ‘Sully’, named after the Monsters Inc character. I was very impressed with her sewing capabilities and her patience because this teddy bear took a long time to complete. Here she is with her completed teddy.

Robyn with Sully

This girl made a snake from a section of some old stripey socks. Notice the snake’s long tongue with hearts on it. This snake is called Alex.

Asha and her snake

Here’s a full-length photo of Alex.

Alex the snake

This plush is a soft monster ball with eyes.

Monster ball

Ellie made two furry seals on the first day. This is the second one with two ears.

Furry seal with two ears by Ellie

More workshop photos

17 Apr

As promised more photos from the ladyfest workshop (thank you Sarah!). There’s some good ones of the workshop in progress. Here’s the stereo ready to be dismantled, well it’s ready to be dropped onto concrete after trying for enough time with the tools to break it apart…

Stereo soon to be dismanted

Here’s me unscrewing parts of the stereo after having dropped it from a height onto concrete. The stereo split into two parts and exposed the insides with all the circuit boards.

Workbench

Zo and Ames are beginning to make their monsters. I liked the way that Zo had stitched a bead necklace under some latex to create a spine for her creature. The latex being re-used here was from a huge monster sculpture that Dan had made for his degree show.
Dan’s monster was on display in the Leeds Met University main entrance few a few weeks, but unfortunately because of its gigantic size, it had to be taken apart because he could not find adequate storage for it. For a good view of the whole gigantic monster click here. Ames combined different found elements to give her monster a Jamaican vibe. I love the palm trees.

Finding materials

Dan working on some found wings…

Dan working with wings

Toby starting his monster, this dude made the mighty bird monster with wings made from reused latex.

Workshop

This guy is one of the couple who travelled up from Reading for the festival. He’s using a saw to cut off sections from the found toys to make it easier to glue them together. If you can spot the tiny prodigy sticker on the table….Dan went to great lengths to cut into the plastic of the stereo just to get this sticker off in one piece so he could put it onto the back of his crab monster.

Workshop

Sarah, one of our visiting ‘resident’ artists looking proud after making the first of her two robots. This one’s modestly named bot. He’s flying an art market flag. Bot is made mainly from old electrical equipment, including a cassette player for his head. Knitted resident artist sash made by Lil Adams.

Workshop

If this doesn’t illustrate how happy this workshop can make someone, I don’t know what will. Great smile Dan. It does also look as though he’s wearing a big black feather at the back of his head, suitable for a cocktail party.

Dan with wings

Zo’ monster nearly finished, with a baby doll plastic arm.

Zo

A rummage through the boxes of junk.

Rummaging in the boxes

Dan’s second monster….I think it looks a bit like a the skeleton crab riding a monster bike.

Crab monster

Toby’s bird monster…

bird monster

Sarah’s second creation of the day, this one is named ‘Ro’, with a circuit board for a body, a headphone-head, an old necklace for a mouth and the bit the holds a CD in place in a stereo for an eye.

Ro

A friendly artist (didn’t manage to catch his name) showing me his creation that has shaped up to look like a dinosaur. I’m impressed, you can’t see my face but I am.

workshop

dinosaur monster

A workshop regular, Rachel ‘Miss Police’ working on her fantastically camp mime cat monster. Using many colourful beads.

Rachel

Crystal re-using some furry fabric.

Crystal

Submissions and a monster collage

23 Nov

I received some responses to the email that I sent out on LVAF a while ago asking for submissions for the exhibition. A few responses seem very promising. This means we shall have more artists exhibiting their work. One of the artists, Jonathon Bointon, has a piece called ‘Glassback Bear’ to submit and also has some partly animated film work to submit. We shall definitely have films shown now, especially since it shows the potential for toys to be displayed in another form.

I created a collage of the monsters that were made at the Saturday Art Club ‘Monster Making’ workshop…

monster collage

Monster Making Workshop

19 Nov

Saturday Art Club poster

On Saturday 18th November, Dan Walls and I conducted a Monster Making workshop as part of the fortnightly ‘Saturday Art Club @ Fab Cafe’. This was our first workshop and we were pleased by the amount of participation and how many toys were made. We supplied the materials: furry fabrics, bones, parts of old toys, googly eyes, glue and decorating materials.

Some people didn’t quite understand the idea of it, asking ‘how much does it cost?’, and when we replied ‘nothing’ they said ‘what’s the catch?’. I guess some people aren’t used to being offered to do something fun at no cost. When people got over this initial shock of it being free and got into it, I think they enjoyed themselves.

Here’s some of the first monsters that were made: (from left to right) ‘Scabby Crabby’ by Bryony Pritchard, ‘YetiKenny’ (not yet finished) and ‘Knackbot’ both by Dan Walls

Some of the first monsters made

Rachel is showing some affection to her new monster creation…

Rachel Creamer giving some love to her newly made monster named 'Gareth'

Ogi’s holding his monster together with some glue…

Ogi working on his monster

John Martin holding together his monster ‘Bob’

John Martin with his monster 'Bob'

Didn’t manage to get this man’s name – but he created a really cool like monster with pins and screws attached

The monster table

The next workshop shall be Robot Making. It’ll be in two weeks time on Saturday 2nd December. Everyone is welcome. Dan and I shall be smashing up some old un-functioning stereos and televisions before then to use. But everyone is free to bring their own stuff to use.

We decided that for next time we shall bring a guestbook for names, creations and comments.

Saturday Art Club @ Fab Cafe

18 Nov

First Workshop

I have organised an art making workshop at the Fab Cafe in Leeds. The first session is tomorrow (Saturday 18th November 2006) and the theme is Monsters and if it’s successful, I hope to have a different workshop fortnightly. I thought Fab Cafe would be a good venue with it’s wide selection of sci-fi and cult television memorabilia, including a life-sized darlek and King Kong as well as a number of old school toys in glass cases, which could be great inspiration for making toys. It also provides a sociable space and sells drinks.

I have organised an art making workshop at the Fab Cafe in Leeds. This workshop is a result of a collaboration between the artist Dan Walls and myself. Dan creates small toy sculptures using found materials and things that would otherwise be waste. He shall be showing examples of his creations at the workshop and giving any help and advice to those who need it.

I created these posters to advertise the workshop and have put them up around Leeds. I wouldn’t say I was a graphic artist, but these posters hopefully reflect the D.I.Y. sense of the workshop. I had an idea that for each workshop there would be a different poster with an illustration of the new theme. This time it’s monsters, with one attacking the Merrion Centre building. The next poster shall feature an attack by robots .
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As well as putting these posters up around Leeds in various places, I have created a myspace account to spread the word.
www.myspace.com/recycledtoys
Go check out the myspace page for news of the next workshop and to post your comments.

Alternatively email: recycledtoys@hotmail.com