"A Faithful Attempt" is designed to showcase a variety of K-12 art lessons, the work of my art students, as well as other art-related topics. Projects shown are my take on other art teacher's lessons, lessons found in books or else designed by myself.
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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Plaster Masks

I did this mask project with a Grade 8 class.  To create the masks, we used plastic face forms which I ordered from Dick Blick. I initially liked them because they are multicultural. However, once I opened them, they're actually quite small-- I wish I could find much bigger ones. 

plastic face forms

plaster roll

I have done this mask project before having students make the masks on their faces, but it's quite the process: you always have one or two who don't want to do it, girls don't want their make-up to come off, etc, hence, I went with the face form and it's MUCH more convenient.  Students LOVE working with plaster, btw.  It's my most requested medium by all grades.

We used plaster strips to form the masks, about 2-3 layers. Once dry, we primed them and then students could use any materials they wanted to create a mask of their choice. I showed them examples of masks from around the world beforehand.

Some hot glued on additions, such as cut out cereal boxes, parts from egg cartons, cardboard tubes, etc.  I like to emphasize 'reuse & recycle' in my classroom, like most Art teachers do! I also keep on hand loads of 'crafty' materials (sequins, plastic jewels, glitter, feathers, etc). These were spray varnished at the end.

In my sample, I hot glued on a cut cereal box to add height.

Open up a paper clip and hot glue it to the back for a simple hanger.

Ta da!

My sample: I was going for an Indonesian style mask.


Unknown said...

I've not done masks before and am a relatively new art teacher. After the initial mold is finished what material do you use (other than cardboard) to build details such as nose, brows, ears, etc.? Do you continue to use the plaster strips or could we use a newspaper flour/water mix or even toilet paper glue mix. The plaster strips don'e seem as pliable. I am starting these soon so please respond soon. Thank you for sharing.

Miss said...

Hi missart: the plastic face molds themselves have the eyes, eyebrows and noses already, so those details come out with the plaster.
If you want to add to these, or exaggerate them, then yes, you could just tape on scrunched up newspaper/paper towel and cover that with the plaster strips.
Good luck!

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