"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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Monday, July 27, 2015

Foil Embossing: tin foil and Sharpies

This was a super fun project my Grades 4- 6 mixed elective class did at the end of this school year. They LOVED this project- some even made 2 or 3. I pretty much followed the excellent instructions posted HERE on the "We Heart Art" blog. She found the idea on the Fine Lines blog. 

I was worried we would have to use that chunky yarn (of which I had none) but regular yarn worked well. I collect empty cereal boxes from my students all year long and stockpile them for projects such as these. Students drew some type of abstract pattern on the card. I encouraged them to use shapes as opposed to open lines as we would be colouring these in. Of course some did non-abstract images and some used some open lines and they all worked out regardless :)

Once the lines were drawn, students passed over the lines using regular white glue. Then they put pieces of yarn on top. We let these dry overnight.

It's important to use heavy duty aluminium foil for this next step. It's just sturdier and thicker.

Students cut a piece off the roll that was about an inch larger than their cardboard.

Then they covered the back of the tin foil liberally with a glue stick. They need to use ALOT and do it carefully in one direction so the foil doesn't bunch up and rip. Other blogs used spray glue for this step but I didn't have any- the glue stick worked pretty well.
Then put the foil over-top and, starting from the center, gently rub over the design using a small square of felt. It really works for buffing the foil over the yarn. Take your time with this step- the more you carefully rub around the yarn, the better the final artwork will work. Some students tended to rush this step.

Once it's all glued down, I show students how to neatly wrap the foil onto the back- a technique I used during my book-making phase ;)

Then the fun part: colouring the whole image with coloured Sharpies!
Don't colour the raised yarn part.
Here are Grades 4 - 6 results:


This students did 2: one using cool colours and one using warm colours


BLAST said...

Another great idea from a great blog! We tried this out on paper plates; see the results at http://penarthblast.blogspot.co.uk/

Miss said...

Thanks! Your kids did a great job- I love the idea of using a paper plate. You can then tie in radial design, etc.

Anonymous said...

My Sharpie pens won't stay on the foil, they just pretty much evaporate or wipe off! IS there something you did to prepare the foil? Thanks

Miss said...

Anonymous: I didn't do anything at all to the foil. Make sure you're using permanent markers. Aluminum foil tends to have one side less shiny than the other (slightly duller). Try colouring on that side and see if it helps.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't get the sharpies to work either but then I bought another mark of aluminum foil and it worked.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful! I'm a grown up and going to do it myself!

Anonymous said...

Wow... Amazing....great idea.

Miss said...

Anonymous #1: good tip. I had no idea different brands of aluminum foil would react differently to the Sharpies. I buy heavy duty barbecue foil.

Anonymous #2: I made one and it was super fun! Definitely try it!

Anonymous #3: thanks! This project was not my idea but it was fun!

Visual Arts in Tanzania (Sanaa Tanzania) said...

Hello Miss! thanks for sharing the project, I am going to do it with my students of grade 5 as the summer project, I hope warm colours' theme will work perfectly.

Anonymous said...

My students had a great time doing this activity!! Thank you!

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