Simple is Often the Best Solution
Problem: Need a platform that can hold a small still life as well as cut out visual background “noise” so students can focus on the objects while drawing from direct observation.
Solution: Easy DIY Folder Background for Small Still Life Drawings
I have been teaching drawing for 15 years now and have struggled with a system of setting up small still life arrangements for a classroom full of kids. Coupled by the continual rotation of different grade classes coming into my room on a daily basis, this DIY Folder Background works because I can’t leave the still life arrangements on my tables for more than one class period.
Last year I had an Ah-ha moment-EASY ART TEACHER HACK! Make a semi-hard backdrop out of collapsible manila folders that I can store easily and that is small enough to move to a side table until its time to use them again.
How to make Easy DIY Folder Backgrounds:
1. Open a manila folder. On the fold, use a triangle shape template to draw the outline of a right triangle.
2. Use an Exacto knife to cut ONLY the bottom (on the fold) and the diagonal line.
3. Fold the 90 degree angle back. Its helpful to have a straight edge (like a ruler or the triangle template) against the edge for folding a straight line.
4. Repeat the process again, but face the triangle in the opposite direction. 5. Use a glue stick to apply glue to the surface of the manila folder EXCEPT where the triangles are.
6. Glue black and gray papers onto the manila folders one to each side of the inside of the folder.7. Allow to dry for at least an hour before use.
8. If the folder doesn’t want to stand up, add a clip onto one of the triangles or to the side to help pull the weight backwards.
Designed and written by Michelle C. East, copyright 2018. If you choose to use any of this lesson either written or photos, please link back to this post at Create Art with ME.