3-D Initials

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					3-D Initials
(After completing this lesson what will students know and be able
to do?)
• Design a tribute to themselves, a friend, or family member
       using initials
• Develop various solutions through thumbnail sketches for
       combining initials into one cohesive unit
• Create a 3-D sculpture implementing the techniques
       demonstrated by teacher for working with poster board,
       tape, and paper mache
• Illustrate character traits using non-objective decoration in
• Evaluate their own thoughts and craftsmanship through critique

poster board
masking tape
dixie cups or index cards
mixing cups

PowerPoint presentation on Robert Indiana sculptures.
 Discussion on likes and dislikes about this kind of art. How is
this different than what we typically think of when we hear

• Ask students to decide who they want to pay tribute to with this
     project. What is that person like? What sort of personality
     do they have? What can you convey about that person
        simply by the way their initials look?
•   Hand out newsprint and pencils. Fold the paper in 4. Come up
        with 4 different ways of connecting the initials to create one
        solid piece. (Warn students that very tiny, skinny openings
        or parts of letters are ok but will be more difficult to
        contend with when constructing the piece and applying
        paper mache.) Choose the design that best represents the
•   Give student a full piece of poster board. Fold in half (the short
        way). Enlarge your design to take up as much of the space
        as possible.
•   Cut out initials, cutting both pieces at once, creating the front
        and back of your sculpture (we put a few staples to keep
        everything nice and straight...they were then pulled
        out...no need to worry about the holes).
•   Using dixie cups and masking tape, create the infrastructure of
        your sculpture. (If you have no money to buy dixie cups,
        ask your secretary for index cards. You can curl them into
        circles and tape them. Slightly more time consuming, but
        worked just as well if not better.) Tape cups first to one set
        of initials, covering as much area as possible. (The more
        support the sculpture has, the better it will hold up if you
        have a student who loves to pile on the paper mache.)
•   Line up the second set of initials to create the second face, and
        tape the cups down on the inside.
•   Measure the width of your sculpture (the height of the cups)
        and cut strips of poster board to the same size. Using
        sections of the strips, cover all of the sides of your
        sculpture. Straight sections are easier than curved ones to
        start with, but just work your way around the entire piece.
         Don't forget the insides of letters with openings, like "O" or
•   Tear newsprint into small pieces and paper mache the entire
        sculpture. (You can use newspaper or any other thin paper,
        however we had no money in our budget for gesso, and
        using newsprint eliminated the problem of the lettering on
        the newspaper showing through our paints).
•   Once paper mache is dry, paint away! Decide what symbols or
        patterns will help emphasize your person's character.

Have students view their peers sculptures. What do they say
about each individual being portrayed? Can you learn something
about the person based on this tribute to them?

Ask students to complete the student portion of the attached
Teacher then completes rubric.