Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I'll Stop the World and Melt Plastic With You

Fifi made some fuse bead projects recently for friends' birthdays. She wanted to make her friends' initials somehow. It was pretty easy to craft an I in the middle of a pegboard, but a D required some help. Once the letters were done, I figured she was good to go with filling in the rest of the forms. But as I watched her work, placing color wheel neighbors adjacent to one another, letting the bold monograms blend indecipherably within a sea of similar colors, I realized a little coaching might be helpful.

As I told her about contrast and showed her colors that played well together, I was reminded of a great color theory activity we had done once over at the Click Magazine website. I'm a huge fan of the Cricket Magazine family and have often used the supplementary activities they include on their website. I thought it was pretty awesome they had written an article about Josef Albers for kids. We then spent some time on the website pairing up different colored squares to see how a color such as red can look completely different when it's within a field of bold green versus a soft gray.

Fifi then aimed to have the monograms stand out, but she faced some challenges from the limited fuse bead palette and her four year-old desire to simply use a color because she liked it. But in the end, she came up with a couple of personalized gifts that reflect her eccentricities and the chemistry of melted plastic.

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