Thursday, January 29, 2009

From Table to Tableau

You know how sometimes you just get the urge to try something new you've only read about? That was me today.

I spent this morning running errands after being stuck in the house all day yesterday from yet another snowstorm that dropped 10" of the unwelcomed stuff on my doorstep. WOULD SOMEBODY PULEEEZ SHUT IT OFF???
But I digress.....

Anyway, as I was running thru the supermarket, I decided to grab a quick-but-healthy "take-out" lunch from the "meals to go" section. A bit of salad, alittle veggie sushi...
Later, as I sat down to eat (in front of the tv so I could watch my favorite HGTV show), I suddenly had a flash from somewhere in my memory banks. I thought I remembered reading somewhere (probably on the web) that you can re-use those plastic take-out containers to make shrink art. They are, in effect, very similar to the shrink plastic you can buy to make jewelry, embellishments, etc. Hmmm....
Sooo.....since my ever-so-healthy lowfat lunch was staring at me thru two of those containers (btw, I didn't eat it ALL--good grief), I decided that after I wiped the traces of soy sauce off my chin and Clive Pearce had declared the house "Designed to Sell", I would head up to the studio to try it out for myself!

Now I did remember that for this to work, the little "recycle" symbol stamped on the bottom of the container had to have the number "6" inside the little triangle of arrows. Any other number won't work (so I read). I checked my containers---yes, it did! Woo Hoo!
So I pulled out my scissors and cut up the cover of my sushi container. I sanded it in two directions with a fine sanding block (one of those spongy thingys) to help the ink grab and stamped it using pigment ink.
Yea....that didn't work so hot. The ink started to travel and pool, not sure why. I just let it dry then grabbed a Sharpie marker (these work GREAT!) and filled in the areas--which was easy since it was a simple diamond pattern stamp.

Then I just doodled and messed around with more Sharpie markers and some colored pencils. This was an experiment so I didn't have too may expectations. I used Staz-On ink to stamp the face but even that tended to spreadout. Maybe I didn't sand it enough. But it still looked kinda cool. After I was done "doodling", I cut out my design and zapped it with my heat gun.
It sure didn't take long to start curling up and at one point I thought, "yeah....right....this ISN"T going to work" since it was curling up fairly tight and was a bit of a mess. But I decided, "when in doubt, just keep heating" and you know, it DID finally start to flatten out! I kinda thought it would melt before that happened but it didn't. I did flip it over and heated the other side to get it really flat and when I was done, I even put a book on it to make sure. The neat thing is that if you flip it over to the non sanded/colored side, it has a really nice gloss to it. Wow!
I'm pretty excited that it worked! There is a minor wrinkle in the face but it shrunk to a bit more than 50% of the original size so it's not very noticeable. Wouldn't you know that I completely forgot to punch anchor holes in it before I heated it so guess I'll have to get out the Dremel tool and drill.

But the REAL reason I'm so excited? Yet another reason to order take-out!

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