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Fall Session Paper Mache

May 24, 2019

Hello everyone!

Last week we introduced you to our large scale clay carving and sculpting project for fall!
Read it here if you missed it!

Thank you, thank you, thank you again to all who voiced their feedback and advice through our class feedback form. We hear that parents and students would like to see some new mediums to explore and we love that idea, too!

And so we came up with a fantastical idea… The Fine Art of Papier Mâché Owls!

As many of you have noticed, we really, really love to redecorate. Since we started in 2005 we have changed around the studio maybe a thousand timesat least! We love to create beautiful spaces and cozy corners; a place for students to feel welcomed and inspired. One of our favourite ways to do this is with lots of art around our studios (of course!) You may have noticed a happy Papier Mâché fish smiling in the window of your studio, or perhaps a cute family of Papier Mâché cats snuggled up on the wooden shelves. These were made to inspire our students in our Frida Kahlo Artist Focus class.

Here are the top 3 inspirations for this project at 4Cats!



Our first inspiration is the great artist Frida Kahlo and her famous muralist husband, Diego Rivera. Frida and Diego created beautiful homes for themselves, full of art and inspiration. Frida lived in her lovely little Blue House; here, the backyard garden sat square in the middle of the house, and the windows opened onto endless flowers, trees, and all the animals that lived in the courtyard! Frida loved animals; she had cats, dogs, deer, and even a monkey! She filled every room in her home with paintings, sculpture and... Papier Mâché! Diego lived in a big Pink House right next to Frida, connected by a bridge. His house was also stuffed with paintings, statues, and even more Papier Mâché made by him and his many artist friends!



Papier Mâché has been around for a long timea really long time! Back in ancient Egypt, layers of papyrus, linen, and plaster were used to make tombs and masks. Today, we can sculpt with paper by building on armatures, or skeletons. We use lots of cool materials like wire, mesh, or forms to help build amazing shapes and fantastical creations.

Plus, in the this project, the Papier Mâché will be combined with watercolours! Students will learn watercolour techniques used to add colour and texture used for this project. The high quality, cold press watercolour paper helps to provide even washes and good lifts with wet media techniques. They will learn the difference between painting wet on wet and wet on dry, all about monochromatic versus split-complementary colour schemes, transparency, dabbing (no, not the dance!), blotting, glazing, hard edges, blooms, and how to use a speckling brush, which is basically the funnest brush ever invented.



Why, owls of course! Did you know a group of owls is called a parliament? We can thank C.S. Lewis for that one, when he described a meeting of owls in the Chronicles of Narnia. How cool! Owls are incredible creatures, and we love to make incredible things here at 4Cats.

Here are some more owl facts:


This is the perfect project for students who want to be challenged, learn sculpture and watercolour skills, and bring a beautiful creature to life. Plus, if this owl looks a little complicated for your child, we have project variations designed for different levels of challenge! So stay tunedWe’ll be sharing some of our other Papier Mâché creations on the blog in the coming weeks!

And remember! Every class will now conclude with a gallery show of the incredible art that students created that day, so parents will be able to watch the creative process as the Papier Mâché owls begin to take flight.

PLEASE COME INTO THE STUDIO AFTER CLASS! WE REALLY, REALLY, REALLY love having parents come into the studio, our students are so excited to show off their new skills and projects! This time is also a great opportunity for asking questions of students and teachers alike, and learning together about the wonderful process of art here in our studio.

Ok, well have a great day everyone! :) We are off to do some more paper speckling!

See you at the studio! 


BOOK by selecting your location from the drop-downs below

*Please note the exploratory classes are not yet available at the following studios:
Albert Park, Halifax, Linfield, Montgomery, Meadowvale, Port Credit,South Surrey, Summerside, Saskatoon, Vimont & Whitby.