Crayon Sculpture: 100 Item Project

For my hundred item project, I made three towers out of crayons. One large tower and two smaller towers. I used about 350 crayons. During this assignment, I learned that even though I am only using one material, the possibilities are endless. I had the chance to experiment with the material, I used two different types of glue and a lot of tapes. To complete the sculpture I used masking tape to form a circle out of crayons, then I used a lot of Yes! glue to hold the crayons in place. Then I added crayons inside the circle to add support and to make sure that the structure was stable. Next, I would build another crayon circle but slightly smaller and glue it on top of the larger circle. I would continue that process until it got to the height I wanted. Originally I thought that building this sculpture would be very easy. I thought that I would use a hot glue gun and perfectly glue all the pieces together. I also thought that the wrappers on the crayons would come off very easily. I was wrong, the process of taking off the wrappers and building the sculpture was very difficult. The hot glue did not work because it would melt the crayon and it would fall off. Using masking tape to tape the crayons it to a circle was also very difficult, the crayons would never go into a perfect circle and they would never stay up straight. However, with a lot of persistence, I was able to glue the crayons into a circle. I thought that during this process I did a really good job of making sure the crayons stayed in a perfect circle, and I also did a good job of making sure that the crayons did not break. If I had to make this again, I would try to make the sculpture look less messy. I wouldn’t want the glue to show. I would also want to make sure the cuts in the crayons (from taking off the wrappers) don’t show. I think for the next project I want to try out different methods for making something. When making this sculpture I stuck to one method. To achieve that goal for the next project before starting the final product, I should try out different methods, and find the best one.

Wire Sculpture Artist Statement

Wire Sculpture Artist Statement

Sculpture: A

Michael Mendelson


The candle that I have made resembled a piece of my families history. My great grandparents had an old candle that we use on special holidays. We always use the candle in its old wax drip catcher. The candle was very dear to my grandparents so that is why we only light it on special holidays because we want the candle to last for a long time. My grandparents got the candle on their 50th anniversary from my grandfathers brother who got the candle from a magician Poland. The magician said that the candle would bring good will to all who lit it. The candle was carefully handcrafted out of basil and thyme and it burns for up to 235 hours.


I was able to make this candle sculpture by getting a thicker wire that can bend easily. The sculpture took lots of planning and multiple tries. I tried to make the candle in three different designs but only one of them truly looked the way I wanted it to look. I made the shaft of the candle by bending a wire and making into a coil. I made the flame of the candle by bending a short wire into a flame type shape. I attached the flame to the shaft of the candle by bending a thinner wire into a loop. Then I stuck the flame into the loop and then attached the loop to the coil. I made the wax drip catcher by making a tight coil to the bottom and then I popped the rest of the coil out to make the bowl shape.



Benny’s Artist Statement

For my soap sculpture project I choose to sculpt an item symbolizing my connection to my hometown, New York City. My goal was to incorporate values of home and belonging into my piece. I feel like I will always keep the values of my city close to me and think no matter where I live it will remain my home. I placed the empire state building in the palm of my hand to symbolize the place my city has in my heart. In carving the empire state building the biggest conceptual challenge I dealt with was making sure I didn’t carve away too much of the soap when showing the different levels of the building. I wanted to carve away large chunks of soap at a time in order to make my sculpture smoother and make the carving go faster. This resulted in my soap cracking or having chunks break off because i tried to rush the process. In order to get the exact cuts you want it’s imperative you go really slow when carving and shave off tiny pieces. I think my approach to carving the soap, after realizing I could only carve little pieces at a time, was very good. I marked which parts of the soap should be carved to a certain extent and tried to make sure they were carved equally on each side. My final piece is slightly lopsided, but I still think it’s fairly recognizable. If I had the chance to do it again I think I could make each side even because I learned that, when trying to carve four equal sides, what you carve away fro one side takes away from the other.


Trinity Knot


For this piece I set out to create a trinity knot, a traditional Celtic symbol, out of a book. For the piece I found a technique, which involved folding the pages of books in trapezoids of various sizes and angles to create lines that in the video, wrote words. In this case I wanted to create a symbol and the technique worked all the same to do that. The first step in creating the symbol in the book is to put the image you want to create into Photoshop and then run as many vertical lines through the image that its width will allow. With this template you must now select the book with the right amount of pages for all the folds. This is the part I struggled most with because I wanted to center the symbol as well as I could in the book but calculating the exact number of folds proved to be difficult and sometimes the numbering of the book’s pages was done irregularly throwing off the calculation. This was the problem I encountered with my second book where I even knew the exact amount of fold that I needed. Next by folding the corners to the outline of the part of the symbol I was trying to create over and over I was able to create the knot. If I was to go about any aspect of the piece differently I would without a doubt try to center the symbol in the book’s pages better. All in all I am very pleased with the way the symbols came out in the books, but my only disappointments with the piece is their placement.


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Wire Clothespin


For my wire sculpture I set out to create a visual representation of a clothespin using various widths of wire. To do this I first had to visualize the shape of the actual object and using contour drawing, create a large-scale model of my object. After finding the best way to assemble to wire, I created four large sidewalls to the two clamps of the clothespin. From there I made smaller brackets to hold the walls together. I also used thinner wire to tie around the binding part of the bracket to keep the whole piece steady. With both clamps build I used thin wire to hold the two objects together. From there I used the thickest wire to build the coil in the center of the two clamps. The hardest aspect of the piece to execute was the inner coil. This was difficult because I did no make the clamps perfectly identical so the coil looked somewhat awkward lying unevenly in the clothespin. If I wanted to go about an aspect of the project in a different way, it would be to create more identical framework to build the clothespin with. This would have helped the rest of the piece come together in a more symmetrical way. I am very pleased with the way the piece came out and this piece was definitely the most difficult project of the year. I am very pleased to have a greater understanding of the pliability of wire.

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174 Cards

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With my piece I have created a chandelier made of 174 playing cards. Using specific cuts in the cards and hot glue for reinforcement I assembled various six pointed stars that could fit together to create the egg shape seen in the final piece. As well as additional cards and wiring, the structure stands by itself in the shape and is draped over a caged light bulb with a wire that allows the structure to be suspended from the ceiling. Building the structure took many steps. First I made specific incisions in four different decks of cards so they could fit together. Next I assembled the various six pointed stars. Following this I created two larger six pointed stars consisting of seven of the smaller stars. I fit the light cage through the center of one of the starts and folded the stars over the cage to enclose it. I used wire to reinforce the shape of the structure so it would not collapse. The final step was filling in the holes in the structure with the additional cards I had left over. I felt that if I avoided cutting the cards and just glued the cards together the whole time it could have come together much cleaner and been in a more exact shape. The way it is now, there are many apparent parts where the shapes don’t exactly come together. After the piece I would like to attempt something similar in the future, but use the techniques I learned and the reforms I would like to make it better. In the end I am very proud of the piece I have created and I feel it was a large step up from my last piece and has really expanded my thoughts on the kind of pieces I can build.


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Lips Soap Project


Sex trafficking is a major problem in our world, and it’s still discussed as a very taboo topic. It is being talked about a lot more in the news and social media lately, but it should be talked about a lot more seeing as how there are around 4.5 million people forced into sex trafficking according to the Polaris Project. In Chicago, many organizations have been making huge strides in stopping sex trafficking. One example is CAASE, according to their website they have recently passed the Justice for Victims of Sex Trafficking Crimes Act as well as being involved in locating many different sex trafficking rings. Despite all the great efforts made by CAASE and many of organizations like them, I felt as though the lack of conversation surrounding this topic is still an issue. That’s what lead me to creating lips with a barcode engraved on them because people who are forced into sex trafficking often have a barcode tattooed on them so that the rings can keep track of them. This project really helped me improve my sculpting techniques. Going in I didn’t know what kinds of tools to use or how to make different textures. After awhile, I learned how to smooth out certain parts and how to curve the lips. I did a pretty good job with going slow while sculpting. However, I didn’t do a great job with planning out what I wanted my sculpture to look like at the end. If I were to do it again I would do a better job of planning it out; I would do this by drawing all six sides of the end product and not just four sides. One part of this project that went pretty smoothly was the casting. I was lucky enough to only have to cast my hand once, and I found the process fairly easy. While working on this project I realized how relevant sculpture was in my everyday life. Just like how I need to go slow when I’m sculpting, I also need to take my time on tests and quizzes. 

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