As much as I love new, shiny things, I draw an incredible amount of satisfaction out of ‘making new out of old’; I can’t stand too much clutter but don’t like waste and I am not keen on throwing stuff out. Sometimes I (fleetingly) have a guilty conscience about producing more material stuff than the world needs – but isn’t that what Art is about to a certain extent? However, some of my best paintings have been produced by recycling old paintings and I really quite like the idea that only I know the real story (literally) behind that particular picture unless I choose to share it.
I think it is particularly important to think about these things these days and try and consider how we can reduce the amount of waste we produce or how we can use the materials we have around us to be creative or even produce something useful. For this reason, it is one aspect I try to incorporate into my Art-CLIL ideas.
Just recently I created the MacBook leather sleeve below with a friend who had the sewing expertise and a good machine, from leftover leather pieces which can be bought fairly cheaply or you can sometimes get pieces for nothing from furniture shops. This got me thinking further and now I am the proud owner of about half a cubic metre of high quality furniture covering samples and feel a little overwhelmed! But no matter, it means that I am well-equipped if any students want to try something similar. I reckon my next step will be a sewing machine.
Many kids would never have the opportunity to even try sewing on a sewing machine if they don’t try it at school.
I have some more ‘new from old’ ideas but I’ll report about those another day!