Kid’s Art: Root Creatures

bird made from root and paintEma, Adia and I made some really cool creatures using roots we found on the lakeshore. We picked them up because we thought each of these looked at least vaguely critter-like. Today we painted several of the roots to try to bring out the little features in the wood that looked like something or another. How do you like them now?

Root CreaturesWe have a horse, a gnome, an elephant-deer-bird, and another bird — a long-legged crane.

The following tutorial was written by Ema and Adia:

Have you ever wanted to make an imaginary creatures? Well here’s how. All you need is a few sticks and some paint. You can make whatever you can imagine when you look at the sticks.

You will need:

  • sticks, driftwood or roots
  • hot glue*
  • acrylic paint**
  • brushes
  • something to use for bases for the creatures that will stand up*** …. or
  • tiny eye hooks and some monofilament for creatures that will fly (hang)

EmasHorseCollage-imp

I got a funky root and I kept turning it and turning it and looking at it from different angles and then I saw that it looked like a horse. So I painted it to look like a red roan horse, specifically my favorite horse, Rosebud, who lives at my Grandma’s house in Anaconda. I glued mine onto the base instead of drilling a hole because it stands up by itself.  — Ema, age 10

Gnome by Adia, age 8

Gnome by Adia, age 8

I made a gnome. A gnome is a little person with a beard. Santa Claus is a gnome. My gnome has a really tall red hat and is walking across the log that is my base. One leg is shorter than the other because he is walking. He also has a really long white beard and tall white boots. I drilled a hole in the base and glued my gnome’s longest leg into the hole. He looks like Santa. — Adia, age 8

MaureensCrane-imp

One of my roots looked exactly like a long, curved-bill crane so I made a fantasy bird that I named, an “oo-ooga crane.” This is the sound it makes when it’s happy. It has green and blue feathers with white spots. Also some yellow and orange eyes. I glued one of the crane’s legs into a hole in the walnut base. — Maureen

Elephant Deer Bird Detail

Maureen's Elephant Deer-Bird

My other root reminded me of an elephant with wings. It has big long trunk, two skinny wings and a tail. I added little antlers so it’s an elephant-deer-bird. I painted the antlers blue because the Huichol Blue Deer is special to me. This one hangs from the ceiling because it’s flying. I screwed in a tiny eye-hook and hung the bird by a piece of monofilament. — Maureen

NOTES FROM THE TUTORIAL AND SUPPLY LIST:

*We used a little hot glue to attach odds and ends of roots to our creatures.

**For painting the creatures, you don’t have to completely cover the surface of the wood with paint. Leaving some of the natural wood showing looks really cool.

***If you want to make bases, cut some nice wood in a square or rectangle or any shape. Sand it so it’s nice and smooth. Sand the edges to make them roundish so they aren’t sharp. Figure out if you want to drill a hole or just glue on your creature onto the base. We made our bases out of scraps of walnut wood, the trees that grow actual walnuts on them.

root creatures11-improot creatures10-imp

 

Below, we have a few other roots we haven’t painted yet. We are going to keep making these creatures. One of these roots is going to become a flying dragon with a tail made of smoke and fire coming out of its mouth. What do you see in these?  Please let us know in the comments.

Driftwood Root Driftwood Root Driftwood Root

Driftwood Root

 

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