Chinese Terracotta Warriors Reproduced in Paper Mache – Guest Post

Terra Cotta Warrior in Paper Mache

We have another guest post today by Cory Triplett, a grade school teacher who uses paper mache and other art forms to help his students learn about other cultures and their history. Cory’s class recently made a bigger-than-life-sized Terracotta Warrior, made with paper mache. I’ll link to his other posts below the gallery so you can see a few of the other projects he and his students have made.

By the way, you’re about to see a photo of Cory covered in plastic wrap, and then plastic tape.  I personally would  not recommend allowing anyone to cover your face with plastic unless they really know what you’re doing. Cory explains how this part was done in a comment below the post.

Now, I’ll let Cory take it from here …

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©2015 Cory Triplett

How We Made a Terracotta Warrior With Paper Mache

The 6th grade students finished studying ancient China and were fascinated with the idea that so many Terracotta warriors could be buried, untouched for so many years. When, I brought up the idea of building a life-sized (or bigger), paper mache warrior for our annual History Fair, the entire class was ecstatic!

The fun began when the students got the chance to wrap their courageous art teacher with saran wrap and clear packaging tape to create an armature. Next, student helped stuff the armature with newspaper. The 6th grade class then helped add several layers of paper mache. I then went in an added the details. Finally it was time to paint. The 6th graders did the base painting and I went in to complete project. This project took us about 2 months to complete. The Terracotta Warrior was quite popular during the History Fair.

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Thanks, Cory!

For more projects by Cory and his class, click the links below:

10 thoughts on “Chinese Terracotta Warriors Reproduced in Paper Mache – Guest Post

  1. Cory, that is fabulous. A great idea. I watched a special on the soldiers the other day and was thinking of paper mache, but your thoughts were much bigger! Great job, and you have some lucky and talented students.

  2. OK Cory – how the heck did you breathe with all that plastic over your face??? (Fabulous project, by the way. Your students are so lucky to have you as a teacher.)

    • I have done the body wrapping on multiple occasions. First, you need to wrap the desired area with plastic wrap. Then, you need to cover the plastic with many layers of clear packaging tape, until your reach your desired thickness. Next, carefully cut the mold open in an inconspicuous area (down the backside). Don’t but the piece completely in half, on cut enough so the model can get out. Finally tape the opening back together.

      When it comes to the head, I would recommend wearing a stocking cap. Cover the entire head and neck with saran wrap, but DO NOT cover the mouth or nose areas. Again, wrap all areas with packing tape (not the mouth or nose). Please be careful when covering the neck, do not pull the tape too tight. When the head and neck are covered, carefully cut up the neck and up the back of the head. Now the mold should be able to slip on an off the head with ease. To complete the nose and mouth areas I would hold my breath and allow someone to quickly cove the areas, stopping to take a breath of fresh whenever I felt I needed one. DO NOT try to hold

        • Cory, your project really helps make history come alive, but I would not put myself in a place where I would be history. I think if you made a plaster of paris mold of your head and neck that would stand in for your own head and neck and the possibility of an accident is down way down. But on the whole, I agree your students are very lucky to have you as a teacher as you do inspire them. This is beautiful.

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