Made by Susan Furmage
My 11-year-old daughter needed to make a mask for her drama class at school. She wanted to build it out of paper mache. Considering that we were complete paper mache novices, Jonni’s tutorials were an absolute godsend for us, especially her three videos about how to make a Commedia del Arte Pantalone mask! Even though we went for a full face mask, rather than a half-mask like Pantalone, we used the basic ideas that Jonni shares in the videos: building on a mask form, covering it with strong plastic, using modelling clay to create the features, etc. During the two-week mask-making process, we referred back to Jonni’s videos and the Ultimate Paper Mache website time and time again.
A particular challenge in building a mask for my daughter is that she wears glasses, so we needed to create a mask that allowed her to wear her glasses under the mask. As you can see in the additional photo, we solved that challenge by covering an old pair of her glasses in plastic wrap and placing them on the mask form. We then used modelling clay to fill in the gaps between the form and the glasses. We also ran a bit of extra clay along the arms of the glasses to make sure there was plenty of room at the sides. It worked a treat!
Thank you so much, Jonni, for your friendly help, guidance and expertise. Thanks to you, I believe we can consider our first paper mache mask attempt a big success!