I want to have a contest. The details haven’t been worked out yet, so I hope you’ll help me figure out how to make this work.
[edit: The contest idea quickly morphed into a reader-supported project. You can read about it here. You can see what we’ve come up with so far here. And you can also pretty much ignore the rest of this post… 🙂 ]
Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:
- I’d like the
contestproject to be limited to ideas/examples/tutorials for using paper mache for practical objects. By “practical,” I mean that the finished project will be more than purely decorative – beautiful as well as functional should get extra points, of course. (Points? – another issue that hasn’t been worked out).
- I’d like the ideas to be useful to people with limited means. I think extra points should go to ideas that could make life better for someone living in a tar-paper shack, and equally useful for someone living in suburbia.
A few examples of practical paper mache: The Chinese once used laminated paper to make military helmets, the French made furniture that still sells for big bucks on eBay, and the Japanese (when they don’t have other things to worry about) repair baskets so they can go on using them instead of throwing them away. Those are just a few of the hundreds of things that can be made with paper mache. If we put our minds to it, we can come up with many more than that.
My hope is that the
contest project will create a body of work that would be useful to people from all walks of life. This blog gets as many as 2,000 readers a day from all over the world – which means that your idea could travel to places you may have never heard of. Even if you don’t officially win, your idea could be exactly what someone thousands of miles away needs to make their life easier. How cool is that?
Since laminated paper (paper layered together with paste or glue) is the strongest form of paper mache, I think we should limit the ideas to that form. It’s also the form of paper mache that is accessible to almost everyone, since the supplies are so cheap.
Anyone who submits a practical paper mache project will need to understand that their idea will be published here on this blog, and once ideas show up here they tend to take on a life of their own.
OK – your turn. How do you think we could make this work? Do you think it would be fun? Start writing in the comment section below. (Be sure to add comments here on the blog instead of sending me an email, so everyone can read your ideas.)