Outside In: Ready, Steady, Make!

Welcome to the FrostArt ‘Outside In’ blog, thank you for joining in. If you have ideas that you would like to try let me know and they could be included.

It would be great to see what is made, so please take pictures of what you make and we can share them here.

For most of workshop activities you are likely to need some tools and materials. Collect them together and put them in a box or drawer will mean you know where they are each time. A box for indoor making and one for outdoors might be a good idea too if you have space.

For inside

An apron
Waterproof covering for table or floor
a tray or shoe box
an old basket or container for collecting things outside

Tools and materials

Spoons – large and small
An old blunt knife
A piece of paper, a camera or phone
Pencils and crayons in a box or pencil case

For outside

A coat and hat, gloves or sunshade, depending on the weather
Outdoor shoes
A cushion or rug to sit on, if you are going to stay outside.
A board to lean on
A trowel
A garden fork
A container to collect things

Indoor activities

Make a container – This container will be useful for collecting things outdoors or to hold your tools in.
You will need
An old plastic 2 or 5 litre container, deionised water comes in them, tomato feed for gardeners, or liquid soaps.
A long boot lace, with plastic ends
A knitting needle or BBQ skewer
A marker pen – Sharpies work well but be careful where you write as they don’t wash off.
Make time about 20 minutes

Draw a line with marker pen round the container, 150mm from base. Cut round the line with scissors, making a hole with the knitting needle might help to start it off. 

With the knitting needle or skewer make a hole at each end of the bottle 30mm from top of the container.

Thread one end of the the boot lace through a hole from the inside, tie a knot so it doesn’t slip out. Thread the other end from the outside and tie a knot inside the container.

If the lace is very long for you, make knot where it fits and cut the remainder off., or you could make a loop and tie it there.

Keep the plastic lid, and put it in the container you have made.

Make a picture frame
You will need
Some stiff paper or cardboard – an old cereal box will work
A ruler or envelope
A pencil or pen
Make time about 10 minutes
Draw a square on the plain side of the card, use an envelope or another piece of card for straight lines if you haven’t got a ruler nearby.

Cut the inside of the square out, fold it or poke the scissors inside first to start it off.

Now you can go out collecting with both the things you have made.

Outdoor activity of course depends on the weather and where you are.
Outside in spring there is a lot happening, it could be very small, or high in the air or very low down on the ground.
Move slowly as you go outside, small creatures get frightened of people moving fast.
Take 5 minutes to find a place you like the look of, an area of about 2 metres square or a circle as far as you can reach with your feet when you sit down.
Is anything moving? What is it, animal, insect, bird, flowers or trees, earth, stick or stone? Do you know what the name is? Best not pick up or touch, just watch for 2 minutes. You might use a stop watch.
Use the picture frame you made to frame the things you are looking at.
You could draw a picture, or take time to look at what is happening.
Can you see any more of the same, or maybe some different things. How many different things are there in the space you have selected?
Look at the colours and shapes and textures. You could touch gently, how does it feel, is it soft or hard, cold or warm, wet or dry?
Can you identify the creatures, or flowers. Do they have names you know?
If you like writing you could write a story about the place, what and who lives there?
If you like talking you might do a recording about the things you see.
If you like drawing you could draw what you see in the frame, or make a picture using found things on a flat surface. Place the things you find in the frame and maybe take photos.

Use the container when you are ready to go back inside you might pick up a few things to take indoors, put them carefully in your container using the plastic lid if it is crawly or squirmy.

Always put creatures back outside when you have looked at them, they prefer to live outdoors where you found them.