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Re: Plaster Masks/Canvas


From: Bunki Kramer (bkramer_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sun Nov 03 2002 - 18:51:08 PST

from: Bunki Kramer (
Los Cerros Middle School
968 Blemer Road
Danville, CA 94526

From: "The Austin's" <>

Bunki and Sharon (and anyone else who has done this) - I have two immature,
challenging high school classes this year. I need to challenge them and I
think the plaster masks attached to canvas is the trick. How did you attach
the plaster masks to the canvas? Hot glue? Also, any tricks or problems I
should be aware of before I begin? I've done the plaster masks before but
want the students to have to think abit more! :-)
The masks on the canvas board was a real motivating project for my
kiddos...even the ones (like Sharon's) who don't get excited about much. The
kids cut the masks edges evenly and Elmer-glued them to the canvas. Our
canvas boards didn't warp at all except for those who REALLY used VERY wet
tissue-glue mixture for added shaping and building up areas. A little bit of
caution and the boards don't warp.

The canvas board was actually pretty cheap if you buy it at You can get unusual sizes there too. You can also use the
pre-made masks out of those paper-plaster molds and the kids can re-shape
them with additive mixtures.

The only problem I had at the end was to attach a backing string at the
appropriate place because the weight of the board changes as you add weight
mixture in different places on the mask and board. In other words, you just
can't add a string backing in the middle of the back of the board. You have
to see where the weight balances.

If I did it again, I'd use the canvas board instead of the plywood like
Sharon. The canvas board is lighter, you don't need to get it cut, and it
has a good surface for painting without having to prime it first. You should
try it diff. ways and see what YOU like best. Toodles....Bunki