Keep Your Head In The Stars

   by Amanda Morehead for Build A Dream (2014)

In order to build my project I decided to dab some water on the corn starch biodegradable packing peanuts and stick them to a balloon in order to start the template for a child’s face. Then I used the plaster cloth wrap to make the entire structure of the head. I also used another balloon and the same technique to help build the chin and neck. After the plaster hardened I popped both balloons and removed them. Then I used a box cutter to saw off the top of the head. However, I did not have enough plaster cloth to complete the head so I peeled the layers of the cardboard box apart and ripped them into pieces so that I could glue them to the surface to build up the bottom and top pieces of the head. I wanted to use the Van Aken Modeling clay on the surface so it would be like the texture of skin but I only had a limited amount so I wanted to glue as much cardboard down as possible to get the shape I wanted and a smoother surface before adding the clay. I also created a lining for the inside of the head out of cardboard and used cardboard to fold over the edges so that you could not see between the layers of the inside and outside of the head. Next a cardboard hinge was created and pieces of the wooden dowel were placed in the middle of the hinge to secure the top of the head in place.

The aluminum wire was weaved into a pattern of loops and coils that represent the creation of a dream. I propped the head up using the Styrofoam rod as a base to connect the head to the board and used the base from the mannequin to attach the Styrofoam rod to the tempered hardboard and give the head more support. The latter was out of 3 of the square basswood dowels. Remaining pieces of the 12” X .375” were used to stabilize the base. Canvas cloth cut into pieces and glued together to make shirt, then painted black , wire mesh folded underneath for structure. Cut contest rules pamphlet so that staples remained in tact and glued on paper to make books of life. Painted mannequin clothes and glued mannequin in place on latter. Used left over cloth clippings and paper to make bag for books, used my hands to mold face. Ripped sea sponge for natural affect and glued as hair. Various paints for base design and shirt, face/head design.

There are so many aspects that go into building a child’s dreams. People say get your head out of the clouds, well I say never take it out, reach beyond the clouds to the stars and dream as big as you can. I believe that life is made up of a bunch of patterns and every experience in your life affects you. Every single thing you learn, hear, see, or experience sends you in a different direction. Every person that you meet also has an affect on you and changes the direction you are going in life. When I think of building a dream I think, of a blank slate or canvas that awaits completion. Waiting to be painted with Imagination, faith, education, spontaneity, passion, hard work and perseverance.