Art students make wearable art


Lela Coker

Junior Mia Rice makes her paper mache head in Ceramics.

Codi Farmer, Staff Reporter

Following her annual tradition, art teacher Thao Roth’s Sculpture 2-4 classes and AP students are designing and building their own Halloween costumes. The project idea began when Art 1 classes made masks that covered their faces, but the project soon evolved into a much more grand idea.

“I think all the students who come into my sculpture class know that at some point we’re going to be making a bobble head,” Roth said. “It’s one of their favorite projects just because over the years they kind of look forward to it. They’ve seen students make it, they’ve sat around in Art 1 with them lying around the classroom and I think it’s something they usually look forward to.”

The students have been working on their wearable art for five weeks and they will be due at the end of this six weeks on Nov. 9. Roth, who made a seahorse bodysuit and bobble head said she spent two weeks on her own.

“I really like this project because there’s so much freedom with it,” Roth said. “The students can make anything with a face. I really like it because it’s the first real significant project of the year. It takes a while to make, but it pays off in the end.”

The students all come up with unique ideas ranging from sea animals to mythological creatures.

“I’ve been fascinated ever since I was a child with different types of mythology,” junior Bryce Wedlake, who is making a Native American Wendigo mask, said. “Greek, Hagen and Native American [which is] one of my favorites. They have all these fascinating myths.”

The freedom is a common favorite part of the project among many of the students. Senior Crystal Soto designed a hammerhead shark and junior Mia Rice is divulging in her interests by designing a decaying human head.

“[The idea] kind of came to me I guess,” Rice said. “Most people did animals and I didn’t want to do an animal, I wanted to make it more unique, really make it pop out.”

Over the years, Roth’s students continue to leave her in awe. She recounted a former student, Tori Rice, who transformed the classroom’s office into her own personal studio for the project.

“She made a life sized wedding dress out of tracing paper and wire and it just hung in my office,” Roth said. “It was enormous because it was the size of an actual wedding dress. After we photographed it and submitted all of her work, she said that she didn’t know what to do with it, so she used it as Halloween decorations.”

After the students finish their projects, some will be placed around display around the school and then will be taken home by the students.

“I think that people should join sculpture if they like what they see,” Roth said. “We do a ton of projects in the class. I like doing it because it encourages other students to join my class, which I really want.”

Of course, there are always a few bumps in the road. Wedlake experienced his own problems in the process of making horns for his mask. He said that there were some issues with the sizing and positioning of them, but all of the students keep a positive mentality when these things arise. For Wedlake, he just had to remember that you really don’t see that kind of uniform in nature.

“I was really negative at first, especially about the mouth,” Wedlake said. “I was trying to come up with a way to make it. At first, I was trying to come up with different variations and models of the snout, and then, one night, I was up and I started sketch it out and I just somehow made it work.”

The outlook is positive and Roth hopes to continue seeing the unique projects in later years.

“I’ve had students in my Art 1 put LED lights inside of their masks around their mouths, their faces, their eyes,” Roth said. “Some of them in the past have even created a foundry in their backyard to melt the metal and make the metal teeth. They’ve just gotten so creative with it and really pushed themselves.”