Sometimes just painting with regular paint on regular flat paper is boring.
Sometimes you want to create something different, something cool, something EPIC!
That’s what my kids told me the other day. Boring old painting on boring old paper was out, they needed something way more interesting. I looked at the pile of cardboard we were about to recycle and came up with an idea to make stacked cardboard sculptures!
My kids were not convinced of the coolness of this project at first, and I have to admit, neither was I.
Would all the cutting out be worth it?
Would I regret getting out the glue guns?
Would it work out the way I thought it would?
Thankfully this project ended up being way cooler and way more epic than any of us even imagined.
If you need an ‘epicly cool’, creative, activity for your kids, make some stacked cardboard sculptures!
Here’s what you’ll need to make your own stacked cardboard sculptures:
- Lots of cardboard
- Glue – hot glue guns are good, but PVA/craft glue works as well
How to Make a Stacked Cardboard Sculpture
The first thing you need to do is cut lots of random shapes out of the cardboard. We cut circles, squares, and triangles, but you can cut any shapes you like. Random wiggly shapes would be just as interesting as more geometric shapes. It’s good to have shapes in a variety of sizes, ranging from big to tiny. Depending on how thick the cardboard is, cutting the shapes may be a bit tricky and my require some adult assistance for younger kids.
You will also need to cut out some ‘base plates’. Just cut squares or rectangles of cardboard that are a little bigger than your biggest shapes to become the base of your sculpture.
Onces you have a whole lot of shapes you are ready to build your cardboard sculptures.
We used low temp hot glue gun (affiliate link) to stick our sculptures together.
Low temp glue guns are great for this project as the glue dries almost instantly. They are not as hot as the old type of glue guns, but younger kids will still need adult supervision, and you’ll need to set some rules for using the glue guns. We make a simple stand for the glue gun out of folded cardboard and make the rule that the glue gun must be returned to the stand after each use. We also have a damp cloth nearby so we can quickly and easy wipe off any hot glue before it burns.
If a hot glue gun isn’t your thing, you can also use PVA or craft glue, but you may need to allow extra drying time between layers, especially when you start getting really tall stacks.
Building your cardboard sculptures is easy, just choose some shapes and start stacking!
We arranged our shapes in a stack first, without gluing, so we could make sure it looked the way we wanted it to look, then we started gluing.
You only need a small amount of glue to attach each level of your sculpture. Don’t go crazy with the glue!
Keep adding layers and building your stack as high as you can, to make cool sculptures!
Once the glue has dried (which is pretty much instantly if you use a glue gun) you can add some colour!
We decided we’d like to try pouring and dripping paint into your sculptures. So we used regular liquitemp kid’s paints, with lots of water added to make them very runny. We dribbled spoonfuls of paint over our cardboard stacks, or just poured the paint right over them.
We also used some of the cool Ikea paints to squeeze and drip onto the sculptures.
Pouring the paint over the sculptures created some very cool results, and was loads of fun!
Building these stacked cardboard sculptures was quick, fun and easy. It was well worth cutting out all those shapes, and pouring and dripping paint over them was ‘epicly cool fun! Making these cool sculptures was not even a little bit boring!