Creative Phase Activities
Techniques & Tutorials

UP-CYCLED SPICE & PIGMENT  TALISMANS

Objectives

1. Interpreting and personalizing newly gained experience through creation
2. Sense making of  recycling, raising
awareness about creating objects linked with protection of the environment
3. Discovering and recycling skills
4. Creating souvenirs to remind positive
experience of the workshop

Material needed

- UV resin is small portions, one per  participant
- Spices and grains collected from home
- Small plastic bottles to hold the spices
- Wooden sticks to mix species with resin
- Pliers
- Metal wires, jewelry  findings such as hooks for earrings, hoops for
pendants
- Silicone mats
- Hoops of different forms made of metal
- Small UV lamps or a place exposed to sunlight

 

Tips

The facilitator shall try out the technique with the help of the tutorial before setting up the workshop.

Time  frame
Between 120 and 240 minutes

 

Jewellery, instead of being imagined as expensive goods that humanity has fought and even killed for, for centuries, can be also considered as a simple traveling object that you take with and you wear on you during various encounters and adventures. They are both intimate and private objects as you wear them right on your skin or next to your face, both public ones because everyone you meet and talk to can see them. They can be worn as talismans or as messages that you want to transmit about yourself or about you culture. There are surprisingly various meanings and messages that you can transmit through these tiny objects about diversity for instance or environment by creating them through up-cycling techniques.

1. Collect as many kinds of spices as you can coming from as many different regions, countries and cultures as possible. You can also ask participants to bring with them spices they like and that use often. 

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To introduce the Spice talisman making workshop, talk to participant about what a talisman is, about how objects such as jewelry and talismans travel around the world.

You can initiate a conversation about the materials they are made of, compare noble and ordinary ones in order to prepare them for the recycling process. 

During the workshop's first part, you shall show them one of the possible techniques to create recycled talismans with spices and/or pigments.   

The following tutorial will help you to learn the technique. 

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You will need :

Metal findings (steel, brass or copper)

Silicone pads

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Wooden sticks to mix the spice or the pigments with the resin and to apply it.

UV resin that you may order on the internet.

UV resin, unlike resin epoxy can be hardened immediately with the help of a UV lamp and allows you to create art pieces within your workshops that the participants can take with themselves immediately after.

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A small UV lamp or a place where you can expose the talismans to sunshine.

Plastic bottle caps to mix resin and spice in it. 

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Finely powdered colorful spices or pigments 

Plastic gloves for each participant to protect their hands

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1. Place one ore more metal finding on the silicone pad.

2. Put a little bit of pigments or finely powdered spice into a plastic cap.

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3. Mix it with a little quantity of UV resin.

IMPORTANT!

From the very second you pour out UV resin of its black plastic bottle that protects is from UV rays, it will begin to harden it its get any of it. 

Pay attention not to work too close to the window and protect the surface you are working on from direct sunlight. 

4. Fill out gently and carefully your finding placed on the silicone pad. 

Works slowly.

5. When you're done, you can add a very little amount of powder,  pigment or spice to create interesting or uneven textures or shades of colors. 

Here, we just put some additional blue pigment without mixing it.

- Mix it with a little quantity of UV resin.

6. Then place your talisman under the UV for 1 or 2 minutes lamp to harden it.

When you're done, turn in gently and dry the back side as well for 1 or 2 minutes.

If you don't have a UV lamp, put it directly on a sunny surface and keep it there without touching for 10-15  minutes on both sides. 

Be careful while moving with your piece while the resin is still liquid.

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The sprinkling has resulted a nice play of transparency.

7. With your tongs, peel off gently the exceeding resin from the back side.

Don't wait to long, if it is completely hard, it is more difficult to peel it off

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8. With a thin drill bit, make a hole into your talisman close to the edges.

Be careful with the driller , place your talisman on a solid surface and try not to drill through your finger. 

If you don't have a driller, or you don't want to use it for security reasons,  you can also pierce your talisman with a needle.

In this second case, you will need to work quickly and carefully while the  resin is not entirely hard yet.

Do it as if you were  working with the driller, on a hard surface and pierce it delicately, otherwise the resin risks to come off the metal frame.

9. Now you just have to fix your bail to it, tighten it with  you pliers.

You can put it on a metal chain to transform your talisman into a pendant.

In the Marseilles workshop, we mixed the vividly colorful universe of Mexican popular art objects with simple geometric  forms  inspired by symbols used on Islamic talismans.

As you can see, working with spices,  resin and pigments can be a little bit messy.

But the mess can eventually help to put you into the creative flow, you just have to preview to protect  your  tables and some time to clean and put away everything at the end...

Here are some further ideas about that kind of "wasted" you can put into your UV resin to give them texture, colors and patterns:

- waste of pencil sharpening

--brass powder

- curry 

- sand

- tiny stones

- drops of oily painting

You can assemble them with pearls, beads. Just let your imagination flow.

Eventually, if you have enough time, for the workshops, yo can set up two different ones :

1. a  first one to learn the technique and to freely experiment with it

2. a second one to create co-designed pieces around a specific theme.