Scrap Paper Fish

Maybe it is because I am an art teacher, or maybe it is by chance, either way, when I see beautifully painted bits of paper in the trash I must heroically come to their rescue. At first it was the big pieces, then the medium ones and slowly my obsession grew to collecting even the smallest scraps. As the pile of brightly colored shapes started to overtake desk, I realized they had so much potential, and were deserving of a second chance at becoming a masterpiece.  As I began to experiment and plan for a future project, I realized that what I really wanted was for my students to see the potential and possibilities that I saw when I looked at their beautiful scraps. And so it began….

Each student created an 12″x 18″ piece of textured painted paper. Students were free to experiment with different tools, different colors and even different brushes. Once the paper was dry, the project details were revealed….and things got a little “fishy.”


Each student cut out a fish body (a football/lemon shape) then, their scraps were put in a plastic tub in the center of the room. To create the detailed features of their fish they were only allowed to use scraps from their peers. Suddenly, those discarded bit of paper became valuable and students were eager to use them in new ways!






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