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How to Create Your Own Upcycled Art Project

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Does the art in your living room look like it came straight from a store showroom? Spice things up in your space by creating or buying original pieces of art made from uncommon materials. Upcycling refers to reusing an object in a way that creates more value the second time around. If you create your own upcycled art and decor in your own home, you’ll be able to enjoy it twice as much!

Transform Familiar Materials

Look at that bubble wrap in your closet, or those leftover party streamers used at your daughter’s birthday party. Or even that old stack of newspapers and magazines. This is an upcycled art decor treasure trove! All these materials can be transformed into original and unique pieces of artwork. Try wrapping a canvas in bubble wrap, using hot glue as an adhesive, or wrapping a canvas in newspapers or collage materials using matte medium as an adhesive instead of buying regular printed canvas art.

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Virginia Warwick, 2020. “Landscape” 24”x36”x3”.

Need Some Inspiration?

One local Frederick, Maryland artist, Virginia Warwick, is very familiar with transforming common materials into unique pieces of art. For her work “Landscape” (pictured above) she started with a canvas from a supply store, then painted it with different colors using acrylic paint. Next, she cut plastic drop cloths into about two inch strips. She marked the drop cloths with a sharpie marker and attached zip ties to the perimeters to further transform the material, and also added party streamers. Finally, to give the illusion of a foreground in the piece she attached these transformed drop cloths onto the canvas with the help of chicken wire and a staple gun. Virginia started with a canvas, paint, drop cloths, zip ties and chicken wire and then the upcycled art piece came together to form something completely different and original?

Diversity Instead of Uniformity

Instead of having the same boring prints, or “manufactured” art, try something original! It can really add some diversity and a different bohemian look to your living space. Then try framing your new art or hanging it in a not- so-typical fashion. For instance, try hanging the art salon style, or pairing a collage with a painting, or a painting with a mixed media piece. It will not only add style, but a uniqueness that can’t be compared to another dwelling place. When you create your own upcycled art in your home, you’ll want to show it off in a special way!

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