Sometimes, medium is everything

I sucked at arts and crafts. So when my primary school arts teacher told the class to come up with our own art projects to submit, I wasn’t too happy.

Luckily, I had a children’s encyclopedia (yes, it was still a thing back then…) and I flipped through the arts and crafts book… And found something interesting.

It was a woven seat. Basically you take strips of newspaper (the printed kind. Yes, it was still a thing back then…) and weave them together. I believe there were 2 sets of the weaves, and then you weave them together at the edges. Each strip was maybe 4 layers of newspaper, so the whole thing turned out to be quite bulky. And soft due to the material used.

My arts teacher was positively ecstatic, probably because my newspaper woven seat was one of the few original projects in the class. However, the “dirtiness” of the woven seat bothered her. You know newspapers are (were?) printed with ink, and newspaper ink can, you know, smudge your fingers.

So she asked me to make another one, but use construction paper instead.

That was hard. Construction paper is rougher and less pliable than newspaper, so it’s harder to weave. In the end, the one made with construction paper didn’t have the seat-feel to it.

A simple solution to the newspaper woven seat being “dirty” would be to wrap it in clear plastic. This way, the texture is retained, the softness retained, the “artistic” look retained, yet it remains “clean”.

Construction paper is just not very suitable for this particular art project. Sometimes, medium is everything.


My Open XML spreadsheet class is starting next Monday, 2 July. I’ve written a programming guide on the topic, but this is the first time I’m writing a study course curriculum on it. I’m excited!