CM Archive
CM Archive Book Review line

Rudi Haas and Hans Blohm.
Toronto, ON: Oxford University Press, 1986.
#pp., paper, $15.95.
ISBN 0-19-540513-7. CIP.

Subject Headings:
Egg carton craft-Juvenile literature.
Animals-Models-Juvenile literature.

Grades 1 and up / Ages 6 and up

Reviewed by Dale Simmons.

Volume 14 Number 4
1986 July

Frogs, pigs, turtles, elephants, leopards, mice, chameleons, zebras, and whales; they are all here, and yours for the making. Rudi Haas, movie animator and graphic designer has teamed up with master photographer, Hans Blohm, to produce a book demonstrating how to create these very creatures, along with many others.

These amazing animals are brought to life from common Styrofoam egg-cartons, making use of the cartons' bumps and odd shapes. All you need are scissors, eggcartons, and lots of patience. Texture can be given to the forms by wrinkling, stamping, or engraving. Colour can be added using natural or artificial dyes. The results, as shown in the book's photographs are spectacular and surprisingly life-like.

David Suzuki, in his introduction, warns, "you'll feel clumsy at first but you'll get better and faster with practice." I found this good advice. In the course of trying my hand at this novel craft, I came to a few realizations. Most importantly, not all egg-cartons are created equal. My carton did not have all the same bumps as the ones pictured in the book. Consequently, I was able to make only a few of the animals. Also, the Styrofoam used in egg-cartons can vary. Avoid the brittle variety, as it leads only to frustration. The soft flexible type is what is needed for a successful creation. You will have to shop around till you find what you want.

The text that accompanies the photographs gives information, such as the animals' natural habitat, eating habits and behaviour. There are few written instructions. Instead, you copy what is shown in the illustrations. Children will need help from an adult, especially at first. After they have worked with the material, they will no doubt use their imaginations to create their own animals as Haas encourages them to do. Recommended.

Dale Simmons, Ottauwa, ON.
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