I’m really excited to share this post with you! A little while ago, a long time customer and forum friend Sherri got in touch to let me know how she had created a huge wall display in her classroom using my doodles. I was really interested to learn how she had used some software to enlarge the images without losing quality (my doodles are generously sized for use on a 12×12 scrapbook page, or in a letter sized document, but not generally large enough for a huge wall display!) so she kindly explained her process to me, so I can share it with you! Sherri’s display looks fabulous and has become a bit of a talking point in the computer lab! Here’s Sherri to explain exactly how she put it all together:
Our school-wide theme this year is ‘Dive into Learning’. We were given the theme last May so that we could start thinking about how we would incorporate it into the classrooms. Being my first year in the computer lab, I was pretty excited to make the room my own with some decorative touches. I did a quick search for ocean/sea/underwater classroom decorations but nothing struck me. I decided that it was just as well because I would rather get creative and come up with something different. My first thought went to using digital scrapping supplies to create the themed room decor. I did a few searches but nothing seemed right. I had used Kate’s doodles last year to decorate the room that I worked in so I decided to check out The LilyPad to see if Kate had any doodles that would work with our theme. I quickly found the ‘Under the Sea‘ pack and decided instantly that I had to use it.
I sat for a few weeks with the download file on my desktop, not sure what to do with it. I could not decide exactly what I wanted to do with the images, only that I wanted to use them. In the past when I used Kate’s doodles, I traced them onto transparencies and used an overhead projector to enlarge the designs to fill my wall and then colored them in. They were cute, but I don’t have the coloring and shading skills that Kate does and they didn’t appeal to me as much as the original images. I thought about how great it would be if I could use the images just as they were. I wanted them BIG though. I thought about ordering something poster sized but realized that it could get expensive fast if I went that route. I kept thinking. Meanwhile, I posted on Kate’s facebook page for Kate Hadfield Designs and mentioned how much I would LOVE a diver to go with our dive into learning theme. A little while later, Kate created a new doodle pack including the divers I needed and I had all the images I wanted for my display.
Towards the end of the summer it was time to get serious and decide what I was going to do in that room. I was searching random blogs and came across one that talked about PosteRazor and then I knew exactly what I was going to do! PosteRazor is a (free!) program that allows you to blow an image up as large as you like. You input the image into the program, let the program know what dimensions you would like your image (or how many sheets of paper you would like to use) and it converts the image to a pdf file for you to print. Each page has a portion of the larger image on it and after you print them you cut out the parts and piece the image together. The pages print so that there are overlapping sections making it really easy to line everything up. Once I realized that this was a possibility, I knew what I would do!
I set out to create an extra large scrapbook page. I found some fadeless background paper through a school supply store that fit with our theme. This became my canvas. I then printed out each of the pieces that I wanted to use. Some of them I laminated first and then pieced them together with double sided tape along the overlapping edges. Smaller pieces I was able to cut out, piece together and then laminate. These are a little sturdier but the larger ones would not fit in the machine as a single piece. Once I had everything together I just started layering them onto the paper background. I used double sided tape to stick on each piece. The tape holds well but isn’t re-positional so I had to be careful where I was placing things. I love the end result. I have gotten lots of positive comments from the students and teachers alike who come into the computer lab. The seams where each character is pieced together is barely noticeable unless you look closely.
Now I can just imagine the possibilities using Kate’s artwork and PosteRazor to create large display scenes for holidays and events!
I hope that Sherri’s display has inspired you as much as it has me, I keep thinking of ways to use giant sized doodles everywhere now! Have you used my illustrations in your classroom? If so, I would LOVE to see how you used them!
I’m a teacher and my ideas are all over right now! Too bad I don’t have my own classroom though.
wow such an amazing job, and your classroom is AMAZING!!! thank you for sharing this is completely mind blowing! Kate’s doodles are just out of this world gorgeous!!