On July 20-22, Robin Whitfield and David Moore led seven teenagers in designing and building the very first ArtPlace Christmas Float! They learned how to safely and properly use power tools, hand tools, and took their ideas from concept to design and completion.

Thank you to the City of Greenwood for sponsoring this program and to the Greenwood-Leflore Chamber of Commerce for providing the trailer!

Here's a daily recap of the workshop from Robin Whitfield:

Day 1 of ArtPlace Mississippi Christmas Float Design / Build Float Workshop for teens

A great crew!! They were hard working and enthusiastic even in the hot humid warehouse at Greenwood Leflore Recycling. Today was all about getting the trailer covered with fresh wood while practicing using power drills and measuring tapes. We also did some conceptual drawings (in the air conditioning!) after watching some video of the Kinetic Sculpture Race, Arcata, CA. So many cool ideas to inspire!

Thanks to the City of Greenwood - Office of the Mayor and the Mississippi Arts Commission for their support of this project.

Day 2 of the ArtPlace Mississippi Design / Build Float Workshop for teens

A hard and tedious day of work in the sweltering heat. With sweat drenched determination they worked for 4 hours measuring, cutting and screwing down 2 x 4's along the rim of our 8 x 24 ft trailer. While drinking lots of cold water we made some concrete design decisions and took a stab at it using a little math and a lot of luck. At the end of the day we have most of the skeleton of the back end. Whew!!

Day 3 of Art Place Mississippi Design / Build Float Workshop for teens.

The last day of round one! Bending and forging metal. Cutting and arranging 2 x 4's and torn and broken wood into "feathers". We were all surprised yesterday at 5 to realize it was time to pack up the tools...the week flew by. I'm so proud of what was accomplished - we achieved vision, a sturdy trailer ready to rock down the road and the back end of our bird beast well underway. Years of salvaged wood and metal took on a new and beautiful life through the hands of very enthusiastic teens. If that's not magic then what is?

Thanks to the all the teens you showed up and worked so hard and to the City of Greenwood - Office of the Mayor and Mississippi Arts Commission for this opportunity!