Framed Silhouette Family Tree
A crisp, graphic take on the family tree, this display has a silhouette of each family member set in an inexpensive store-bought frame. Don't worry if you can't find suitable portraits of everyone -- showing people's bodies in motion, engaged in activity (tennis, anyone?), or standing in a characteristic pose is an unusual and elegant way to depict family members.
- Store-bought frames (Ribba frame, 8 by 10 inches, ikea.com)
- Printouts of photographs
- Patterned artist's paper (Nepal mini dots paper in black, New York Central Art Supply)
- Solid-color artist's paper (Indian Lime paper, Saint Armand paper in Elephant, and cave paper in teal; New York Central Art Supply)
- Graphite transfer paper by Saral, utrecht.com
- Craft knife
- Cutting mat
- Paste (Yes Paste, artsuppliesonline.com)
- Paintbrush (for glue), size 20, by Blick Academic; dickblick.com
- White-ink pen by Pentel, jetpens.com
Use frames to determine size of black-and-white silhouettes. On a photocopier, enlarge or reduce photos to desired size. (Play around with scale and shapes -- including full-body silhouettes, which are great in the mix.) Place patterned paper design side up on cutting mat. Lay transfer paper on top, graphite side down. Place photocopy on top; using a sharp pencil, trace outline. Using craft knife, cut out silhouette on mat.
Brush paste onto back of silhouette; position on solid-color paper. Let dry. Write in name and birth date. Place in frame.
Hang pictures in columns that move upward. Grandparents are lowest; their children above in a horizontal row. Add spouses next, then children. Consider using different-color paper for each generation.