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Eco Art Camera: A Quick How To

We call it the Eco Art Camera because it is part art project, part craft project, made of 100% recyclables and all around awesome. Seriously, my guys played with these things for months before they eventually pulled the buttons and lenses off, then we added them back to the recycle bin and who knows what’s become of them now.

IMG_2589 Pretty cool right? I was kind of impressed with them to, especially considering what we used to make them:
– an empty box of macaroni and cheese
– the lid from a large jar of spaghetti sauce
– half of a toilet paper roll
– a water bottle lid
– scrap pieces of aluminum foil, newspaper and string

As you’re about to see, tape and tempura paint were also used liberally …


We started by wrapping our box in newspaper and then using our favorite painting technique (not finger painting, but whole hand painting – the messier the better) to cover the newspaper and give the camera it’s color. You could skip this step altogether if you’re pressed for time, but it was my kids favorite part and what gave this project so much personality.

Wait for the paper to dry, we set them outside and went to the park for awhile.

When you get back wrap half of a toilet paper roll and a small piece of cardboard in aluminum foil – a piece of a cereal box or the inside flap of the macaroni box will work just fine. Tape the toilet paper roll to the flat piece of cardboard and then attach the new shape to the front of your camera to make the lens.

Separate the outer plastic ring from your spaghetti sauce lid and hot glue it to the top right of your box to create a viewfinder, anything could be used here really – feel free to get creative with it.

Glue the water bottle lid to the top of the box to act as your shutter.

Carefully glue your neck strap on to the sides, this was the only piece of this project I had to keep fixing for my guys. I never did come up with a really secure way to make it stay … maybe you will! And then you’ll be so kind to tell me about it :) Thanks.

That’s it, that’s all there is to it. Hand the camera over to your budding photographer and let them get busy snapping. There’s so much fun to be had.
snap These were a prominent part of our playroom for a very long time, until a toddler got a hold of them. If treated properly, they will last a long time. And if not, they’re simple to make so you can always whip up a new one using items from your recycle bin!

Happy Earth Day weekend folks, tell me have you ever made something using items from your recycle bin? If you have a post or a photo leave it in the comments section, I’d love to see it!

Let me know if you have any questions about any of the steps and do me a favor and join me on Facebook, I’d love to chat with you there.

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