how to make crayon cubes

Artists are just children who refuse to put down their crayons.
— Al Hirschfeld
2 crayon cubes supplies alma stoller.jpg

I love to recycle and repurpose. It is a big part of what I do as an artist. Today I am going to rev up these old crayons. Give them a new life and make up my own crayon color names. This is a super simple way of coming up with a collection of crayon colors of your own random design.

I love crayons. Crayons scream creative possibilities and fearless play. Opening up a new box takes me back to kindergarten. I love the smell and the feel, and the wild and vivid colors, specially when each crayon has such an interesting and delicious name like cornflower, timberwolf and wisteria.

To start, gather up your supplies.

The best and easiest way to remove the paper label off of crayons is to put all of the crayons in a large bowl of lukewarm water. In just a few minutes, the paper will slide right off.

Dry the crayons and break it into small pieces.

7 cut crayons alma stoller.jpg

Place the crayon bits in your silicone ice cube tray. Make sure that you have a variety of colors in each cube. Include white, cream, yellow and light pinks, as well as deeper tones in blue, green, purple and red.

Turn the oven on to 325° degrees. (162.778°Celsius) Put the ice cube tray on a cookie sheet. Place the tray in the oven for about 15 minutes. 

Add more crayon pieces and place it back into the oven for another 10 minutes or until it has completely melted. 

You want the crayons to gradually cool down, so turn the oven off but leave it inside for a few minutes.

Take it out of the oven. Let it rest.

It should look something like this.

Wait until the crayons have harden. Then wiggle the tray a bit until the crayon cubes come out.

This is what it looks like when they're completely done.

Now go ahead and give your 15 crayons an interesting name.

For me, each crayon cube reminded me of completely random things. --- a place, a song, a character, an image, a feeling.  The naming of each crayon cube can be an exercise in wordsmithery. So give it a try.

The color names of my 15 crayon cubes are:

1. not exactly gray matter

2. alizarin crimson

3. deep below pluto's surface

4. Cedric Diggory

5. november graveyard

6. the changing leaves in New England

7. drops of jupiter and juniper 

8. my name is slim shady pop rocks

9. mauve-velous

 10. Amber Brown is a crayon

11. tangerine dream

12. purple rain-drops keep falling on my head

13. of mist and moss 

14. calamus draco (Dragon's Blood) 

15. wint-o-green

It's now your turn. Make your own crayon cubes and give each color an awesome, figurative, vivid and authentically YOU kind of name. 

doodle on and enjoy!

We could learn a lot from crayons; some are sharp, some are pretty, some are dull, while others bright, some have weird names, but they all have learned to live together in the same box.
— Robert Fulghum