Digitise, Display and Declutter Children’s ArtworkJune 1, 2020
Once your child starts day care or pre-school, you’re sure to have a never ending stream of artwork brought home. While children’s artwork is a wonderful expression of their creativity, and a great keepsake, it can be hard to know what to do with the mountains of paper and bulky craft projects. Here are our top tips and tricks to digitise, display and declutter your children’s artwork.
While keeping originals of children’s artwork has its benefits, the crux of the matter is that you won’t be able to keep everything. The good thing is that living in the digital age means it’s relatively simple to create a digital copy of paintings, drawings and other art masterpieces.
Have a think about what you want to do with each artwork, and create three piles:
- Digitise and keep
- Digitise and let go
- Let go without digitising
When you have your pile for digitising ready, consider how you want to go about it. Keep in mind that different digitisation methods have their pros and cons (learn more about scanning in this course):
- Scanning – good for flat projects that you want put on a computer straight away. Use 300 dpi at a minimum, 600 dpi is even better.
- Phone Apps – a quick and easy way to scan artwork to your phone, often with different scanning options.
- Photograph – another simple option that usually provides good quality digitisation, and can be used on both flat and 3D objects.
After your children’s artwork has been digitised, make sure to back it up to more than one place – we recommend your phone, a computer and somewhere external like cloud software (download your free Backup Guide here). You may find that digitising artworks as they come into the home works for you, or you can wait until the end of the term or year and do a batch at once.
Displaying and Archiving
If you’ve got your digital copy organised, now’s the time to think about ways to display the artwork. Consider different options for different spaces, and look at what will work for flat versus 3D art – remember, not all artwork has to be stuck to the fridge!
Flat artwork is the easiest to display, with a myriad of options:
- Framing on walls
- Framing on shelves
- Hanging on cork, peg or magnetic boards
- Pegs or art cable systems
- Utilising hangars
Choose a dedicated display zone where artwork can be displayed together. For bulkier 3D pieces, display them like you would a sculpture – you might like to add these to a shelf or other blank space near your flat-artwork display, or choose another area of the house for something different.
If you’ve rotated the artwork but still want to keep old pieces, create a simple and space-saving archive system. Store flat artwork in an art portfolio or scrapbook with the child’s name and year labelled on the front. Use a clear storage container to keep 3D artwork dust free while using minimal space.
More ideas about how to display artwork can be found on this Pinterest board.
Once all relevant pieces of art have been digitised and put either on display or in storage, it’s time to cleanse your home of all unwanted pieces. Don’t feel bad if some pieces simply make it to the recycling – if there are 10 artworks that are identical there is no sense in keeping them all! However, if you do want to do more then simply throwing them away, there are a number of ways to reuse and repurpose pieces of art. A few creative ideas include:
- Gift wrap
- Lolly or gift bags
- Paper boxes
If all else fails, send a piece or two to another loved one like Grandma or Grandpa – just make sure it’s someone who will appreciate it and isn’t already overwhelmed by artwork!
We hope these tips and tricks will help you organise your children’s artwork while keeping lasting memories.