Making Paper Masks for Carnival and Mardi Gras

By Sheila Ceccarelli

Making a Carnival Mask with the help of an AccessArt Template

One of my most vivid memories from being a teenager myself was going to the Venice Carnival with my dad. The theatre of it was intense and seeing a whole city come alive in costume mesmerising. But what stuck with me more than anything was seeing a city’s craft come to life; on every street corner stalls were selling artisan made carnival masks.

Carnival mask - SC


Last year, I asked my dad if he’d draw me a template for an Animal Parade workshop I was doing for my Brilliant Makers Club (then called Milton Road Making Club). I trialled the template first with teenagers at my Experimental Drawing Class to see if it worked and if they would be able to bring the flat template to life by cutting and stapling and turn it into a 3D mask.

Here, a year later, some images from our one hour mask making session (I apologise that some are slightly out of focus, but felt they showed step by step what to do, and might be valuable in that way, but also demonstrated the mastery of the teenagers and what they could produce in such a short space of time).

My dad, a very gifted draftsman man created the template on on old scrap.

Please do use and share the Mask Template.

There is also a Nose Template that you can download, but the noses on the masks below were the invention of the students themselves after having mastered folding and stapling paper.

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