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This week we report to you from VidCon! We asked some members of the Art Assignment community to share their experience of participating in an art exchange and making a Lost Childhood Object. Here's what they said.

Many thanks to Chelsea, Jacklyn, Lonnie, Hussien, Betty, Peter, and Oliver!

Find a friend and make a Lost Childhood Object: https://youtu.be/QgHsYOybXa0

And don't forget to subscribe for new episodes of The Art Assignment every Thursday!

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Sarah: Hey, we're back at VidCon, the annual online video conference that takes place in Anaheim, California. VidCon is such a great way for me to meet some of the followers and participants in this channel. And this year, we're also doing art making in the PBS Digital Studios Chill Lounge. We have our very own Art Assignment photocopier.

And people are responding to the assignment's copy a copy a copy and fake flyer. For the second year in a row, some members of the Art Assignment community have independently gotten together to do a particular assignment and then get together to exchange what they've done. This year they picked Lenka Clayton's Lost Childhood Object, and I'd like for them to tell you what happened.

Oliver: Hi, my name is Oliver.

Jacklyn: I'm Jacklyn.

Chelsea: I'm Chelsea Dawn.

Peter: Peter.

Lonnie: Lonnie.

Hussein: I'm Hussein.

Betty: Betty.

Oliver: And this--

Jacklyn: This--

Chelsea: This is the--

Hussein: The Art--

Jacklyn: The Art Assignment.

Chelsea: The Lost Childhood Object assignment was to listen to somebody else's story or hear them tell about something they lost from their childhood that was dear to them. And then, as I was listening-- or, in my case, reading about it-- to interpret what they gave me and make something physical to give back to them. And in essence, giving them back their lost childhood object.

Jacklyn: So my lost childhood object was actually a board from my bunk bed when I was little. I've always wanted to be an astronaut. And I've always tried to think about space. And this board at the top of the bunk actually had stars on it. So every morning when I would wake up and every evening when I would fall asleep, this was the first and last thing I would think of was reaching for the stars and doing something with space. And I no longer have that bunk bed.

Lonnie: And so what I did was-- I'm not very good with actual, physical crafting stuff. So I kind of composited in Photoshop wooden slats in front of a mattress texture that were kind of shaded and shadowed, like maybe it's nighttime. And then I ordered glow-in-the-dark stickers of planets and stars and Saturn and stuff.

Jacklyn: It's definitely something that I know I can now hang up on my wall and that this will now inspire me in the future. So it really meant a lot to get that inspiration and that curiosity back again.

Lonnie: So the object that I thought of was this little metal Spider-Man figurine. It was probably like that big. It was smaller than an actual action figure.

Hussein: My problem is that I don't know how to make any anatomically correct people. And they're very difficult for me to make, especially because Spider-Man's very muscular. And making muscles is really, really hard.

Lonnie: It was actually just really perfectly sized and composed, but-- so it was made out of clay. And it looks, admittedly from the guy who created it, more like Spiderman of the Batman and Spiderman YouTube cartoons than an actual Spider-Man. And so it's kind of derpy and adorable, and it's beyond my expectations.

Hussein: It was honestly initially very stressful to make it at the beginning, because I was just very worried about how much this was a thing that somebody remembers deeply from their childhood, and that I thought I was going to ruin it. But after a while, I had understood that the assignment is about how he looks different and how it's not supposed to be exactly the same, and how-- especially, if it's a manufactured object-- how I took what they described and interpreted it.

I used to do a lot of pottery when I was a kid. That was my big thing. I remember for Eid one year my parents got me a pottery wheel. And I loved it. And so one of the first things I tried to do was throw a pot, which was really, really bad. And it was not hollow at all. And it had a very thick base at the bottom.

Betty: It actually took me five tries to make it right, because he said it's an hourglass figure and that it's kind of top heavy. The first three times I made it, it fell over. And then the fourth time, the head just fell off. So the fifth time I finally-- and I realized the fact that the fringed lip-- there's a reason he ended up doing it that way, because it made the top lighter. And so it didn't fall over.

Hussein: And bizarrely enough, when I described this, it actually looks very, very, very similar to what it is that I made.

Betty: My lost childhood object was that I used to own these wooden blocks, or wooden blocks toys. It's kind of like LEGOs, except there's no way to put them together. They were different textures, like bricks and glass and steel and metal. And I used to build forts out of them.

Jacklyn: So the process of making things for Betty, I had to think about how to transport them, because I have to take it here on a plane, give it to her at 8 o'clock in the morning. And then she has to carry it around all day, and then she has to take it back. So I thought, why not origami? And the kind that you can blow up, so you can fold it down really small, put it in your backpack, and then take it home with you later.

Betty: She happened to have guessed that I like origami and I loved origami as a kid. So it's kind of a lucky guess, and also a really creative solution.

Chelsea: My lost childhood object was a very small tape recorder. I am a product of the late '80s, '90s. And so I had a little physical cassette tape recorder that had a microphone on the side and a little handle that was basically a kid's portable karaoke machine that I carried around with me everywhere from about age five to eight. I sang all the time in it. It had a bunch of little buttons on the top. And it was just my very favorite thing.

Peter: So I grabbed a box, and I slapped a bunch of pieces of paper on it. And then I drew-- because she was like, yeah, it had gray speakers. So I drew gray speakers in a pencil. And then she was like, it had red buttons and trim. And The microphone was attached. I had to tape everything with the satin tape, because paper cuts make the worst presents. And I gave it to her. And she made a little scream, and it was great.

Chelsea: I wasn't prepared for how happy it was going to make me to see this little recorder. It wasn't made out of plastic. It wasn't really as I had pictured it being. But it was beautiful.

The object that I was to make as it was described to me was a doll,-- a baby doll-- about 15 inches in length with pale, pink skin, hazel kind of brown, curly, short hair, brown eyes, and a white dress, that was made out of an old t-shirt, with lace details on the collar, and a little bit of marker smudges on the cheeks.

I made it out of modeling clay that's called Model Magic, which is a little bit lighter than regular clay. It's kind of like Play-Doh. And so you can mold it into whatever shape you like. And when it dries, it's just kind of basically like clay.

Oliver: So I had this plastic cement mixer toy that really worked. It had this big yellow drum. And you could stick dirt in the back of it. And there was actually a separate container for water that you could dump into the drum with a little crank that would turn, and it would mix it up. So you had this concrete slash mud mixture. And then a big handle on the side that you could spill out.

I mean, in a lot of ways, we're here at VidCon, we like producing content, because we want to give something away to the world. And you blast it out to the world, and somebody sees it, somebody doesn't see it. You don't know. But here's an opportunity now to take something that you know is precious to them, treat it with respect, create something that is a precious object, and then give it to them, and be able to have the satisfaction of reconnecting them with something that was really special to them. And being able then to see their reaction immediately was wonderful.

Sarah: I know not everybody can't come to VidCon, but hopefully this gave you some sense of the kind of great interactions that can happen here. And if you haven't done your own lost childhood object, watch the video here. And even better, get together a group of friends, and do it as a group activity.

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