To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, TDS’ employee group dedicated to making the world a greener place hosted its first-annual Recycled Art Show.

Employees from across the country—including those at our sister company U.S Cellular—were invited to submit works of art using materials that were either recycled or upcycled. Participants were encouraged to submit works in a variety of categories including individual, team, parent and child, and projects that showed an old item repurposed into a useful one.

Other that those simple instructions, the sky was the limit!

Participants submitted photos of their projects to an online space where everyone could view them and vote for their favorites. Awards were given for each category—there was even a People’s Choice award given to the projects with the most “likes.” Winners received either a state park annual pass for their state, or a donation made in their name to their choice of environmental charity.

Check out some of the awesome and creative entries into the show!

Leah K.
(above right) Wizard of Oz Mixed Media using: reused canvas, paint from rummage sale, miscellanious old toys that were no longer wanted or broken, a bunch of old buttons, ribbon, old Mardi Gras beads, a dead Christmas tree light, old beads from jewelry. The very tiny yellow and red beads were purchased from an eBay store to complete the more intricate details. There’s quite a bit of symbolism, if you are familiar with the movie.

Sara R.When we finished the wine, I realized the wood box would make the perfect bird house. With the hole size left from the spigot, and even the bottom opens so we could clean it if need be. We also had some old corks that we’d saved from other bottles so my I asked my husband to screw one in to make the perch.

All of the other items used, except the wood sealer to make it last outdoors, were repurposed/found items:

  • leftover eyelet screws from picture-hanging kit
  • extra shoelace from old boots
  • found padlock
  • little shepherd’s hook from neighbor’s ‘junk pile’ of freebies they had out by the sidewalk

Karen H.
I make these drink coasters made with wall tile I get at the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store. I use alcohol inks to create different colors and interesting designs then cover them with a 2-part epoxy. The epoxy gives the surface shine and encapsulates the design so it will never fade, yellow or run. The backside of the coaster is covered with cork so it is functional and looks great on a table.

U.S. Cellular Corporate Facilities Team
“A Dynamic Vision of ‘Green’” is painted card board with texture created with recycled carpet, vinyl wall covering, task light shield, frayed electrical wiring, wire nuts, duct tape, pencil erasers and used paint brushes. The circle symbolizes the cycle of composting.

Samantha W.
I found this old butcher block kitchen cart in a dumpster, the top was warped and the cart had a serious wobble. I tightened some bolts, painted the base (with leftover white paint from another project), and re-made the butcher block using maple scrap wood (from my brother’s remodeling business). There is not a lot of creativity here, but I think it stands to say that there are many things that are thrown out that just need a little love and labor to turn back into useful.

Paul Z.
50 Gallon drum locking ring and metal rods from scrap yard in Cambridge, Wisconsin. The ring’s locking bolt was removed and gap filled with welded rods and resurfaced to match external contours of the rest of the ring. Rod was put through roller to make circular and hand bent.

Robyn B.
This was an old table that had ceramic tile that was cracked and broken. I painted the table and chipped out all the old tile. I used paint sticks and stained with different shades to get the coloring.

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