Lyda here. I’m a member of a cultural phemonmenon and I didn’t even know it.
Yep. I’m a dumpster diver. I actually don’t jump right into dumpsters. Because – ew! I do pick up useful items on the street and from other places, including dumpsters. Some are used for my various art projects. Some are used in my home or garden.
Ya’ll know you can get lots of stuff really cheap at Goodwill and places like that. Garage sales are another good chance to find treasures.
But off the street is free.
Yes, I pick stuff up off the street. The Resident Sith Master is mortified by this, even though he loves some of the things I have recovered. I’ve picked up baskets, plant pots, construction leftovers, and other useful stuff. I have furniture – 2 patio chairs, an ottoman, and two office chairs – I picked up off the street. I paint or recover or fix stuff as needed.
All I had to do was drive around my neighborhood. Where I live, the custom is to put unwanted stuff on the curb and hope someone carries it off.
I love trolling the streets apres-garage sales.
What? It says “skinflint” in the tags, doesn’t it?
I collect natural objects – branches, pine cones, and such – as well as manmade things. I make art projects out of found objects. I used a found door panel as a frame for one of my photography collages. I made a mixed media piece with trash found in a university parking garage over the course of a month – I was working there at the time. I was amazed at the trashy ways of the students. I chose not to pick up the used condom. Ya’ll will agree, I made the right decision there.
When I visited Gorgeous and Available Engineer brother a few years ago, we helped one of his friends gather scattered debris in his yard before a party (the house is in the country, and they are restoring it as they can). I wanted to bring many things home with me, but I thought it might be hard to get them through the airport detectors. There were pieces of old machinery and farm implements that had rusted and decayed into beautiful shapes. There was an old mattress that was nothing but the rusted coiled springs, which would have made an awesome trellis in a garden. GAAE brother said I should learn welding so I can make sculptures out of this kind of found metal. Sounds awesome to me.