Saturday, July 28, 2007

Goldilocks and Baby Bear

I have finished my latest doll and bear set!I love them!Of course, I always find things in my work which I can improve upon for next time, but still, I am very pleased with the way this one turned out.

Here are a few more in progress photos before I show the ones of the finished piece.

I made an under-dress with some eyelet fabric and I altered a pair of doll tights it fit her. They are ribbed so the seams in the back really do not show,and I'm glad of that. I cut the bottoms off and tucked them into the tops of her shoes with a thin bead of glue. I learned this little trick from Jack Johnston. In this photo her mohair wig is only resting on her head. It is much easier to keep the hairstyle nice if you attach the hair after the cloths are on.

Goldie has her red velveteen jumper on and she's wondering if she can please have some hair now. Baby bear looks lovingly on--he thinks she's beautiful the way she is! The clothing is sewn on because this is an art doll and she's not mean't to be dressed and undressed.

Here is the finished set. I'm calling it "Friends Forever (Goldilocks and Baby Bear)"

This one is my favorite shot.

Goldie close up.

Baby Bear's head shot.

That's all for now. I only have four more work days until The Sauder Village Doll and Teddy Bear show so I'd better get off of the computer and get busy sewing more bears~!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Progress Report

I have worked a bit more on my doll and wanted to add the new photos. I don't have a close up of the painted face because my camera has flipped out on me. I have to get out my manual and check the settings...

Sculpting hands is very challenging for me and I spent most of yesterday afternoon sculpting one hand only to burn it up in the oven! I forgot to reset the temperature after supper!!!(EEEEK! Goth Baby Doll, anyone?)

Here is Goldilocks with her new hands and a painted face.

Next, I will wrap the arm wires in batting and make cotton fabric tubes to cover them. Her shoulder plate will be attached after the arms are on. The wig will be attached after the clothing is done. Stay tuned...

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Changing Direction

In Susanna Oroyanne's book Designing the Doll, she describes dollmaking as a series of problem solving activities. When the artist comes up with the idea, he or she then has to ask questions about how to achieve each element of the design, and how to bring those elements together as a whole. I love making a plan and having it come to fruition just the way I imagined it. When I made the Christopher Robin and Pooh piece I had a very clear picture of what I wanted to do (probably because the image is straight from the illustrations of E.H. Shepard). I knew just how I wanted them to appear--like they were stepping right out of the book.
I was thrilled when this piece turned out as I had imagined. (Visit my website for a picture.)

While it is a delight to have something turn just as you plan, it is also a thrill to follow the path that a work will lead you on, if you let go and let it. The piece I am working on is taking me down such a path. I love Halloween and I had a clear picture in my mind of a child witch doll. She is a cute child doll with a slightly somber look, curly red hair, witchy clothing, and she is seated with legs crossed and dangling. She is holding a primative looking stuffed black cat. And she will have to be born later because as soon as I sculpted the head, I realized I was not making her! I sculpted a child with a little smile. Her mouth is slightly open as if she has something to say. (I wonder what it is?)

I tried to think of a new plan, but only got as far as "just a little girl with a doll or something". I went ahead and sculpted her legs,and ordered two mohair wigs from because I couldn't decide between the red hair with braids or the long wavy blond. This picture shows the leg armature I made from wire,foil and white floral tape.

Here are the sculpted painted legs on the cloth body. I sculpted the shoes, too.

I also continued to work on my Teddy Bears for an upcoming show. I made a bear with a needle felted face and paws. I have felted bears, felted a doll face, and made bears out of mohair of course, but I had never done a felted face bear and I wanted to try. I felted his little pawpads too. I was playing with different proportions than my typical work so I loved him right away because he was so different with his felted face and tiny hands and feet! I often carry a new bear around the house with me when I fall for one like that,and this little guy followed me.(He's looking on even now as I type this!)

Well, yesterday the wigs came and as I worked on the doll's body and tried on the wigs (or rather the doll did), I saw the little bear watching. Then I had a thought!!! I know who this doll is! I'm making Goldilocks and Baby Bear!! Yes,I know, it's a common theme, but my Goldilocks and Baby Bear will be friends!! Arent they perfect for each other?

I had this little bench in my studio. I think I will make her hold his paw...

I can't wait to see where the rest of this goes!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

UFOs and WIPs

It seems like since the rise of the internet more and more people write in initials. We see things like TTFN (ta-ta for now),FYI (for your information), LOL (laugh out loud), BTW (by the way), and even WWJD (what would Jesus do?) more and more each day. It took me a while to get used to this, and I still sometimes have to ask my email correspondants things like, "What the heck is ROFLMAO?!" (BTW--it stands for "rolling-on-the-floor-laughing-my-a**-off)

Anyway, in my doll artist guild, I discovered another that I liked really well. I like it so much because it's clever and it refers to something I have a lot of--- UFOs! It stands for unfinished objects! I always have several projects going at once so there are always UFOs invading my house. Sometimes these UFOs get put into boxes because I have decided to move on to something else, but often I move from one to the other for several weeks until they are finished. That's always really cool because when they all are finished around the same time, I feel like I have done a lot really fast even though that's not what actually happened. I think I'm coming up on one of these times soon here--I hope so anyway!

I was recently reading another blog and I came across a term I like even better, WIP, which stands for work in progress. I have decided that this is a better term. "Unfinished" has a negative connotation because it sort of implies a perpetual state of incompleteness, as if it will never be finished. I suppose I have some pieces like that, but more often than not things do get finished at some point! Work in progress is much more postive! I do have several UFOs, sitting around in boxes, but here are a few WIPs I've been working on lately:

The Bearhouse

Here is a dollhouse, or rather a bearhouse my son and I have been working on:

Can you see the little bears in the windows? I made these for Alex and Brendan a few years ago.

It's "under roof" as the builders in my neighborhood would say. The bears have already moved in. We just have to finish shingling and make some furniture.

Little Floppies

I've made more of my Little Floppy Bears for the Sauder Village Doll and Teddy Bear Show (See the Latest News section of my website for more information.)

No longer UFO's--the finished Floppies!

Clown Bear

Here is a clown bear I am working on for a challenge on Teddy Talk. You can see he is nearly complete.

Doll Sculpt

And finally, here is a doll I just started sculpting in polymer clay today. Her head is finished and baked and I am working on the breastplate.

Well, that's about it... I'll post as I finish things.