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Sunday, May 31, 2009


I made bases. At least I hope I did. I used an air dry clay to begin the bases for my elves. I have never used it before and it was fun to play with. It is heavier by far than paperclay. Of course I will need to use a wooden support base underneath because I fear that the air dry clay will break easily the way I used it. But it will suit my purpose for now. I keep looking at the figures in the books and so many don't need bases. I want to know how to pull that off. So I'll keep looking.

There are a lot of pics in the books I've seen that use everyday objects as bases for the dolls. Some of these are just ingenius. I am loving that idea.


OK. I didn't like the way I did on a doll and he is already baked. So what to you do? I took a pair of pliars and pulled off the clay I didn't like. Now what? I'm not sure.

I have been looking at some fabulous Art Doll Magazines. I am amazed at how many different ways there are to make a doll. These are older magazines that were offered by the company for a greatly reduced price(1.99) and I couldn't help myself. I want to do dolls like all of the ones I see. Temptation should not get me though. I know I will only be happy when I find my sculpting niche. And the more ways I go about finding it, the more confused I'll become.

We are having a nice relaxing Sunday. The weather is beautiful and I'm torn between wanting to be in the studio or outside. East Tennessee is one of the most beautiful places in the world. I am torn because I can work in the studio, or go outside and overwork my allergy medicine. The studio wins. I'm getting low on allergy medicine.

I wish I could have dolls from all of the artists I have seen. The studio could be as beautiful as it is outside and all sorts of super people would be in there to talk to. I'm prone to talk to the computer so why not dolls. I have chided Winifred several times for the flat back of her head. She laid down too much as a child. The wonderful Mortimer has been yelled at for having no ears. And Edward Elf has caught bad words for not having better taste in clothes. Now Alarie Fee's shoulders were too big. I will be 64 in July. I hope I can stop making those mistakes by then. And find a whole new set.

Thanks for listening. Have a good and Blessed day.


Saturday, May 30, 2009

Color again

Color sometimes seems to belong to children. We dress our little children in wonderful color, like Anabelle, my adorable granddaughter. The hat is so cute but we wouldn't think of something like that on our adult selves. So why not? Color makes me feel lots better and yet I wear black. Of course I keep hearing that if you are heavy, wear dark colors. Well I do. Why? Everyone knows I am heavy anyway. I neeeeed more color. The whole world turned colors this Spring and going outside was a pleasure. Now the world is a million shades of green, all of which are soothing. There are flowers in flowerbeds everywhere. Multicolored birds fly about. I wear black. It is summer here. Time for the blue of the ocean and sky, the yellows of the butterflies, the orange of the sunset, and the purples too. I am caught up in making dolls yet I see myself making an elf with brown and greenish tan. I need color, lots of it. My elves may wear woodsy colors but someone in my brood of works in progress will be colorful. I promise.

Thanks for listening and have a good and blessed day.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Work to do.

I've been sitting at my computer off and on for a while with this pic of my granddaughter in front of me. She seems to be looking off into the distance, perhaps into the future. At least she seems to be. I love this picture because it has so much in the way of possibilities.

That is somewhat how i feel with a blank canvas, or with an armature. So many possibilities. I regret that my vision leads me to see things just as they are and not as they could be. I would love to inject more whimsey into the figures I make. I am trying. I have one I am working on that I just decided to make and let the clay talk. He is truly a strange looking fellow. I'm in the midst of digging around for what Nikki calls bits and bobs of things to use putting him together. I've named him Mayor Murphy. He is imposing in his girth. But odd. Anyway, the mayor is not the one who had a tangle with Mortimer North. (All will be explained as time goes by.)

I've visited many sites and seen a lot of beautiful dolls. One thing that strikes me is that none of the terrific ones are easy to do. They take a lot of care and planning. Another learning process for me. The face is just a small part of the whole doll and though it is important, The doll needs PRESENCE to be really noticeable. So just making a doll is one thing. Making a doll important is quite another. That is what I am studying right now-the difference between just a doll and an important doll. I suppose I fall in love with dolls who have movement or who seem to be telling a story. At first I thought it was enough to give them a name. And it may be enough for some folks. But I needed more to get excited about a figure. It is the story behind the figure that rings my chimes and makes me want to add to and finish the folks. So I go from the pedestrian doll making mode to creating a persona mode and the whole thing becomes exciting.

I am surprised at how very much there is to learn yet in art. And this one is the kicker. I painted. The results were fairly ordinary pictures. What is the difference between the fairly ordinary and the extraordinary? For me it is that the art work takes me further than the surface of the piece. So I am going to start digging below the surface and also below my surface and see what is there.

Thanks for listening to my ramblings. Good and Blessed day to you.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Ah, today.

I painted yesterday. When I look at some of the works that others do I find myself wanting to paint away mistakes. But anyway I painted. Base coated the figures I already put into the oven. I have tried to use pastels on unbaked figures but I think it takes a while to learn. So more practice ahead. Today I work on painting again. I have finally found that it is really fun to paint the figures but layering makes it even better. I repainted Winifred some and she looks a lot better now. And my weird bird figure needs a name so I'll know how to paint him. Had a lot of fun with Mortimer North the dead dandy. I am in love with him. But I can't tell him. I realize the poor guy has no ears. Another thing to figure out today.

It is juicy outside. That is what one newscaster in our area calls the high humidity we have right now. Since I hate to sweat, I'm staying in. What a good excuse to go to the studio and work. Also the wonderful new CD's I got, Loreena McKennitt, Nox Arcana, Enigma, etc. are helping to make the room feel welcoming. It's amazing what a little music can do.

Summer is upon us and I am going to head for the woods as soon as possible. I want to look for mosses, sticks and wood pieces to use in sculpting. I have heard that it is best to dry everything and bake wood to get all of the bugs out. So that is on the list of things to do too. Nikki is making a witch house. I want a house so that is on the agenda and I would like to have some natural things to include in it. I think the house will come first and then the figures to go into it. I get excited every time I think about it. A whole other world for me to enter when this one isn't so good.

As always I appreciate the people who blog here and love and blessings to you all.


Bienvenidos Adrianne

Big welcome to Adrianne Moro. My newest follower writes in Tita Arts and Crafts and Adrianne Moro Artes. She speaks Spanish. I tried. Welcome Adrianne. Bienvenidos.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Old stuff

These are three of the works I did back when. Basically, I worked in watercolor first and graduated to acrylic. I did some oils, too slow. I did some minor sculpting. I found that to do a painting, I had to want to be there. Obviously trees and water ring my chimes.

Monday, May 25, 2009

New day to work.

It's Monday. This is supposed to be the first day of the workweek. But how does one who creates art know when the work week begins and ends? I am lucky enough not to have a job outside the home so I don't care. I am beginning the new week welcoming Light and Shadow Studio and Paula Nerhus. I just love meeting new people. Both of these artists are wonderful. Thanks for joining.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

This blog

This blog started to be about my progress in life since losing a job in Sept of last year. Then I rediscovered art. And dolls. And artists. And now it is a journey into the art world. I feel like I hit the jackpot this week. I can welcome Indigo Moth, Dessa Dolls, PJ's Talking, and The Ice Queen. It is a wonderful feeling to have people with me on the journey. Thanks.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Edward is a symptom

I have posted pics of Edward Elf on this blog. Edward is my homage to the need for more fantasy and more joy in my life. I used to have it. Years ago. I was painting, sculpting, making jewelry, and was firmly in touch with my spiritual side. I had several wonderful albums of music I listened to and enjoyed the feeling of floating away when I heard them. The creative side of me cranked up and I felt I could do anything. I had not been crafting and painting to make money but to make me happy. I did try to sell a few things but only half-heartedly. And guess what. You don't get anywhere using half a heart.

The money crunch hit me about 9 years ago and I had to go to work outside the home. When I got home I had no time to listen to my music and to get into the mood to create because there were things to do and I was completely worn out. Penny pinching was not one of my favorite things to do. I just wanted to come home, sit down, and zone out. I hated working. Actually I hated the job I had for the last 6 years of working. I don't handle boredom well and the job was so dumb a monkey could do it. I was terminated for sleeping on the job. But I just couldn't stay awake in a 78 degree office where I worked on the computer all day and only had a half day's work to do. Anyway, the termination was the best thing that could have happened except for the drop in income. Oh well, you win some, you lose some.

In December I had already cleaned out the rooms that had been covered with piles of stuff(crap), and I was wanting to do something. I picked up the paintbrushes that were 12 years old and the paints which had hardened some. I noticed that my vision had changed. What I saw back then is not what I am seeing now. And then I discovered blogging is much more than writing a few words. I am not always wordy and some of the comments I leave are short. So the first attempts at blogging were not so great. However, the world opened up. I began to go to blogs from all over the world, and soon discovered that we all have things in common. Check out family websites. All the same no matter what the language.

With a great big, but quiet, bang I discovered the artists on the blogs. I have learned how to find other artists and how to access other blogs and have discovered some of the nicest(Nikki) people in the world. I have developed a great affection for many people I haven't seen and a great sense of gratitude for all of the bloggers. I have learned more about myself in the process. I really am growing. I ordered some CD's(Amazon has used ones) and gotten a few more supplies and I feel good for the first time in 10 years. I can walk outside and be grateful for the beauty of my area. I can go to my studio and feel grateful that I saved so much of the stuff I had back then. I think all things are happening as they should and much of the credit goes to the artists on the blogspot. Thank you!!!!!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Sweet Edward-with clothes

I have several things still to do with Edward. But at least he is dressed for them.

Monday, May 18, 2009

just in case

Just in case I am not getting anywhere fast, I would like to post a bit of the work I am doing. Boy is it hard getting sculpting, painting, and even baking right the first time I try. I'm making some progress but I have discovered that I have to do things over fairly often. I put the hand on, it isn't right, I pull the hand off, I do it over, I put the hand on, etc. And I am taking forever to get a face done and it isn't what I want so my skill at profanity is increasing. The only time my speech was worse was when I was trying to learn how to use the computer. It's a good thing no one was here to watch, especially my children.

I baked Edward Elf and did some painting on him and I have a lot more to do. He looks better than I expected. The head I am working on is just practice. Boy do I need a lot of practice. But I have loved the practice. That is good. I would like to use the head for some doll sometime. I do think he is sort of cute. I ordered some wool hair and I imagine it will come in a week or two. Next experiment. Finishing the painting of the eyes.

I included a couple of pics of my workspace. It isn't particularly well organized but it got so messy after sculpting Winifred that I had to organize it some. I'm sure as time goes by it will be obvious what works and what doesn't. I can't wait till I am organized, though. Got to practice and do it a lot.

Saturday, May 9, 2009


I am beside myself. Art Gekko Misty is with me as well as my wonderful son John and one of the best Art teachers in the world Carolyn. I couldn't be more pleased that the terrific artists are with me on my journey.


Debbie, you dear, I love your website. I am always inspired by it and I wish I had smaller hands to do what you do. Thanks for following.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Jodi and Nikki

I cannot underestimate the help from Jodi and Nikki. Thanks

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

In Progress

I probably should label the works in progress as bjc and ajc. I was lucky enough to locate some smips of the Creagers dvd on sculpting the face. I have watched it several times. There are full dvd's available but unfortunately tight finances keep me from purchasing at the present time. Definitely a future purchase. I need the tutoring.

Anyway, the figures displayed are works I am going to finish even if the faces don't look like I want them to. They have not been baked so I can work some more on them. Except for poor Winifred. But she is going to get added to with a bunch of other stuff. I know the items can be rebaked, but I am not willing to see what it would do to the paint, acrylic paint. I am fascinated by the fae and want to do a lot of figures to put around my home to remind me of all the fun and beauty in the world. And one of the figures is dead as a doornail so he is sort of rotting in places. A tribute to my new interest in Halloween.

With the wonderful techniques I have learned from Jodi, I am attempting to make a head that actually looks like a human being. Male or female is not important but it would be nice to be able to do both. On Winifred I made garments of clay but I may not do that on the other figures because I have a couple of fabrics that I can use. Hair? I don't know yet. Eyes? The ones I am going to use are clay. They will be painted with the rest of the figure. I would just love to see who these folks will be.

Next on my list is to learn to take photos of the objects I make so they are shown to advantage. I think my camera will do this but I don't know how yet. I will have to research it to see what I can do.

Thanks for coming and have a good day. I'm sculpting.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

lookin for the groove

I finally have been working more steadily. One of the things I know about myself is that I hate to do something if it won't be as good as I want it to be. I began work on Winifred Wombleford and got her to a point that it was time to bake her. Or so I thought. So I baked her. But the finished product turned out a bit rough and I was somewhat disappointed. I never thought of sanding. I knew that polymer can be sanded to a beautiful shiny finish for jewelry but that was not what I wanted for Winifred. So I began painting her. As an older woman she has wrinkles, salt and pepper hair, and a stocky and buxom body. I gave her a dress with detail. All of this was after baking. But now what. She doesn't look like I want her to look. I would love to have had some wool or something for hair but I don't. I have Winifred to a point of needing to add some non-polymer things to her and I have plenty of stuff for that so that is next. Then there is the seat. All of this is doable but I am still kicking myself for not sanding and it is definitely too late for that. I watched Liz Lomax's video and learned a lot from it. Boy is there a lot more for me to learn. I had said that not having money created a learning experience for me. So far, my improvising isn't so terrific. We'll see if things get better.

I have 3 other works-in-progress. I am working on Mortimer North, the dead dandy and took Nikki's lead by coloring him before baking. Of course there is now the need to dress him. And I need to decide how he will be presented and get a start on that. I have decided to use cereal boxes for walls behind the figures instead of foam core board because I have cereal boxes and I don't have foam core board. Anyway, I will get to practice mache too. I have a picture in my mind of how Mortimer should look but of course, I am back to the conundrum: will I be able to do it?

Next on my list is an elf, gnome thing. He is sort of cute. I haven't figured out how to make a figure look mean. Working on it. I have been poring over the figures on the blogs to see how others do it. Not trying to copy. Just to learn. Anyway, I love anything about the Fae world and all of the creatures we know about and those just in our dreams. I use this world often as an escape from harsh reality. My reality isn't always harsh but when I reach my limit, fantasy is a welcome break.

My 4th figure is also male(I like men) and he has a big nose, a not so great body and a smile. Again he isn't mean. Don't know what sort of creature he will be. I guess I'll have to let him tell me as I go along.

Another problem I have in the sculpting is lips. Don't know how to do them. I think I am going to scour some of the better clay books and see what I can find. I personally have small lips, which I don't like. Maybe that is why I can't seem to put a good lip on a doll.

If anyone out there has a good source for small pieces of fabrics, not quilting fabrics, please let me know. The figures are quite naked at the present. Not anatomically correct, but that is doable if necessary. I would love to make cloth clothing for some of the dolls.

Monday I will be publishing some photos of the figures I am working on. As usual, I take all suggestions and love the persons giving them. Thanks for listening.