Sunday, October 11, 2009

Doktor Pfeffer Makes Something Monsterous

Deep in the bowels of his hidden bunker, underneath the brick and steel of a nondescript building, Doktor Pfeffer is making something truly monstrous. Until now, his carefully guarded research -- the formula to create life -- was only a theory. Now, the culmination of his life's work is coming together, at long, long last.

Features emerge.

Doktor Pfeffer observes his work and decides it's time for a body.

First he constructs a skeleton.

Then, through careful grafting, he adds the Sculpey skin.

Ahh, yes, coming together, now to bake this creature and bring him to life...

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Beezle in the Boneyard

These are my adorable and much missed nieces: Hollyn & Lexie. Hollyn put in an order for a skelly beezle a few months ago and I promised her she'd have one in time for Halloween. Good thing I gave her a deadline.

This doll is sculpted from polymer clay and paper clay. The head is made from Super Sculpey, the body is paper clay over foil wrapped stryrofoam, the legs are paper clay over wooden dowels. I like this method because I can build a body around an already-baked head and let the body air dry. The paper clay is great, but for the heads where I put most of the detail, there's no substitute for Super Sculpey. The porous bone texture on the skull was achieved by gently pouncing a foam brush into the clay before baking.

This piece represents two new techniques: the fabric collar and anklets antiqued with a spray of walnut dye and the use of ground green foam mosses on the base. That mossy stuff is awesome and better yet, I didn't even have to buy it.

I found it in a long forgotten box of Mark's old train stuff in our attic. Jackpot. About three dozen baggies of the stuff in gorgeous landscape colors, course to finely ground. I saw Mark eyeballing those baggies with interest. I have since buried them where only I can find them. In the boneyard.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

In honor of Talk like a Pirate Day

As seen in the Fall issue of Art Doll Quarterly.

This Pirate is one of six Beezles featured, many thanks to Jenny Doh and Jana Holstein at ADQ.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Looooong overdue post: Random Arts

Debbi and I had a blast at Random Arts. Debbi taught Good Girls dolls:

We met lots of awesome women:

That's me with Constance Vahoulis.

Debbi and Jane with some Good Girls.

This was the yearly bee I give Debbi for her birthday.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Royal Skelly Arrives & other news

Look what washed ashore!

It's the Queen of Skelly Island, the Under the Sea swap lovely I got from my swap partner Marie Patterson. Ain't she a beaut? Be sure to go to Marie's blog and check out her Etsy shop too. I got an added bonus of one of her darling Spooky Spinners! Marie was a great swap partner and I am so glad that Zan matched us up! Zan, she's like eHarmony for art dollers. The Queen is now displayed in a place of honor on my Halloween shelf. Thanks, Marie!

And while we're on the subject of wonderful artsy stuff that arrives in my mailbox (if anyone else wants to send me presents, just email me for my physical address) I threatened Debbi and she sent me my very own Good Girl doll. Debbi will be teaching a Good Girl workshop this weekend at Random Arts I'll be too busy talking and eating Almond Macaroons and getting ready for my workshop to make one this Saturday, so good thing she sent me this one, huh?

All the Good Girl Dolls that Debbi makes have a little blurb under their skirts. Get your mind out of the gutter, it's not what you think. See, it's the bookbinder in Debbi that drives her to it. As she has said: "All good books have words." It only follows that all Good Girls should too.

And finally, to round out this mish mash post, here are couple little guys I made recently. A departure from my usual. I just went into my studio and started playing with clay and this is what came out. The Mouse Prince is about an inch and a half tall and the Bunny with the banner is about three inches tall. I'm diggin the little ruffled collars. I've seen Flora do them on her Wumbles with crepe paper and had to outfit a couple of my tinies, too. The mouse's is made from copper wire mesh and the other is wired ribbon.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Maniacs at Random Arts

Consider yourselves warned.

June 13th, Saturday
Random Arts
Saluda, NC

Two mini Mixed Maniac workshops!
And a book signing!
And wine while we sign!*

From 10am - noon Debbi Crane, my illustrious co-author, will be leading a larger scale version of the popular project she taught at MIU this year: a "Good Girl" fabric doll. She just sent me one and it is adorable. All materials supplied for just $25! How's that for a stimulus package?

From 1pm - 3pm I will be teaching how to sculpt a character of your own making from polymer clay, a la my Beezle in the Box . Yours might be a bat or an elf or a chicken. It's all good and it's all up to you. Again, you only need to bring your creativity and $25. If you'd like a discount, and who the heck wouldn't, $45 buys you a seat in both classes.

Debbi and I will both have works for sale available throughout the day, including some of the original works featured in our book, Mixed Mania.

Book signing and wining (but no whining) from 3pm - 5pm. What? It's the weekend. Drinking hours don't apply.

Call Random Jane to register for the workshops: 828-749-1165 or email her at randomarts [at] charter [dot] net

Class space is booking up fast, book signing is open to everyone including paparazzi. Hope to see you there.

*There may also be some almond macaroons too, as is the tradition.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Peter-Peter Trick-R-Treater

Cooky is organizing a fundraiser for her library in Massachusetts and asked if I could send a Beezle to be auctioned off for the cause.  This is Peter-Peter.  (Hey Flora - thanks for the collar inspiration!)

He's about 9" tall including the base.  Made of polymer clay, paper clay, wire, fabric and wood finished with acrylic paint and chalk pastels.  The collar is made from 2' wide wire ribbon.

The little beanie on his head cracks me up because the boys had hand knit caps like that when they were babies, see?  

Here were are in Cooky & Larry's back yard a million years ago with Hannah and Katie and Lily.  The punkin hats have come full circle.  Yes, I still have them, packed away with the dino suits

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Sea Beezles

Remember this swap organized by Zan Asha?  I made two sea creatures and let my swap partner Marie Patterson pick the one she liked more.  She picked the pink one.  I can't wait to get the piece that Marie made.  I'll post pix when I get it.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Bird Bath

The robin that built this nest abandon it Easter weekend after a terrible storm.  It was empty so she probably found somewhere more private than next to our driveway.  We waited to see if she'd come back but she never did.  Mark got it out of the cherry tree for me today.  A very nice Mother's Day gift.  I put the twin quail eggs in it and put it in our guest bath with my other bird themed goodies.

I added a mommy bird to keep watch over them. 
Here's a little tour of my bird bath.

Happy Mother's Day to all you mommy birds everywhere.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Trumpet has been in a bit of a funk lately. Some of you may know that Trumpet and Miss Maggie of Dear Daisy Cottage have had a bit of a falling out. Maggie's moved on. Maybe you saw the comment Trumpet left on the post that broke his heart.

Fickleness thy name is Maggie.

I thought we had something special. That we understood each other. Sure, these long-dog/long-distance things are seldom smooth, but now I see you have a new hound in your life. Flowers, Maggie? I never knew you like flowers. I thought that the occasional stick and dead chickadee was romantic AND original. But you sold me out for some lousy tulips and some soul full eyes.

Well, I hope you two are very happy on your little walk. Really. I'm not bitter. There are other dogs in the park.

If you want me I'll be listening to Sade on my iPup or watching The Notebook over and over and NOT THINKING ABOUT YOU. Or your cute little bandanna. Or the way your ears look all fluffy when you're napping.

Posted by: Trumpet | April 24, 2009 at 10:34 AM

I've been trying to cheer him up, get him "back on the horse" so to speak. I'm thinking of posting this for him on one of the dating sites, maybe Let me know what you think:

Single Black & Tan male seeks female companion who enjoys napping, chewing, and long walks. Chivalry is not dead, I will supply the plastic bag for pick up. I enjoy footwear, dead birds, and rolling in foul-odored, decomposing material. I majored in Liberal Arfs. My philosophy on life is that edible is a state of mind.

I'd like to share my perfect, romantic dinner with you. We'd begin with a flip-flop appetizer by candlelight followed by licking the remnants out of a Lean Cuisine tray with a side of Legos. For dessert: I would love to feed you a very collectible and expensive Yu Gi Oh card. We can finish with two clear pink marbles swallowed whole.

Sense of humor and aversion to Basset Hounds and tulips a must.

Monday, April 13, 2009

peek -a - BOO

I shipped off four boxes today to Art Doll Quarterly.  I can't show all of you what was in the boxes, but I can give you a peek and tell you to be on the look out for some Beezles on your newsstand this August.

Just in time for Halloween.


Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

He paid our debt to set us free.

And the dead are no longer dead.

Happy Easter!  Christos Anesti!*

For pix of some of my favorite Easter goodies, click here.

*(a week early to the Eastern Orthodox contingent)

Friday, April 10, 2009

Age of Aquarius

(singing to self) "This is the dawning of the age of the Under the Sea Swap hosted by Zan Asha at Wild at Heart Art, the Under the Sea Swap hosted by Zan Asha......"  

Oh. Hi. Um. Didn't see you standing there. So. Have you heard about the Under the Sea Swap Zan Asha is hosting? What? You don't know Zan?  Why, she's a new art dolling friend of mine with a super cool name. Sounds like she might be part anime or something, maybe related to this guy?

Anyway.  You can click on the badge below for all the details but basically, here's all you need to know: if you like art dolls and swaps, sign up at Zan's site before May 8th, ok?  I've already jumped in.  Yep.  I'm swimming in my first swap ever.  Debbi is off the deep end too.  Come on in -- the water's fine!

Here's a sample of Zan's work, it's an adorable Sea Kitten.  Not to be confused with these.  

You can get you some of Zan's cute creatures at her Etsy shop here. And remember: you should always wait at least 45 minutes after eating before signing up for any water-related art swap.