Monday, 29 December 2014

Head sculpting

It's been a rather long time since my last post! A variety of life events swinging like a pendulum between good, bad, ugly and good again pulled me away from my creativity for a while and I even fell out of love with dolls for a time. For some reason I judged them, or rather myself, as being childish, 'not proper art' - whatever that means. But I've come back, and I feel more at home and content in myself for having done so.

So without further waffle, here's what I'm currently working on.

I've set myself a challenge to work only on heads until I reach about 50 heads. The point is that practice makes perfect as everyone knows, so I'm working on that.

I found that when I tried to make a whole ball-jointed doll from scratch, it was quite challenging! Although I’d done a bit of sculpting on my degree, I’d never done anything jointed, where parts are so dependent on each other. I found myself spending so much time sanding or shaving down, then re-building, then sanding down again, then remodelling, then sanding again - that it was driving my crazy!

So I’m going back to basics. First, getting happy with the head sculpts, then I'll focus on practising other body parts to ultimately put them all together.

This is head #1, at sculpted stage, and sanded. I'm using Apoxie polymer clay which I mentioned in previous posts and I think is fabulous.

As I won't be casting this head, I've gone ahead an spray painted it with about 4 thin layers using Montana Acrylic spray paint, which I bought from an art shop.
(Sorry about the blurriness - it was late!)

Next for the blushing. As I don’t have any Mr Super Clear Matte Varnish spray, I've opted for Citadel Purity Seal as a substitute. It says Satin Finish on the can but to my relief it's come out more matte than I expected.

Another spritz of varnish spray tomorrow and some more blushing to follow!

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Doll making - Work in Progress

Hi there!
Here's what I'm currently working on -  my first human ball-jointed doll!

Ok, it's a work in progress so I know the proportions look a little off at the moment, but hopefully that'll improve as I work on her... And I can say as a novice - it's tricky work and is requiring a lot of patience! But great fun and a good learning curve ;-)

The photo isn't brilliant as my camera has a somewhat over-powered flash, so unfortunately you can see every flaw... but I'm getting somewhere slowly but surely. 

As you can see I've yet to do the hands and I intend to make double-jointed knees and a torso-joint under the rib cage. I was considering a hip joint too, but I think with this being my first attempt at making a human figure I'll skip that this time. That, and I'm getting impatient! ;-) 

I also still need to do the ankle joints of course. 

I'm using Apoxie Sculpt clay which I love, as you can sand it, carve it, polish it, etc. and it goes to a good, hard finish with no shrinkage. It's not brittle either like some of the more ceramic-feeling epoxy clays. 

I think it's a US brand but being in the UK I get it from the lovely Elise at  - she also has a great range of nylon, Saran, & Kanekalon doll hair for re-roots and custom dolls.

My work has also been made a lot easier by my lovely new Dremel 3000, which was a Christmas pressie from my super helpful hubby :-) 
I absolutely love this tool, especially the mini extension tool, because it so light and perfect for little jobs where you need better control. I can see myself using the mini-attachment more than the actual tool it connects to, because if you have small hands like me, it gets really awkward trying to holding a big, heavy tool like a pen!

So that's all for now, I hope to have some more (and better!) pictures ready soon to show some progress with her.