Can it really be months and months since I have finished *anything*? Sigh... Unfortunately, yes indeed, it can. Thank goodness for the inspiration of my annual trip to Marshalltown, IA for Jean Bernard and Sherry Goshon's Dollmaker's Retreat!
This year's retreat was every bit as stimulating as I have come to expect. Sherry and Jean are generous teachers who do not hold anything back, and have the gift of dragging the creativity (kicking and screaming if necessary) out of every participant.
Everyone started with the same type of gourd as a base, though each individual gourd had slightly different shapes. Some were tall and straight, while the one I chose was a marvelously swoopy curvy one with lots of potential for implied movement. After basecoating the gourds with layer of acrylic paint, we then completely covered them with alcohol inks. I used yellow, several shades of red, purple, gold, and just a little green here and there. Because the inks dry almost immediately, you have to work quickly and spontaneously - my favorite way! It was a real rush to watch the colors do their thing. Almost like magic.
Her cape started life as a sushi mat. (Another new thing for me - I had never heard of one before. Perhaps I need to get out more?) I stained the mat with thinned down acrylic paints and attached it to the doll's torso with apoxie sculpt. The feathers softened the outer edge but didn't blend well into the mat, so I blurred that edge with several layers of Jean Bernard's signature "Bling Soup" - a mixture of micromarbles and glitter suspended in DG3 glue and smeared on with a toothpick (or in my case, my fingers.) I really don't know what posessed me to do it, but I also added approximately 150 flat back crystals. It took me most of an entire morning, but I am happy with the result.
Because the underside of the cape is so visible, I think I will go in and add some bling mix to this side as well. I just don't like the abrupt line at the base of the feathers.
The face is a resin cast of Jean's new "Scarlet" mold which I colored with Sherry's watercolor pencil techniques. Didn't Jean create a beautiful sculpt? Such a lovely, delicate expression.
Jake says she is one of the best things I have ever done. I am pretty happy with her myself.