Thursday, December 29, 2011

Tis the Season!

I missed last weeks blog post because I've been a busy little bee. I recently received a commission to make a pair of dolls for the same lovely couple that I had previously made dolls for. I also have a magazine assignment that I was working on at the same time. I have to learn to manage my "free" time with my "work" time. I was able to do my assignments on time, but I didn't make any to keep my blog up to date.

Anyway, the call came in to make a pair of whimsical dolls of mom and dad, and include all the kids, too. From the information I received about the recipients, they seemed like pretty swell people. Silly, fun and lighthearted. So that's how I wanted to represent them in doll fashion. They are also Oregon Ducks fans, so I worked the team's colors into dad's Hawaiian shirt.

The four "kids" are represented by tiny Ducks, but I changed the appearance of each kid "Duck" based on personality cues I got from my client.

Rough draft sketch
Body part layout plan.
Mid-painting process shot.
Cut out and assembled.
Final version with everyone assembled and arranged on the background.
Duck detail.
Final. Complete with smudgy fingerprint (that was hopefully removed before delivery)
I found this great shadowbox at Craft Warehouse. I really like the
color of the stain on the wood. Originally, my fiance was planning
to make a shadowbox from scratch for this project, but we're still in
the planning and designing stages. He didn't want to give my client
a shadowbox that he wasn't proud of.

I have a couple of ideas floating around for some dolls as a personal project, but something I'd love to share with others. But first I have to finish another paying gig. A creative girl could totally get used to this! I love that I feel like I'm being a productive person, and although, I'm not raking in a ton of dough, it's enabling me to be able to purchase supplies, which continue to allow me to create!

These last handfull of doll projects have really motivated me to put myself out there for custom portrait dolls. I've always been a little hesitant to offer portrait-based dolls because I'm really finicky when it comes to portraits. I want the image I'm creating to look EXACTLY like the person it's supposed to be. But with cartoony style drawings, there's a little more leeway when it comes to resemblance. What do you think?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Dolls Galore!

I promised that I would share the doll that sparked a mass commission fest for me. I did it as a gift because my friend Evan is a great small business owner, loves what he does and inspired me to take my love of art and work toward opening a brick and mortar store in Vancouver. While life has me tied down right now, I'm in the serious planning stages for this venture. Anyway, Evan is a great guy and has been commissioning me like crazy. I can't complain!

So here he is:

I don't have any photos of his rough sketches, but here's his final body part layout before I started painting.

Painted and cut and ready to be assembled!
Paper chosen, body assembled and doggies applied!


Another angle before they go in a frame.

Here he is with his pups in their frame.

We (I say "we" in the sense of my fiance and I) are attempting to make shadowboxes by hand for this next commission I'm working on. I think making them ourselves is a great way to keep everything handmade and lets us work together. He's excited about working with his hands, which then makes me more excited to work. I love partnerships!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

In the Meantime

I'm a week behind on my self-imposed weekly blog posting. BUT, I'm doing it far more often than I used to. So there.

I just started another paper doll commission, and I couldn't be happier. I really enjoy creating these for people. It really fuels my creative fire to know that something I've created is making someone (or more than one person) happy. I've said it over and over again that this IS why I do what I do.

My last commission was from a friend that I had made a doll for. He loved his so much that he wanted to have me make one for his hubby. They're one of my favorite couples, so how could I resist?

It's tough creating art for an artist. The subject of my paper doll is also a doll artist, but more of a three-dimensional sort. I've learned to overcome my paranoia of doing portraits or portrait-type images of people other than myself. I'm such a perfectionist that I worry that the faces won't turn out looking EXACTLY like the person it's meant for.
This is my third commission that is supposed to resemble the subject of the art.

So while I'm working on this new commission, I'll share images of my last one.

Just hanging out, getting ready to be assembled!
A simple progress layout. Photo, sketch and final product.
I included images of his work with him.

Finished product inside his shadowbox.

Next week, images of the doll that I created for his husband!