PERFECTLY IMPERFECT-I may not be the best at what I do, but Nobody has MORE fun trying than I do! :)

Sunday, December 9, 2012

What I'm Working On This Week...

Hi there! I haven't posted in a few weeks and just thought I'd show you some of what I'm working on.

 I worked on Dollie Doll's facial features some more and added some hair. She's the 36" bed doll I'm making with a cloth body and a paper clay head. I also put a layer of black gesso on the head/ shoulders before adding the first layer of flesh ochre acrylic paint. She is now sitting upright in a drawer waiting for me to put her makeup on and attach her limbs, before dressing her. She's being very patient with me. :)

I decided to make another attempt at paper cloth making, and, using stuff that was handy to me, this is what I came up with. It's about 12 x 18", white cotton, with tissue paper, tea bags, napkins, ink blots, magazine words, and a written "to do" list, among other things, glued on with gel medium. This is my third attempt, and I haven't sewn on any of them yet, but I've discovered that if I want to use them as book covers I need to put the most interesting part on the right side of the cloth, so that it will be on the front of the book instead of the back. :o Anyway, it's fun to do! :)

I also got the bug, for some reason, to learn to weave, and in my research on the web, found out how to weave with yarn on cardboard, with instructions on making a cardboard loom. I tore the bottom out of a sturdy card box, measured 1/4" increments, dotted them, then cut them in each end of the board, then, using a skein of variegated crochet yarn and a yarn needle, I proceeded to weave a bookmark using a very basic weave. I enjoyed it immensely. It's very meditative. Above is while it's still on the board. I had to do more research on how to get it off and finish the ends.

This is the finished bookmark. I didn't leave the end threads long enough for longer fringe, and that also made the knots hard to tie. I would have also liked the bookmark itself a little longer, but, I'll know better on the next project. I learned what not to do next time, plus I enjoyed doing it, so it's all good! I'm thinking now I'll make one of thinner yarn with beads on the ends. I'll have to make another loom though. I have some mat boards upstairs that should work nicely for that! :)

I've also made another bunch of prints using my Gelli Arts printing plate. Love that thing! I haven't maade pictures yet though. And I've been working on the huge Contrary Angel painting some more. She's getting there! If I could ever work more than a few minutes at a time without being interrupted I might get her done. But there's really no hurry to see the final outcome. The process and the learning is what counts, and she's been one heck of a journey for me. :)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Things I've Been Playing With This Week

I'm thankful that I like to dabble in a lot of different things. I never get bored or lack for something fun to entertain myself with. I've been dabbling with several things since I last posted. Following are a few of the works in progress that I'm working on.

Dollie Doll's paper sculpted face is coming along slowly. Can't wait to see her in hair and makeup! She will be a 36" cloth boudoir doll when she is finished.

A granny square afghan that I started around 15 years ago, hated sewing the squares together, got bored, and left laying until last week. I suddenly decided to finish it. I now have half the rows completed. I still HATE sewing the squares together! lol This is my first, and probably my last, granny square project. :/

I watched a paper cloth tutorial by Diana Trout and decided to give it a try. The bottom one is my first attempt and the top one my second. The cloth I used on the first one was a little too thick, but came out ok. I also used paper towels where I had wiped paint up, tissue paper, a phone book page that I had drawn a face on, a cut paper flower, and some rice paper on them. Now I can hand sew or machine stitch on them and use them in other projects. Since I was learning, I just used materials I had in reach, but I look forward to making some more using better materials.

I did a quirky doodle sketch just for fun! It took a while for the image to show itself amongst the pencil lines!

Playing and experimenting with my new gelli arts gel printing plate. These are a few of my trials, most of them are on toned card stock. I used stencils as masks and stamps on some. The browns on most of them is actually metallic copper, and I used mostly fluid acrylics and some heavier acrylics, whatever I could reach at the time.

Can you see the little copper stars in the blue around the butterfly above?

Metallic copper in the background on the butterfly above.

Metallic copper and turquoise. The stars are from the sole of an old house shoe, hence the footprint look.

A page of text that I had drawn a doodle face on with a marker. I used the stencil, after I pulled it from the plate, as a stamp to make her a mask. She looks a little wonky doesn't she?

Metallic copper, blue, and magenta in layers above.

Metallic copper and ultramarine blue above. The heart shape is cut from a clean piece of turkey netting.

"A Time For Tears" is a few layers of turquoise, yellow ochre, olive green, and it picked up some color and line off the previous print, which gave it some added texture and depth. I collaged the text with the title on top. I'm thinking I may add a layer of wax over it. I'm not a great photographer, and it looks better in person. I love it!

Hope you've enjoyed seeing what I'm playing with as much as I've enjoyed the playing!

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you who celebrate it, safe travels, and enjoy your family and friends!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

What I'm Working On Part Two

Here is the rest of what I'm working on (playing with actually). I couldn't get the pictures to upload yesterday! :/

Learning to use my Gelli Arts gel printing plate. The harlequin prints at the bottom were my first attempts. The others quickly followed. It's hard to stop, once you get the hang of it. These are a few of the ones using stencils and acrylic paints (the ones in arm's reach) that I've made. They can be used to journal on, as a base for mixed media stuff, cut up and used in collage or art journaling, or whatever other ideas one can come up with. Fun!

This is a mini booklet using one folded sheet of paper that I learned in Dina Meyer's workshop in this session of 21 Secrets. These would make awesome poetry booklets. I made the white one in class, the the blue one the other day. I discovered this morning that not only are there two covers and six pages to journal on, but if I paint both sides of the paper before folding I will also have two 3-sided pockets and two 2-sided pockets between the pages to hold stuff. How fun is that?!!

Monday, October 29, 2012

What I'm Working On Part One

Hi All!

Praying for all of you in the path of Hurricane Sandy. May you all stay safe.

 I also want to apologize for having to put the word verification back on my comments. I hate it too, but spammers have to ruin it for everybody it seems. I guess they have nothing better to do. I took it off, but had to put it back, because I was bombarded with spam every day it was off. :/ Your comments really mean a lot to me and I appreciate every one. Sorry it has to be so much trouble to leave one. :(

Anyway, I thought I'd share some of what I'm working on this week with ya! OK? :)

This is a page where I used up leftover paint. I see a cowboy boot in there! I like it! :)

She has the beginnings of a nose!

These two pictures should be reversed, but the bottom one is a 36" bed doll that I have sewn and stuffed. Her arms and legs have not been sewn on yet. The top picture is the beginning of her paper clay face, using techniques I learned in a cloth and clay workshop with Jane Desrosier. I made a much smaller doll in the workshop and it turned out pretty good, so I'm trying it on a large one now. Fingers crossed that it works! For now I'm calling her Dollie Doll.

I've had this 5x7" gallery canvas painting started for a while. I worked on it some the other day, but it's still very much a work in progress. This was an image that emerged out of paint, and she forgot her neck, I think. Hope I can fix that! :o

One of my favorites! Three old friends!

It had been a while since I did any doodle sketches, so I've been doing one a day in my 18x24" sketchbook for a few days. These are a few of them.

This a doodle sketch in its beginning stage. I close my eyes, make several marks and swirls on the page, then let an image immerge. Nothing has stepped out in this one yet...but it will. Sometimes the images are a bit shy and it takes a while for them to show themselves. :)

I can use these images as a base for drawings, paintings, journal pages, tear them up for collage, or just enjoy them for what they are. They help keep my drawing/painting looser, plus it's good brain exercise and fun.

I was going to show you some more wips, but I had trouble uploading the rest of the pics, so there will be a part 2 to the blog. I'm kind of like a butterfly flitting from project to project. :)

The next part will include some prints from playtime with my new Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plate. I've been wanting one for a long time, and thought they were too expensive, but I finally broke down and ordered one. Love it!

I've worked some on all these projects, plus I put ANOTHER layer of paint on Contrary Angel's wings (Remember her? the very large canvas/mixed media painting I started months ago), wrote a poem draft, and brought down a Granny Square crocheted afghan that I started years ago to finish. The poem will be on my other blog when it's finished.

Hope you've enjoyed seeing what I'm doing. I'm sure having fun creating and learning stuff! :D

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Recycled Cereal Box Journal

One of the new handmade journals I learned in this year’s 21 Secrets session with Alma Stoller in Child's Play 2. It's made from a recycled cereal box. This is only a quick mock-up to help me remember how to make a real one.


I used textured scrapbooking paper for the covers. The binding is uneven stitching, which holds the signatures at staggered places inside. I can't wait to make one of these for real and add embellishments to the covers.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

"Luanna"-a cloth and clay doll

Hi there! Meet "Luanna", the newest addition to my family of hand made dolls. She was inspired by an online class I took from Jane Desrosier on the Cloth and Clay Doll group. She is 18" tall and made from cloth and paper clay. She is meant to be primitive looking. :)

I named her Luanna after my great-grandmother, whose old bedsheet I used to make her, and whose name was Rachel Luanna.

Here she is in her "basic black" birthday suit after being sewn, stitched, and sculpted. The cloth I made her from is a section of an antique bed sheet that belonged to my gr-grandmother, perhaps not the best choice, since it may have been a little more sensitive to the turning process than a new fabric would have been, but it was sentimental, so I used it. Then I had to make her some clay boots to cover up the little holes in her socks from the turning. :o

Sitting in her underwear, after she's been painted and had her face and hair done...
Reclining in her underwear...
Reclining after she's been dressed...

The skirt was made from a pair of my dad's old pajamas from when he had surgery in 1986. I thought they had a vintage look and color, and I used the olive green in the print to paint her bodice, etc. The pant leg wouldn't let me put the stripes up and down without piecing 2-3 pieces together, so I just used them horizontally. So here she's sitting while showing off her new boots with the little black buttons.

A close-up of her face. Her eyes are a little big for my liking. She reminds me of Bettie Davis. But I think she has character, and I learned a lot from her and Jane, so I can't wait to create her a sister. :) Luanna feels like one of my children, and she may not be perfect, but I love her. She was created from my heart. :)

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

LOLLY- Articulated Paper Clay Doll

Lolly has been in progress for a while and is my second attempt at a paper clay doll, the first attempt at articulation. She started out as an empty plastic lime juice squeeze bottle and a couple of sketches.

Oops! Caught by some stray spray ink!
Her head was shaped from a wad of tin foil and taped to her body with masking tape, which was then used to cover the whole thing.

The whole thing was covered with paper clay and features added to the face. Funny, I never did imagine her with hair after the first sketch.

Legs and arms were formed from rolls of paper clay, holes were punched in the top of each, and they were left on wax paper to dry. Here I've used straight pins to hold them in place. The feet and hands went kind of wonky on me, but it adds character, I think.

The limbs were taken back off and everything painted and let dry, then re-attached with the floral wire, which is really not strong enough, but it's what was handy. I tried some hair, but it just didn't work for her. She insisted on her favorite hat!

I tried to talk her out of this outfit, but she insisted. The skirt is a lace collar off a flea market clown doll with a can-can of net under it. The hat is meant to be kind of ragged and has a satin flower on it. It has great sentimental value to her.

The scarf was the last thing added. She wanted this color blue, and since I couldn't find anything else, I took a strip of bandage gauze and painted it with watered down fluid acrylic and let it dry before wrapping it around her neck. She was very pleased with her ensemble and did a little twirl, of sorts.

Lolly is kind of rough looking, but she's been through a lot of stuff. Despite that, she is a pretty happy person, though a solitary tear rolls down her cheek. I've learned a lot from her through our journey together and look forward to making her another friend soon. :)