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Sunday, June 11, 2017

Mermaid - Complete

I finally finished the mermaid. I'm very pleased with her!  Next up... Age of Aquarius submission for Art Doll Quarterly, 2017 PC Challenge updates and a Pirate.

Thanks for stopping by.


Monday, June 5, 2017

Mermaid update


Here she is so far. As you can see my tail experiment was a success. I love how her tail came out and I didn't have to worry about burning the clay with a heat tool.

I'll post more pictures of her once she is complete. I need to distress her shell bra, add eyebrows and eyelashes and a necklace. I'm pleased with how she is turning out.

Thanks for visiting :)

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Angelina Film – The Baking Experiment

I’ve been working on a mermaid for a contest being hosted by Jack Johnston and I’m very pleased with how she is coming out. As I was getting ready to add her tail fin I did a lot of research. I looked at videos, I did a google search, I looked at YouTube and most of what I found recommended to add the fin then bake the clay used to attach it to the body with a heat gun. Yikes! That sounded a little scary to me.  Heat guns get hot, much hotter than the temperature necessary to cure clay so I thought I would do an experiment with baking the Angelina Film, on the doll, in the oven.

This is the faux tail I made for my 1st experiment. I used “The Ultimate” glue to attach the wires to the bottom layer of film. When adding the glue to the wires I used a needle and applied a thin layer to both the top and the bottom of the wire. I then added another layer of film on top of the wires and trimmed the excess film from around the wires. Once I had the basic shape I covered the base in translucent clay, making sure the bases of all the wires were enclosed in clay.

I baked the tail in a pre-heated oven at   ̊275. At first I thought it would be a total fail because the film immediately shrunk a bit, but then it stabilized. My original goal was to see if I could bake it for 15 minutes. That came and went so I continued for a total of 30 minutes which was my ultimate goal. Why 30 minutes? Because the clay that I prefer bakes for 30 minutes per ¼ inch to cure properly. I knew I could attach a tail with ¼ inch or less thickness of clay so this was the perfect amount of time.


Here is what it looked like when I removed it from the oven after 30 minutes. Notice that the film is not super shiny and there is a gap at the top where the two separated.


Here it is once I heat the film with a heat tool and shaped it with a candle flame. Using the heat gun adhered the two layers of film together and made it shiny and translucent.

I consider this a success.



For my second try I went with a larger tail, one closer to what I will need for my mermaid.

I used the same steps, gluing the wires onto the film and adding a second layer of film on top of the wires. Shaping it and baking it for 15 minutes. This time the clay that I used on then end was only 1/8 in thick so I did not need the full 30 minutes.

Here it is direct from the over

Here it is once I heated it with a heat tool and shaped it with the candle flame.

 Here are both experiments. I’m very pleased. Yes, I know the tails look a bit ratty and have soot on them, I wasn't going for perfect, just making sure the film reacted the way I wanted it to.  

***Before baking your Angelina film test bake a sample to see how the color shifts***

My next step will be to design the tail for my current mermaid. Scary stuff. I am so happy with how she is turning out that I do not want to ruin her with a bad tail, but she needs a tail!

Here she is trying on one of the practice tails. 

She just came out of the oven and now has arms. Next up I'll be adding her hands, a tail and her hair. Stay tuned for more pictures

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Lilac Fairy

I finished this sweet girl for the Jack Johnston fairy contest and displayed her at the Quincy Quilt show.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Mermaid - in Progress

This is the latest project I am working on. Once complete she will be sitting in an abalone shell holding a pearl. At least that is my current plan, we shall see how she feels about it this weekend.

I'll post more progress pictures this weekend.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Homage to Blondie

*** Update
Punk Rock Girl has been selected for the August Issue of Art Doll quarterly! I'm removing her picture until the issue is published. ***

I've been working on my Polymer Clay Challenge heads and many other projects. I'll be updating the blog this weekend with all sorts of fun things but today I'd like to share with you a doll I created for a challenge.

She is lovingly called Punk Rock Girl and is a tribute to Debbie Harry of Blondie.

I love music. It is an art form that is magical to me. Music has always had a special place in my life. When I was a baby my mother told me that I used to sing myself to sleep, I would sing when I was playing or in the car. Unfortunately, I cannot carry a tune as an adult but that doesn't stop the love or appreciation of those who can.

Deborah Harry is one of my heroes. She is a strong, powerful woman with an amazing voice. I've enjoyed her music for as long as I can remember and I hope you enjoy seeing Punk rock Girl and much as I enjoyed making her.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Clay Improv was at the Portola Quilt Show

I belong to an amazing group made of artists called Clay Improv and this past weekend we had a couple of tables at the Portola California Quilt show.

You may think...dolls at the quilt show? Really? Absolutely! First off, I have to tell you that the quilts at this show were just amazing. The detail, skill and workmanship that went into them is obvious when you walk along the aisles. There were so many varieties of quilts; hand quilted, machine embroidered, pieced, appliqued and more. It was so inspiring to be among these works of art.

Here are just a few of the stunning quilts that I saw

So the dolls... it was an honor to be included in the show. We had two tables just inside the door of the show. Our dolls range from cute to crazy and everything in between. They are made of polymer clay, fabric, porcelain and more. Our work was very well received. Many of the people who stopped by to talk to us had never seen anything like it. It was fun to talk to people about our art, the process and the fun.

Here are some of the dolls we had on display at the show

I think this was a pretty good fit! I'm looking forward to doing this show again next year!