Thursday, July 29, 2010

TWO New Dolls!

Two new dolls today! Yay!!! The weather finally broke enough for me to get some photos!

Of course, the wind didn't like my flimsy backdrop, so I had a bit of a fight on my hands, there. Luckily, the dolls were more wind resistant.

First up is the Mummy! He's 14.75 inches tall, has a little bat hanging from his left arm, and glowing scary eyes! I made this guy in a burst of creativity, and he breaks pretty much every convention of my 'normal' dolls. His bandages are actual plaster wrapped bandages (I'm not sure now when I even got these things. I think they were originally for molding body parts for costuming). His belly, hands and face are all two part plumber's epoxy putty. I sculpted right onto the foil and wire armature. His eyes are glow in the dark polymer clay, and his bat is also the plumber's epoxy. He was painted with acrylics, and sealed with a heavy coating of matte finish acrylic sealer. He was a lot of fun, but plaster and epoxy putty are both reaaaallly messy! Also, the epoxy hardens REALLY fast. Working on this guy was a race, in places.

The elephant monk is sort of the result of the "Gas Mask Monk" but not entirely. Monks kind of interest me, but having an unusual monk ends up kind of distressing. At the start of the elephant sculpt, he was intended to be a warrior, complete with armor and weapons, but he changed on me. The scars on his face, arms and legs tell an interesting story, though. He's also an experiment in a lot of ways. His head and limbs are polymer clay, his body is papier mache. The skin on his body and on the joining areas are an experiment in papier mache....mostly glue, water, and paper towels, believe it or not. It added a cool wrinkly texture, so I'm not complaining. His ears are wire and cloth soaked in glue. Oh, as for the details... The elephant on his necklace is a metal trinket I picked up at Hobby Lobby, the wire jewelry is all hand made by me, save for the necklace, which I assembled, but I didn't put together the individual links. He's about 10 inches tall.

Also, I've listed the "Rabbit Magus" painting on Etsy for $250. If you want to get it, now's your chance!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

It's time for Halloween! (REALLY!)

Okay, so I know that Halloween is still a good ways off, but I decorated the living room for it, anyway. The picture is of my mantel, and it's my Lemax Spookytown Village. There's a couple of really good reasons why I'd do this so early, I'll share.

Firstly, I LOVE Halloween, and as a result, I try to get ready for it for forever. I put up my decorations as early as I can get away with it. I also start working on new Halloween stuff as soon as I can so I'll have new stuff to put out. I particularly love props and decorations...go figure.

Secondly, I sell Halloween styled stuff in my Etsy shop. I don't mean to, but that's where my art naturally goes. I blame my Mom. My first stuffed animal was a big brown fuzzy bat that she sewed for me. I'm sure she has some pictures of me in the crib with a bat, still. Anyway, that makes Halloween a money maker for me, with luck, but I have to get started on it hard-core, really early if I plan on having any sales in October. It's inspiration for me.

As a result, I've just finished a mummy sculpture, an 'ocular worm' (costume prop), I'm working like mad on my goblin art doll...he's the biggest I've made by far, and I'm working on a light up 'magic potion' and peeking monster (goes behind shelves or at a door frame).

The finished stuff will get pictures as soon as the stupid weather here clears long enough to let me take some. I also need some ideas, folks. I don't want to do a bunch of the same creepy stuff that nobody wants to buy! Hehe. Wish me luck!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Trip to the zoo

Howdy, all. I spent yesterday at the North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro. It was awesome and fun and HOT. Most of the animals were just lounging, like the Mountain Lion and Crocodile above (Yes, I took those photos! Yay!).

I got to see some gorillas up close, which was VERY exciting for me, as I love them, but the glass was too dingy to shoot through. I also got the impression that the male gorilla wasn't wanting his picture taken, anyway. He was laying with his back against the glass, and when people started tapping the glass, and yelling to get his attention, he grabbed a cloth, draped it over his head, and walked away, back to the glass the entire time. One of the girls was much more social. She had her nose against the glass watching us.

I also saw some really cool birds, and found out that I really like poison arrow frogs, now that I've seen them live and in person. I used to not think much of frogs, other than that they were nasty. Now I think they are pretty friggin' cool.

I was disappointed to not see a fox, other than some fuzzy stuff in a pipe that was supposedly an arctic fox. I don't blame it for trying to stay out of the heat, though. I also didn't see any hyenas, but I'm not sure if there were any there or not. By the end of the day, we had only gotten through most of the zoo...the lion area and lemur island got bypassed.

Anyway, that's what I did...and I got some pretty cool photos out of it. Maybe I'll work on some more wildlife related stuff, soon. Of course, I've got a two headed deer I'm working on, and that counts as wildlife, right?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Nothing new to report yet.

So, I felt like I should post and say that I've got nothing...for now.
I'm working on a sculpture and a doll, but neither are done. I'm also working on an acrylic painting, and when it's done, there will be another 'Two Paintings' post.

Until then, click this link and listen to They Might Be Giants sing about Paleontology.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Vinyl Toy Mods

Today I'm showing off some of what most people would not call art. These toys were modified by me! Yay! I've always had a fascination with making could make a good argument for all of my costuming and prop building to be an extension of the desire to make toys. Heck, I've made puppets and dolls...I'd love to make an action figure (I've modified one), but these are just modified.

The My Little Pony dolls (MLPs) were my first foray into modifying vinyl toys. I had no idea that this was actually a popular movement when I first did 'Steam', the black cyborg pony. I knew that I'd seen a couple of customized MLPs, and that it looked pretty cool, so I bought one with the sole intention to ruin it (which is apparently a sin in the Custom MLP world). I had fun, so I bought a second one and made the My Little Punk custom. Both use a lot of plumber epoxy putty for their build-up and changes.

After this growing trend caught on full force, Munnys became available. They are blank and made just to customize. They also cost a lot...or more than I'm willing to pay, anyway. Thankfully, when a trend becomes a trend, there's others out there who will capitalize on it. RoseArt made some Munny knock-offs called Color Blanks. They are available here and there (K-Mart and Craft Stores among others), and are around $5 each....well within my price range.

The 'Bitch' and 'Bone Cow' are both RoseArt Color Blanks that I sculpted on and painted. The added bits are all plumbers putty, and the paints are just acrylic. I even made a little bull whip out of epoxy for the little dominatrix doggie. I suggest that anyone and everyone try messing with this stuff at some point. It's a lot of fun, and not nearly so nerve wracking as doing 'real' art (unless you decide to paint fish nets onto your vinyl toy....that was tense).

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Two Paintings part 5

Alright, I've went with two paintings instead of three this time, because I couldn't get three together arranged in any kind of useful way on the blog. Not a huge problem, though. I'll just wait to post a third one.

First up is "The Joker" which is exactly what it claims to be. It's 24"x30" Acrylic on canvas, and is currently framed and hanging above my mantle. It's not for sale and never will be, as I'm very hesitant to do any real copyright infringement. DC Comics is owned by Warner Bros. now, anyway...they are powerful. I did this piece specifically to go in my living room, which is slowly turning into a shrine for DC heroes and villains.

Second up is "Good Book" it's 16"x20" Acrylic on Gallery Wrapped Canvas. It was sort of an experiment in shadows, more than anything else. It's also just a standard anthro painting. No real story behind it, other than I wanted to see how such a painting would turn out.

Next up will be my attempts at the whole DIY "Urban Vinyl" Toys. If you aren't familiar with the term, you can either look it up, or wait until tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Donkey Costume Update: Hooves

I finished the hooves for my donkey fursuit yesterday. The shoes were just a pair I picked up on clearance for $13. The hooves are sheets of styrene held onto the shoe with 14 gauge wire, and covered in epoxy putty. Yesterday I painted and sealed the hooves, and so they are now ready for the next step, which involves hiding the shoes the rest of the way!

I also cut out the pattern, yesterday, so I will start sewing the mock-up jumpsuit soon. After all the fitting and alterations are done, I will be able to move on to working with the fake fur.

I also started cutting out the foam padding that will be under the suit. It will give me digigrade legs, with luck, and make me have a cool donkey belly. Maybe a big donkey butt, too. While that sounds silly and boarders on sounding dirty, or at the least very juvenile, it's true. The over all form I'm wanting for this suit is a bit of a cartoony look. Upright donkeys usually have a defined rump that sticks out further from their backs.

I'm also working on the eyes and will have another update soonish. Next will be more paintings...Probably 3 instead of 2 next time, so I can finally be caught up with my acrylics, unless I've miscounted.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Two Paintings part 4

First up, we've got "Gas Mask Monk" (not very creative, sue me). It's 24"X30" Acrylic on Gallery wrapped canvas. It's a bit of a post apocalyptic, with a nice touch of Tibetan Buddhism thrown in for good measure.

The monk's robe is a little brighter than a traditional Tibetan Buddhist robe, which is a break from normal post apocalyptic works...but I didn't want to do another brown painting. I'm not sure where buddhists stand tattoos, but this guy's got one.

The second piece is an untitled soldier. It is 12"x24" Acrylic on Gallery Wrapped Canvas. The odd size really dictated layout to me. Not much to say about this one, it was more playing than planning.

Next up will be the donkey costume update.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Two Paintings part 3

Two more paintings today!

The first, "Crescent and Fae" is loosely based on a digital painting I did some time ago called "The Crescent Experiment." The wizardly creature is a bit different in this one, but close enough that he could be related to the other one.

It's 36"X24" acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas. It was a paint in the butt in a lot of ways...the robe in particular did not want to ever satisfy me with it's shading. The little fire fairy was just for fun and to give the crescent wizard something to talk to. Having a primary color palate was interesting to work with. Lots of red, blue and yellow with no purple or green or orange (maybe a little orange) was kind of odd. Anyway, it's huge and I'm happy with it.

The Green Dragon basking was one of my first paintings in this entire series, being done in mid May. It's 24"X30" acrylic on canvas. Lots of browns, yellows and greens. He's an entirely different dragon style than the red dragon, and it makes him look way more peaceful than the red, which looks to be half starved and a little insane. The green dragon was based a lot on dinosaurs and actual lizards in terms of it's head shape and body shape, where as the red dragon has the mammalian predator body shape.

As a side note, I made the frames for both the Green Dragon Basking, and for the Cyclops Sunset out of hardware store stuff. Maybe a post about that, later.

I'm taking a break for the holiday, and will be back Tuesday with more stuff...either the donkey costume progress report or two more paintings.

Friday, July 2, 2010

The Famous Sideshow Goat!

The last time I was at Hobby Lobby, I saw, tucked into the corner of the clearance section, a pair of Safari Ltd. Mountain Goats. I picked up both little plastic goats for around $3.25 and took them home.

At the house,I gave both the goats a bath (really! soap cuts some of the oils on the surface of plastics...important if you are going to paint them), then I cut off one goat's head with my Dremel. Then I cut and sanded on the neck stump on the head until it looked okay along side the other head.

I pinned the head to the fully intact goat, used a bunch of gorilla glue and some masking tape to hold it all together and let it sit overnight.

The next day I untaped the goat monster, and sculpted the gaps and seams with milliput, a two part epoxy that's absolutely great for such projects. Using wet toothpicks for most of the sculpting, I managed to match fairly closely to the original fur pattern. I also built up the goat's pelvis a little to make it have more of a sway back. Supporting two heads is hard on a body! I also added a horn to one of the heads.

After the sculpted parts had cured (about 4 hours), I pulled out my acrylic paints, and did up a quick paint job on him. Then I sealed the whole thing with some acrylic sealer, and now he sits on top of the piano.

This goat was a lot more fun than I thought it would be, and turned out fairly well too, I think. In fact, it was so fun that I bought some more Safari Ltd. animals yesterday....

I'm not sure if it counts as art, but it counts as a sideshow type thing. I've got more paintings to post, and some updates on the donkey costume (with photos!) coming up!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Two Paintings part 2

Two more of the many paintings I have to share.

'Beast of Legend' was a bit of an experiment for me, and I'm not quite sure if I'm satisfied with the results. It's acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas, 16x20.

I used a lot of extender in the sky, but I don't have a lot of experience with extenders, so I'm a bit iffy of it. I think the sky turned out okay, though. The trees were a lot of fun, slapping a fan brush around always makes me happy!

The Rabbit Magus is also acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas, and is also 16X20. The little magic runes flying about on this piece don't actually mean if you see a symbol that DOES mean something in there, that's my bad...unless you like it....then I put it in there for YOU.

I'm sure there's a story behind the Rabbit Magus, but I honestly couldn't tell you what drove me to paint him. I was just taken by the idea of a hooded rabbit with magical stuff floating around him.

Tomorrow I'll break from shoving paintings down your throat...but we can get back to that next time. Check back tomorrow for the Sideshow Goat!