Sunday, October 30, 2011

Zozie Class

I have just returned from almost a week away in Victoria at a pleasant seaside town not far out of Melbourne called Tooradin. I was invited by the owner of Bear Essence, the very lovely Kim Garratt to teach my Zozie class over two days. Having it over two days instead of trying to squeeze a lot of work into one day made it quite a relaxed class - and I don't think anybody felt too stressed out (mostly me!)
Here are some pictures of the wildly different results from the class.

Looks like I'll be heading back there in January 2012 to teach a couple more classes, so if you live in Melbourne or Victoria and you are interested, get in touch with Kim at Bear Essence for more details. (Use the link above)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Been Busy!

Here's some stuff I've been doing:

These little softie dolls are a new design.

I love doing the occasional painting

And Julie, the person I made the little jointed "mannikin" doll for, has been having fun with wigs - here's a photo she sent me of the doll in a white wig. She even photoshopped a little tear into this picture! I think she looks amazing!

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Problem Of Joints

No, I don't mean sleazy bars, the kind some people smoke or the arthritic ones that some of us are plagued by...........I mean the problem of creating joints in dolls.
There is no doubt that any form of jointing in a doll is a bit of a compromise - you usually have to sacrifice some of the sculptural purity of your piece to achieve that joint mobility.
Of course, you can completely avoid the problem by completely avoiding any form of jointing, but it could be argued that a fixed figure is more a piece a sculpture than a doll ("doll" to many people implies a degree of interactivity and it is hard to interact with a rigid piece of sculpture, but that is an argument for another day. Suffice it to say that some things occupy a space somewhere between "doll" and "sculpture".)

Fixed figure - is it a doll?

You can create successful joints quite simply by sewing hinges into your fabric limbs like this:

Simple hinge joints - dolls can be very posable

Sometimes I like to create dolls with disc jointed hips and thread jointed shoulders:

And neck joints:

Sometimes I experiment with knee joints, which require a bit of forethought to be successfully executed in fabric.

Cloth knees

Some people are complete masters of the jointing problem - I'm thinking of those patient people who spend months making a BJD (ball jointed doll) with up to fifteen joints all strung together with elastic for total posability.....I'm in awe of that prodigious achievement! Maybe when I have a lot of spare time I might have a go at making one myself!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Melbourne Weekend

We have just returned from a wonderful five days in Melbourne - yes - it was Grand Final weekend, and no - we didn't go, although we got caught up in the parade on Friday after visiting the National Gallery of Victoria  (wonderful exhibition - the Viennese Secession  - Klimt, Schiele etc).
The reason for the trip was that Bob was invited to speak at an International Forum - "Climate Change: Social Change" which had attracted the likes of John Bellamy-Foster from the US and Ian Angus from Canada, along with numerous speakers from movements such as the Arab Spring and so forth. We learned a lot, but we also had a bit of playtime.
This is what I saw when I looked out of the hotel window on Sunday morning:

We took a tram down to St Kilda on Monday before we flew home - just to walk on the beach and also check out the cake-lovers pornography shops in Acland Street - we were only window shopping!

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