Beauty helmet work in progress
This is my little modeling head. I design and carve my wax models for metal casting on her. She was supposed to become a beautiful doll 2 years ago, but I dropped the head just as I was about to put the last spring through her, and it fell right on the steel hammer under my desk and shattered. Then I cried, because she was about 3 seconds away from being complete. This is the only time I’ve ever broken a doll during assembly. And now she lives on as my head prototype.
Back to the present. This helmet was inspired by an illustration of my beloved artist Sulamith Wulfing. I’ve been wanting to make it for a long time, but kept getting diverted away from it by other commitments. And now I feel a sort of creative pressure relief after having released something I’ve been suppressing for months. I was just about ready to explode there. Feels good.
The ivy tattoes on Beauty’s arms and abdomen are directly inspired by another favorite artist of mine, who was a very influential figure in the birth of modern design, William Morris. Although his influence is always present in my work indirectly, it takes a very direct form on the body of Beauty. I’m usually not a big fan of sleeve tattoos, but I wanted to push the boundaries of my discomfort zone and experiment with the concept to create elegant and delicate wrap around designs that would look feminine and soft on her slender arms.
Engraving this tattoo has challenged all my previously established notions of intricacy when it comes to doll tattooing. The leafs especially, were driving me crazy.
Her veil is very soft French Bridal lace with tiny Swarowsky and cubic zirconium crystals attached to it for sparkle. I love overindulging in ornamentation and it was very difficult for me to resist draping the veil in beads and pearls from top to bottom. But I was trying to create the impression of lightness and mystique with this doll, and over-beading the veil was weighing her down visually and destroying its subtle elegance and grace. So, I limited myself to attaching the tiny crystals for a light, shimmering effect only. It was tough though.
Well, Beauty and the Beast should be in London on Monday. Unfortunatly I won’t make it to the opening as I still have some things to do in the studio before I leave for Europe again, but I will be stopping by London sometime in mid October.
I have more pictures of her to show, but I’m pacing myself. More coming tomorrow.
This entry was posted on Friday, September 3rd, 2010 at 8:18 pm
You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.