I’ve been away from the blog for a few weeks, but with the summer drawing to a close and rains returning to Vancouver, it is time for me to come back online and share with you some new dolls I had made earlier this summer, before both my kilns suddenly went out of commission and left me stranded in doll-making limbo. That’s coming up next, but today, I’d like to share a small glimpse of my summer holidays with you. Chad edited a beautiful short film to commemorate a long camping trip we took with a bunch of friends (17 days in the back country of British Columbia!), while I made a map of our journey. Take a peek into my summer!
Hey everyone! I’m back from my summer vacation and I’m very tanned! Aaaand, I’ve finally created the ultimate summer vacation memory of running and jumping off the end of a dock into a lake for the first time in my life. I was only twenty or so years late for that event. It was profound, and pretty awesome.
In other news; I’m super excited to finally be able to share with you the accompanying movie from the photo shoot I did earlier this summer for Vogue Japan and… ta-da! Lux! This image here is a still frame from the movie. Watch the whole thing here. It was directed and shot by Lacey, who also shot my dolls for Vogue last year , while I animated them. The issue with the full spread is coming out this fall! I’ll post more info soon. Enjoy the movie and please let me know what your favorite scene is. And then I’ll tell you mine!
This doll will be in the 10th Anniversary exhibition at Strychnin Gallery in Berlin, on August 16th! She is already on route there and I’ll be out of town until Aug 5th, so please send your inquiries about her price and availability to Elizabetta at Strychnin Gallery.
I was inspired by the Renaissance oil painting traditions in creating this brand new face sculpt. It has characteristically small and puffy lips, delicate chin, gently arching brows, heavy eyelids and golden hair. Sleeping Beauty is nude porcelain doll in a 14k gold-plated bronze crown, set set with 11 faceted Amethyst gemstones and 9 fresh-water Pearls. Her removable magnetic wig is made of mohair as soft and as delicate as a spider web, while her translucent features and complexions are painted with china paint. Joints are lined with leather. She comes with my signature carbon steel stand with a flexible armpit hold and a custom tin box for safe-keeping.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I’m thrilled to announce that I’ll have a piece for sale at the 10th Year Anniversary show at Strychnin Gallery in Berlin, called ‘All (My) Starts’, opening the 16th of August 2013. This is a very special event that celebrates a very special gallery, and though I’m booked up to the gills, I couldn’t turn down the request to participate. I even made a brand new head mold to unveil at this exhibition. Sleeping Beauty! This is She! (in progress)
Gold crown set with Pearls and Amethysts. (in progress)
And my new little home studio all set up for work! (also, in progress). You see, this doll celebrates not just one, but two special events, because she is the first doll to be completed here, in my new work space and my new home. She symbolizes beginnings of things.
“All my starts”. August 16th. Strychnin Gallery. More pictures and info coming tomorrow.
Quick snapshot from the set. Had a very long and productive day shooting a spread for Vogue Japan with a great creative team! I can’t share any actual photos with you yet, but they are amazing. Ok, gotta go and crash asap. Need to replenish my creative juices for tomorrow.
So, on top of making new dolls for the Vogue photo shoot next week, I’m also right smack in the middle of moving to a new place. My new work studio is pretty awesome, but it’s been kind of ridiculous with everything happening at once. Timing is not ideal, but that’s the only way we could meet the deadline. For the last two weeks I’ve going back and forth between the two places since my new studio is not set up yet, and I won’t even get a chance to do it until after I get home from the shoot, because our last moving day also happens to be the day we have to catch our flight to New York. We’ll just throw all our stuff in the new apartment and leave for the airport. Sort it out later. Sleep later too.
I’m pretty excited about the kiln room too. Having been a spacially-challenged city-dweller my whole life, I’m thrilled to finally have a room just for my kilns. Feels so decadent. Can’t wait to try it, but in the meantime I’ve got some wigs to finish. I’m coordinating their colours to the product being advertized. Can’t tell you what it is yet, but it’s gonna be awesome!
Here are some additional photos of the Princess and the Frog doll that I haven’t posted before. She got sold by Strychnin Gallery in Berlin last month. In the wake of this doll, I’ve been getting a lot of requests for costumed dolls from collectors, and it upsets me that I have to turn people away, because I don’t have any available at the moment. As you know I’ve been really busy with the resin line orders for the past few months, but I wanted to give you guys heads up that I am cooking up new porcelain dolls, both tattooed and costumed. You know how much I like keeping secrets, wink-wink….So, look out for those. I may even do another ebay auction in the fall. Enjoy these for now.
Behold: A large, ball-jointed, porcelain doll! And she is going to be beautiful! And, very expensive. This is my first face prototype, with the rest of the body still to be molded. I’m especially excited about the potential for detail this scale will allow me. Just imagine the kind of mind-bogglingly detailed tattoos I can engrave on her body! Or the eyes I could paint! I’m almost dizzy with new creative possibilities.
But there are plenty of challenges too. I still don’t know if the large porcelain parts can handle this scale without totally deforming during firing. Even tiny parts tend to sag and warp during firing, and have to be routinely discarded because they no longer fit their respective ball-joints, so I’m very apprehensive about all this work having been for nothing when I fire a torso, or a leg and learn that this doll can not be made due to severe sag.
Face painting too, was more of a challenge than I anticipated. It was a totally different ball game than painting a tiny face. I struggled a lot with eyes and lips, but I expect I will get better and better the more I practice. Quantity eventually transcends into quality.
Unfortunately, I won’t find out if the project works a few months from now, until I fire and inspect all the parts for sag. But, I’m going all in regardless; Buying a large kiln, making the parts and having an electrician install install a new plug especially for it. All of that could turn out to be a colossal waste of resources and effort, but that’s the price of admission to being an artist.
No risk, no innovation. Wish me luck.
Or, here is Gris’ version of how the trip went down. Yup, pretty accurate. I guess that’s me on top, waving an American flag. Love this poster! It’s a limited edition, and you can still get it from the Baby Tattoo Books, signed by all of us, of course. A few limited edition Enchanted Doll prints are left over too. I think you would like them, because they are beautiful.
Thanks for being nice to me, guys, I had a great time driving around America with you. Look forward to doing it again! And thanks for all the fans who came out to see us on the road. It was a blast!
America is beautiful! And huge. Here are my interstate highway impressions of each state we drove through. I loved them all. Even Wyoming, a little bit.
Wow, Los Angeles is…sprawl-y, and huge, but not very tall.
South California…after a few hours of this landscape, I began to think I was on Mars.
Nevada. Yup, must still be on Mars…with some space weeds.
Utah. Definitely Mars.
Colorado. We circled all the mountains and the rest of it was like this. With the storm coming.
Kansas. Holly shit, we’re driving straight into the first tornado that ravaged Oklahoma on May 19th. It crossed the highway just ahead of us. We didn’t see it, but we felt its presence in the distance as our van shook with the force of wind and rain. We pulled over on the shoulder, not knowing what to do. There was nowhere to go but forward, into darkness. It crossed all of our minds that we could die. I’ve never seen anything like this before…and I was terrified.
Oklahoma. I’ve never seen a lightning storm like this before either. It happened in the wake of a tornado. The massive cloud above us seemed to have been filled with fireworks that went off every second or two, setting the whole sky alight. We drove under it for an hour. It was scary-beautiful. Awe-inspiring.
Texas. We raced out of Edmond, a suburb of Oklahoma-City the next morning with more tornado warnings on the way, and faced the placid skies of Texas, while it raged behind us. I couldn’t believe what was happening just hours away as I stood in this field and stared out into the hazy-hot horizon of blue and brown. All I could think about, selfishly so, was what if the tornado had struck a bit earlier, back there…while we slept…
New Mexico. And we’re back on Mars.
Arizona. In Sedona, I discovered a whole different kind of beauty to the lush, rainforest-covered mountains of the cool British Columbia. Much like that thunderstorm a day earlier, it was awe-striking. I tried a Rattlesnake for lunch (which tasted a bit like chicken), and couldn’t stop smiling at the red rocky formations.
I must return there.
And we’re back in California. What a trip. Loved every minute of it. Now I must draw a map.
Thank you, Baby Tattoo, for taking us there!
Hey folks! We’re one stop down on our roadshow, and five more to go. Tonight’s event at the Trifecta Gallery in Las Vegas was so much fun, that I hadn’t even noticed the time fly by. Upon arriving to the gallery, I was incredibly surprised to learn that someone had sent me two dozen roses. That just made my day. Thank you, B!!!
Only a few dolls were shown at this venue. I’ll be showing a different variety at each event. All of them will be shown together at Spectrum Fantastic Art Live in Kansas City (May 17-19)
We’ll be spending the night in Nevada, but first thing tomorrow morning we’ll be on our way again to the next venue at Night Flight Comics in Salt Lake City from 7-9pm.