Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Mall Craft Festival Event

For those of you who were anxiously awaiting news of my mall craft festival adventure, here is the update you have long been waiting for.

The 2 day event was a little slow as I would have expected for this time of year. I think the event would have faired better if the festival had taken place more towards the end of October or the beginning of November. The nice part about it was that it was indoor and in the air conditioning. Here in Florida, that is VERY important. Over all, it was an excellent opportunity to show my dolls, especially since it was the first time I had showed my dolls in a craft festival or show setting. It also helped me to know where I stood in opinions to potential customers and how I was accepted by other crafters as well. Not only this, but, it was also nice to see how I handled putting up a small display, and what I can change in the future to make it more efficient if I should decide to participate in another festival function. In the end, I think I did very well in all aspects and am quite pleased with my results. It was nice to meet potential customers, other artisans, receive possible leads on other show type events, and get the feedback that I have been needing for my work.

So, I guess you are all probably wondering how I faired with the 40" santa. The poor fella, he's been through an awful lot in the past week, but he did indeed make the trip to the mall for the show. I managed to find some nice faux leather amongst my stash of goodies, and made him some very nice make-shift mittens. Despite his tragic accident, he came out rather dapper I would say. You can take a peek for yourself here:
mall show2
Now, I must tell you about what ever happened to his wonderful hands that I had created for him. Just prior to the show, I decided to piece back together his fingers. I must admit, they came out looking pretty good and in some cases, unless I had pointed out the damaged areas, you would never know the devastation that they had been victim too. I took the hands with me and placed them up on the table as part of the display, just for a conversation piece. I figured, since Halloween is right around the corner, it might be fun to have a couple of hands laying out there next to my business cards. :-)~ (wicked sense of humor...I know lol) Well, Saturday, I had already been at the mall for HOURS. I arrived there just before 9:00 a.m. and it was now just past 7:00 p.m. and by this time I was literally dragging and praying that the last couple of hours would go by quickly. ( I had to be there until 9:00 p.m.) Just about that time, a fella and his wife came waltzing by my table. The gentleman happened to glance down at my table as he was passing by and spotted the pair of hands laying there. He stopped dead in his tracks and snatched up the hands to have a closer inspection. You would have thought that Michaelangelo or Leonardo DaVinci had created them the way he spoke about them. He was soooo excited about these hands, that he had to show other people passing by my table just how wonderful they were. Then, the ultimate question landed down on my lap. He wanted to buy one of the hands. Of course, I had not planned to sell them so I was dumbfounded he even asked me. I think my jaw must have hit the floor and I am sure I must have stuttered when he asked me how much they were. Well, I finally decided to let the gentleman buy the one hand that he was so amazed with, and he in turn, made his wife stick it in her purse and went sauntering off through the mall like a kid on Christmas morning who just opened up the biggest treasure under the tree. I was happy to be able to make up for my losses to buy more clay to redo the hands for the santa, and he was happy that he had found a wonderful treasure. So, we were both winners. All I can say, is if the gentleman who bought that hand ever reads this blog, to him I want to say thank you. You have no idea what I went through to get those hands there to that show event. Just your act of kindness and true spirit of sincerety in the quality of my work gave me a new found joy and appreciation for what it is that I am capable of creating with my hands. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for breathing a new wind into my fallen sails.

And now, just a few pictures of my entire display. I sure hope you folks are not bored out of your noggins yet. lol
mall show1
mall show3
mall show4
mall show6

Also, I never did post a picture of any of the finished ornaments. So, I think I'll take the time to do that now.
mall show7
mall show8
mall show9

In closing of this blog, I also thought I'd share with you the project I began to work on at the mall show. I had thought I would begin a new pair of hands, but I never had the opportunity to create the armature prior to the event. So, instead, I did have some materials with me to begin working on a new fairy. This one I am going to do something a little different than what I normally do. She will fall into the spirit of Halloween and be a dark fairy. Since it is something I have never done before, it should be interesting to see what my dark side will bring forth. After working on jolly santas, it will be nice to have a change of pace. Keep in mind, she is in the very early stages of development and has A LOT of work yet needed on her.
dark fairy wip2
dark fairy wip1
dark fairy wip3

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the pictures from the mall event and the new ones of my new current WIP. Please feel free to contact me at any time with comments or interest in purchasing my work. It is always a pleasure to hear from you.


Friday, September 25, 2009

Putting Humpty Dumpty back together again

After taking a day rest away from Humpty Dumpty Santa to regain my composure of the shock of his face plant, I have now formulated some new ideas with the help of much needed rest and my good friends here in the doll making world. Brainstorming is a wonderful thing and rest is always the best.

I woke up this morning with a new take on the entire incident. The first thing I did was grab up his broken hands and the bits and pieces that I salvaged from the wreck and proceeded to piece them together. Amazingly enough, for the damge, they do not look that bad. But, they are still not acceptable for this wonderful Santa. I will still have to make new ones. So, with the help of wonderful friends, I have decided that today I will whip up some quick mittens in the place of his hands. This will only be a temporary fix mind you. Only enough to give the impression of what used to be hands and to keep his little nubbies warmed up. :-D

Since his hands are somewhat pieced back together, I intend to bring them with me along with the santa as part of his display. In the meantime, hopefully today, I will fashion a new hand armature for the Humpty Dumpty Santa. And, this weekend, while at the craft event, I will begin sculpting the new pair of hands. This way, onlookers can enjoy not only the finished product, but also take part in watching the sculpting process. So, the king Santa will still make his appearance tomorrow at the Lake Square Mall craft show. He will just be minus his wonderful hands being attached to his body and instead, will be sporting mittens. I also plan to redo his base today. So, there is a lot to accomplish in a short period of time before I head to bed tonight.

Not only will the Santa's be making their appearance tomorrow, but, a lot of my other dolls that are available will be there as well. Along with a great deal of Santa ornaments. Unfortunately, I'll not have anything special for Halloween, but, you'll just have to check back on my website. I do have a plan for a piece, but I just have to get the chance to sit and get to work on it.

Anyway, for those that can make the event at Lake Square Mall in Leesburg it is Saturday and Sunday during the Mall hours. I am not sure where I'll be located in the mall, but I'm sure there will be other nice things to see while you are there too!

In the meantime, I'm off to finalize things and work with Humpty Dumpty Santa.

Hope to see you there,

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Finally santas are finished!

It has been some time since I was last able to post, give or take a few weeks. The surgery went great, and my foot is looking more like a foot now. It slowed me down a little as you might have imagined, but in the meantime, I was busy working on the santas to have them completed.

Well, here is the one everyone has been waiting for I think. I had been searching around trying to find a place to take a picture of him because he is so tall and I needed the appropriate lighting. Unfortunately, no matter where I went and no matter what I did, he wanted to tip forward, even in his stand. Finally, I found a place in my kitchen with enough light and took a picture. Unfortunately, I realized he was missing his prop, which was supposed to be a stick horse he would be holding in his hand. Well, I turned to grab it and he did a face plant smack dab in the middle of my kitchen floor. The first thing I seen was bits and pieces of his fingers in all sorts of little pieces. Immediately, I knew those were not repairable. So, I stood there with my mouth all agape and I didn't know whether to cry or to get sick. Slowly, I mustered up enough courage to pick him up and inspect his face. Luckily for me, that was unscathed. So, the only harm done was his hands and a couple of scratches to the front tip of his boots. Long gone are those marvelous hands. Unfortunately for me, I do not have time to redo his hands before this weekend. Which REALLY makes me very mad and I could spit fireballs for it since he was supposed to be my center piece for my display. So, now, I'm left with trying to figure out what went wrong and how to fix it before the next attempt. I think the armature was a bust to begin with even though initially it felt like it was nice and strong. I should have just went with my better judgement and used pvc. But, that is what I get for being in a hurry and doing what I thought was the next best thing. So, anyway, I think I can get his head off the armature, maybe his boots if I'm lucky. I know I can get his suite off and I can always remake his skin. No biggie. But, it's just the time it took that makes me sick. Well, anyway, here is his picture before his tragic accident. Hopefully, I can bring him back even better the next go round. But, without further adieu, here he "was/is". Again, do not be so sad, he will be back again, stronger and better than before. If I made him the first time, I can do it again!
40" santa finished

Now, the next 2 are the 18" santas.

The first one is called "Harness Inspection"
harness1 complete
harness4 complete

The next one is my winking santa:
winking1 complete
winking3 complete
winking2 complete
winking5 complete

At any rate, I'm truly sorry you had to wait so long for these pictures. But, sometime circumstances fall into place ahead of the best laid plans. Hopefully, there will be more santas to come before the Holiday season kicks in. I also plan to add a couple of African-American Santas as well. In the meantime, I will be rethinking the tragedy above with the 40" santa.

For those of you are are local to me, you will be able to see the 2 santas along with my other available dolls this upcoming weekend at Lake Square Mall for their 1st craft show. I was really hoping to have the 40" santa, but I really do not think there will be enough time to recreate his hands in such a short period of time. I will have to wait to have him ready for the festival in November at Lakeridge Winery in Clermont, Florida. Perhaps, by then, I can perfect the armature and maybe have another 40" santa ready to accompany him.

I hope you like them. I would love to hear some feedback on them as your comments let me know what you think of my work. Good, or bad, it is how we grow as artist.

Hugs to all,

Thursday, September 3, 2009

At long last, finally a new update to my WIPS!

I know that everyone must have been hanging off the edge of their seats and eating what is left of their fingernails waiting for these guys to come to life. But, finally, at long last I have something to show you! Albeit, they are naked, but, atleast you finally get a peek at these cute little characters right after they have come to life here in my studio. The 32" santa is a lot bigger than I had initially expected him to be, he is actually 40" tall. And, you will find the 2nd 18" santa now ready to be dressed as well.

Soon, I'll have some clothes for them and some "props" too I hope. But, do not be too upset if that takes a little time, as I will be having foot surgery tomorrow and that might slow me down a bit. But, I really wanted to have something completed by that time so you would have something charming to occupy your minds until the next stage can be completed.

Again, sorry the lighting is so bad with these pics. I tried to take them outside, but was only fortunate to capture the last bit of sunlight for the day so they came out a little darker than I had hoped. I do hope you like them!

40" santa:
40" santa1
40" santa2
40" santa3
40" santa4
40" santa5
40" santa7
40" santa6

And, now, the 2nd jolly 18" santa:
18" jolly santa1
18" jolly santa4
18" jolly santa3
18" jolly santa2
18" jolly santa5

Well, I do hope you like them. Again, I'm sorry it took longer than I had expected to get some pics up for you all, but let me tell you, making Santas is a serious business! :-)