Monday, June 14, 2010

The Queen Of Snark: My tribute to the one, the only April Winchell

 This post is quite long overdue.
Ever hear of
No? You're missing out.

Regretsy is an amazing blog that singles out and ridicules the bizarre and sometimes just bad items from, a global handmade marketplace. But it's so much more than that.  It's the internet's best hypnotic time-sucking website. It's a living breathing empire of snarky people who adore the out of the norm art and making fun of people who take things too seriously. It's inspiration to take your own art more seriously. It's a virtual society with it's own language and a goal to do as much good as possible to "reduce the asshole footprint." 

Basically, it's just about the greatest thing ever made and it is run by the one and only April Winchell, aka Helen Killer.

That woman is my hero. She is so unrelentingly funny and confident that she has firmly earned a place in my heart. On March 24th she posted a call for items for a charity auction and so I set to work. Within a week, this doll is what I came up with. However, I fell in love with the outcome so hard that I prayed that April would see the doll and be unable to part with her.

She stands at about 16 inches tall and comes complete with a built in weighted doll stand, sewn into the luxurious black fur cape. As with all of my dolls, all of the fabric used on her is from recycled thrift store clothing. Her head, arms, and accessories were sculpted from white polymer clay and painted. My dolls always come with a story card that is written from their point of view and explains a little bit about themselves.

I sent her an email saying,

"When you posted your call for fuckery for the auction, I immediately began scheming. Within an hour of that post, I was at my desk, painstakingly sculpting your visage. And as I worked on this small tribute to snark, I half wanted you to keep her. So I humbly offer this to you to do with as you please. Either keep this doll for yourself, donate it to the auction or burn it and sue me for defamation of character and gratuitous use of a glue gun.  I would be overjoyed with the first two and if you went with the third, well ya gotta do what ya gotta do"

A week passed and I began to get discouraged. And one day, I opened my email and shrieked to find a response from April.
 She had this to say:

"First let me say how much I ADORE this doll.  I just love it more than I can say.  There is so much detail and thought and insanity going on here and it delights me no end. Everything from the mittens to the skants to the toilet paper . . . it's just fucking magic is what it is.

I will gladly and gratefully accept this, though I'm not sure I want to auction it off.  I'll try to be a sport about it, but I'd really like to keep it."

I cried when I read that.  My dark eyed rendition of the funniest woman alive had her stamp of approval.

I've mailed the Queen out and she arrived safely from her long journey to Cali. I am so elated when a piece goes home to its rightful owner. My only wish now is a shot of April with her new doll. Then I think I can die a happy woman.

She is literally COVERED in Regretsy references. If you're not yet a fan, PLEASE go educate yourself in the wonder that is Regretsy. If you are a snarky person who isn't easily offended, you'll fit in nicely.  Hopefully there's a few of you who know what I am talking about and will giggle when you notice the skants, the red mittens, the "embroidered" toilet paper, the earring necklace, and the all around whimsicle fuckery of it all.  And if you followed me here from Regretsy, thanks so much for taking the time to check out my doll. Hope you stick around for more of my art! Please let me know what you think of her! 


Sunday, June 13, 2010

Four Small Dolls

First off, sorry for my long absence from this blog. I've neglected it again for some time but the up side of this is I have amassed several projects in the meantime that I'll be able to post.

Here we have a set of 4 small dolls I have created for a swap. I often participate in these mini doll trades and if you are a doll maker I would LOVE to engage in such a swap with you. The only rules are that they are between 3 and 6 inches tall and have a loop to hang them from. My goal is to have a massive collection of these one of a kind creatures decorating my home. The Yeti I featured a little while back is one of these dolls created for SpookyPooky, one of my crafty art crushes. 

Here is the most recent set I have created. My goal this round was to build as much of each piece from polymer clay as possible. Enjoy!

My first partner had listed mermaids and Day Of The Dead artwork on her likes so I combined them into this lovely. She is constructed entirely out of polymer clay, with the exception of her jointed dangling arms and tail fin. Her fin is made out of one of my favorite materials (as I love any craft that requires fire) Fantasy Film.  I've also heard it called "Angelina Film." It's a thin plastic film that is heat reactive, changing colors and warping shape and texture. It is perfect for things like wings or fins and is oh so much fun to play with.  

My next partner expressed a love of birds and so this was created. The basic shape was built from polymer clay and then painted a royal blue. I then covered the piece in blue and white feathers. Oddly enough, this gave it the perfect texture, weight and density to feel frighteningly realistic. I feel so sorry for my partner who for a half a second when she opened her mail and reached into the bubble mailer, must have worried that she had gotten a lunatic for a partner who sent her a dead bird.  She later told me that due to his stern expression she had named him "The Blue Bird of Seriousness"

This happy little mushroom is entirely clay and has one of the cutest faces ever. I originally intended to make a psychedelic multicolored  funky friend but after I started sculpting he begged to be painted in natural warm colors. The details I put into him like the  ridges under the cap (that I failed to get a good shot of) came out so well that they demanded I stay in realistic tones.

And this spectacular little fellow is by far my favorite. My partner's list included things such as bat wings, eyeballs, tentacles, "the aesthetic of old retro toasters" and the instructions "Go a little mad, and I will be sure to love it." The answer was so very obvious: The Space Toaster from Hell.  She loved him so much she mentioned she was considering divorcing her husband and running away with this fabulous creature. 

I love this Toaster. Love, love, LOVE it. I love that she loved it. I love that it loved her. It makes me so unrelentingly happy when a creature I have created is so perfectly matched with and cherished by it's recipient.

Hope you enjoyed this latest edition of my dark eyed creations :)

Much Love!