Sunday, August 30, 2009

Handmade Portraits:Mimi Kirchner

Oops! I did not mean to leave everyone hanging for a week. I hope you all took the opportunity to check out some of the archives.

Etsy Storque sent me a link to a video interview, "Handmade Portraits", with the very wonderful Mimi Kirchner (who I have featured before.) Follow this link (and embed this video in your blog) for the chance to win one of her unique, adorable pin cushionsI love the opportunity to see into another doll maker's studio. She has an extensive collection of dolls as well as the one's she makes. We share a similar working method of using recycled and vintage materials. Like me, Mimi inherited many of the most interesting fabrics in her stash from her mother.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

One to watch

Relatively new doll artist, Dewfall, in Lithuania, has recently started a new blog. Her work is whimsical, detailed and polished. I like the elongated elegance of her latest doll figure, "Mist Muse". More photos on her flikr page.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Early Christmas Shopping...

If you are travelling to Minnesota in the fall you might be in luck. Over October 16 -18, 2009 in Bemidji, MN will be the First City of Arts: Studios Cruise. This is not a boat ride, but the opportunity to visit the studios and workshops of artists and artisans in the area. Coolest part - the tour is free, leaving your funds to support the artists directly.

Participating will be miniature bear artist, Alice Strand of Alice's Animals. Her adorable little anthropomorphic creatures are also available through her Etsy store.


Steve Stackpole is a sculptor creating kinetic sculptures and automata from various materials. Very often his works include figurative element. The Gallery includes movies of some works in motion. Be sure to visit his links page (under the MISC tab) for a veritable rabbit hole of links to other fascinating sculptors.

More charming animals

Not content with showcasing Victor's work, here is a site linked from his of another animal doll artist. Natasha Fadeeva makes needle felted animals, and knitted stuffed animals of delightful character and charm.

Felt menagerie

OMG these felted animals (that MA found) by artist Victor Dubrovsky are both amazing and adorable. It is amazing how much naturalism can be created with needle felting. The galleries are rather wonderful, since each main photo is a portal to more views of each critter. Oh the patience to do these.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Destiny's Garden

Destiny's Garden is the title of doll artist Elizabeth Dye's beautifully organized website. There are layers of galleries and information to explore. Her work is meticulously detailed and polished, yet full of life and personality. Most of the figures are polymer clay, but she also has some limited edition resin castings.

You can see her work in person at the Doll and Bear Expo in Columbia, SC in October. Knights Doll Shows happen all over the south western US throughout the year.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Deconstructed Barbie

Check out Margaux Lange's very witty and clever Barbie redux jewelry portfolio. She has a blog and awesome Etsy store too.

I found her featured in the book my husband got me for my birthday - "Cool Green Stuff" by Dave Evans.

Canvas Within my Soul Blog Giveaway

I love blog giveaways. Doll friend Fran Parrigan-Meehan is giving away two doll related items to celebrate, and be revealed in, her 200th blog post on next Friday, August 21st. Comment there to be in the running. (Not here, just to be clear). That is one of her latest creations pictured.

Friday, August 14, 2009

2009 Hoffman winners circle

BTW here is the illustrated list of 2009 Hoffman Challenge doll winners. Breathtaking. Here's the link for the other categories. Wow. (Looks familiar - didn't I just feature Arley Berryhill? Why, yes, yes I did)

Bonnie Blog

I usually stick to posting doll/textile art blogs rather than general blogs that have dolls sprinkled through them. But I enjoy looking at fellow Hoffman contestant Bonnie Stewart's textured dolls so much, I want to encourage her to make more of them. Her fun with photoshop is enjoyable to look at also - maybe the genesis of some fabric works? Scroll down to older posts for WIP's and a nice gallery of earlier works.

Junk in the Trunk

A cool modern art gallery in Los Angeles is having a "yard sale" of assorted artworks including many figures. GR2, on Sawtelle, is calling it "Junk in the Trunk". It starts August 15th and continues for a month.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Star Wars Muggs

Check out this auction sponsored by Lucasarts of Star Wars themed artist reduxes of Mighty Muggs to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Auction ends August 14th.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Barbie Redux revisited

Here's the Barbie Redux window at 10 Women, Venice. But there's more!....on the other side of the black curtain are even more hanging dolls, and there are several more dolls (including my 9yo's "Acrobat" on the shelves of Trisha's space in the main room.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Super Nova

Nova Blossoms is the name of Stephanie Novatski's art doll business. She likes beautiful painted faces, hand dying, intricate embellishments and lots of fine detail. Yay, so do I! Here's her great tutorial on using Solvy from Sulky to create wispy light beautiful shapes and gauzes.
I've been resisting tibetan lamb for making my own doll hair, but this kind of gorgeous result really weakens my resolve....

Moxie Girlz

My dd and I visited the big toy store and saw these Moxie Girlz for the first time. They are evidently going to be MGA's replacement for Bratz when the latter leave the shelves forever.
Looking at the rather sweet and pretty faces of these four slim bodied/largish head fashion dolls, it seems to me that the designers over at MGA have taken some of the reservations/criticisms of Bratz by some parents to heart. These new girls have the appearance of being a few years younger than the Bratz core four with much less makeup and smaller lips, although each retain distinctive sassy personalities. They all have a code for a membership to an online community (Webkinz started a bandwagon on to which no doll or toy company will apparently refrain from leaping) and part of the focus seems to be promoting artistic activities - like color in/wipe off room accessories or vinyl clothing. Hmmm.

My 9year old likes the look of them, liking the faces and thinking the hair is beautiful, but she is not keen on the shape of the hands. We'll wait to see if the website is better than the mostly "chat and buy clothes" world that Bratz created. She doesn't care to chat online, and she likes actual games per Webkinz world and the wonderful free site Oyunlar. (Heavy on the virtual paper doll dress up games with manga style visuals.)

New Primitive elegance magazine upcoming

I know there are a lot of doll artists out there working in primitive and folk art style. In case you haven't heard, Stampington the publisher of Art Doll Quarterly and so many other visually gorgeous magazines, is calling for submissions for a new publication, "Prim", the first issue of which will be available April 2010. Deadline for this premier is November 15, but I bet they'd love to see things sooner.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Creative sparks

Polymer clay really is a wonderfully versatile medium. Here's Dayle Doroshow's online gallery to prove the point. I love how she is able to use millefiore canes to recreate the look of fabrics. Then she embellishes with natural and mixed media elements.

Welcome to the Dollhouse published

Cynjon Noah (featured here in the past) has published his luciously illustrated book of art dolls, "Welcome to the Dollhouse", available from Blurb. You can see a fifteen page preview there, but that leaves another 49 pages of fabulous art still to inspire.

A Show of Heads

Two art contests in a row....A Show of Heads. Hurry though, registration of entries ends August 30 for an exhibition in November.

Momiji doll contest.

Here's a Momiji doll making contest! This looks like way cool fun to me. Momiji dolls are message dolls and the distinguished panel of judges are looking for wow factor and skill with textiles. Deadline October 30th. The picture is the gallery where the winning 10 will be exhibited. Visit the contest blog, too. (Thanks Deb, for the heads up)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Free Patterns

Cloth doll maker Connie McBride Johnson has just added a sweet sitting Fairy Faylinn doll pattern to the extensive list of free patterns available for download from her Clothmatters blog. I like the little felt pinafores they are wearing.


Sarah Zambiasi makes more than dolls. She also creates photographs and mixed media 2-D works around the theme of "Tribe". But her dolls are intricately embellished, abstracted figurative sculptures in vivid colors that invite close examination. Scroll down her blog for a lively gallery of her work and her inspirations.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Auction to Benefit Doll Maker

Doll Street Dreamers online doll club has been conducting an ongoing auction of various doll stuff, including collections of uncut patterns and back issues of magazines, to benefit doll maker Arlene Glidden, who is very ill. The current auction, which includes a gorgeously fluffy mohair hand made teddy bear, will end August 3rd.

The doll making community is full of generous and loving people. Please have a look at the auction items, and also consider donating an item for the next round.