Handy skill to have (pun totally intended)

My friend Claire teaches art classes and workshops, including one on doll-making.

She learned this skill so she could make 3-D models of the characters she wrote about and drew in her first published book, Little Wing.

Some of her students wanted to try their hand at making dolls too, so the workshops were born.

I recently spent a day photographing Claire and her students. When I arrived they were making hands, which I know from my own doll-making attempts are VERY fiddly.

And very rewarding when you get it right.

Posted to the Ragtag Daily Prompt | Skill

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23 thoughts on “Handy skill to have (pun totally intended)

  1. Okay, feeling a bit better about my own doll fetish…I mean obsession.

    I’m a little embarrassed to admit to having a collection. But knowing other people still are involved as adults, makes me feel more normal!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hehe. My mother in law collected Barbie dolls from when she was in her sixties until her death. She had to have special cabinets built and eventually they took up a whole room in her rather large house. I was amazed to learn just how many other people shared her interest 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    • They are fun!!
      The dolls are made from polymer clay; Claire uses Super Sculpey because it comes in big blocks and is “flesh-coloured”. It can also be painted with acrylic paint. She taught us to use a ball of aluminium foil as the basis of the head. You wrap that in wire so it will attach to the body, and then cover it in a layer of Sculpey. The features are shaped onto that. The advantages of using the foil are that you use a lot less clay, so it’s a much cheaper solution than a solid clay head. It’s also much lighter and bakes more evenly. The body is a wire armature with the hands and feet wrapped around wire too. We padded the bodies with thick wadding — the stuff you fill cushions with — and held that in place with thin strips of fabric. The actual construction depends a bit on how you want the finished doll to look. You only need to form the clay for the bits that will show — head, neck, hands. Feet can be clay (bare feet or shoes), or made out of fabric like soft toys. We used all sorts of stuff to finish them. One of mine has “hair” made from a mix of fibres knotted onto a little cap and the glued on the head. My other one has polymer clay “hair” made of little bits shaped with a very fine tooth comb and layer on in pieces before I baked the head.

      Like

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