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Friday, December 28, 2012

Kathryn Walmsley - Expression in sculpture!


Expression - 
Speaks Volumes!

Kathryn is an internationally known artist, designer, teacher, member and past president of the National Institute of American Doll Artists (NIADA).  She creates spectacular works of art which have been shown in museums, art exhibits and art shows around the US and abroad.

The eyes, the eyebrows the gentle smiles and the bubbly cheeks these are all smiles now all tell a story but could easily be turned into scowls, sad faces or mean expressions. 
Kathryn has the gift to do and to teach.

The Big Bang

HER WORK SPEAKS FOR ITSELF!  Never pass up an opportunity to take classes from her.That's what I say.    She is terribly nice, easy to relate to and a terrific teacher.    What makes her work so Spectacular Spectacular?  Check out the facial expressions.  Immediately you know what mood, mischief or troublesome thoughts must be going through their heads.  Kathryn not only creates art she expresses feelings within her characters.  It is a true talent to construct such figures while generating  such apparent emotion.  Kathryn excels in this form of art work as you can plainly see.  Just look at the smiles and dimples, grins and mischievous in each character, you can tell what each creature is thinking. 

Humpty Dumpty......Afraid to fall?  Knows his doom is upon him?  You can see it in his eyes, mouth and brows?  It is all about his face yes?  Expression is the final skill needed to fully convey your what your character is thinking

The most extraordinary thing is that Kathryn can also teach you how to achieve expression in your own characters.  Her work in paper clay at AFICC features just such a class. The Big Bang focuses on sculpturing techniques in illustrating expression.  When I ask Kathryn to submit a class I never dreamed that this one would come along. She never stop surprising me.  I have taken 3 classes from Kathryn and the only reason I am missing this class is because I am running the convention.  Darn my luck.  She just has so much to offer.  There is little to make you  wonder she has not only been inducted into NIADA and was a president of this very impressive institution.  

Let me tell you, there is so much more to the human face than eyes, ears, nose and mouth.  Check out the eyebrows, dimples, and smirk verses smile on all her work here.  What does a purse of the lips do or a wrinkling of the forehead do for your expression?  It is fun to play with these adaptations and Kathryn does it so well. She strives to make sure her students will be able to master the art of expression in class. At the same time she has a allowance she gives her students to express themselves at the same time.

Whether you take a class this spring at AFICC or in the future watch for Kathryn’s classes and submerge yourself in her world for a day or too you will not regret it.

Kathryn has a very fun loving whimsy to her work and it is all because she has so many fuzzy creatures about her.  Well that is my belief anyway

Whenever I ask Kathryn about her life she always reminds me that she lives in a log house deep in the woods of south east Indiana along with her musician/ woodworker husband, Stephen, Sasha Cat, Scooter Basset Hound, an alpaca named James Brown and a bunch of goats.  She never leaves the animals out or the fact she has a husband that is very talented also.  She is immersed in a whimsical, loving environment and it shows in her and her artwork. 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Ute Vasina

A Fun Friendly Family of Trolls and Folly

Ute lived in Germany until the age of 12. She and her mother moved to the United States, she left her friends and language behind.  Ute had to learn to speak English and adapt to a new world.    As she thinks back at one of her fondness memories in Germany she things of Fastnacht.   In Germany they did not have Halloween but they did have Fastnacht, which happens in February. Instead of candy people gave out food.   Except for Munich's Oktoberfest, it is the one time of year when many normally staid Germans, Austrians and Swiss loosen up and go a little crazy. Fastnacht or Karneval is a "movable feast" The last Fastnacht she remembers she went as a cowgirl. Choosing to be a cowgirl is kind of ironic; because she ended up moving to America; the heart of Cowgirl country. 

Mushroom Keeper

As a youngster Ute loved playing in the woods and pick up twigs, pine cones and other things to make pretend animals. It is not surprising that her imagination goes to the woodlands when creating.  Her signature work has been in the land of Trolls.  If anyone can make trolls endearing Ute can.  She has a way of taking these broad features that are attributed in trolls and hobgoblins and turn them into a household of lovable creatures. As you can see for yourself.  Sweet little Becka and her pet duckling makes you go ahhhh. Who can resist the "Mushroom Keeper"  that takes her job of keeping mushrooms safe from harm. 

Steampunk Troll

Take a walk on the wild side with Ute!  Let loose of the traditional and pretty.  Check out this her newest class “Stanley”(Click Here) He is the old geezer of the family come to life.  All Cloth with Inset eyes, create hands with opposable thumbs and much more. Stanley is guaranteed to put a “BIG” smile on your face.  Not only will you come away with new tricks and techniques, but you’ll have a whole new outlook about cloth.


Friday, November 9, 2012

Debbie Jackson & Dawn Schiller

Two Polymer clay artist:
 Debbie Jackson & Dawn Schiller 
It is like comparing Apples and Oranges! 
Two Fruits but a different delightful taste!

Apples - Debbie Jackson
Oranges - Dawn Schiller

     I would like to introduce you to two very unique polymer clay artists.  Both are educators, teaching their style and techniques.  Both have been in numerous s galleries, magazines, and the focal point of many blogs.  Both are authors of their very own polymer clay “How to books”.  In 2013 both artists will be teaching at Artistic Figures in Cloth and Clay.  That is where the similarities end.  They both march to a totally different drummer. Check out their close up profiles and chime in if you have had either of these teachers, read their books or had a chance to purchase their art.

 Debbie Jackson
Debbie Jackson's book “Polymer Clay Jewelry” was published in 2004.  Debbie has appeared on the 'Carol Duvall Show' on HGTV, where she demonstrated a project from her book. Her business and web site Debbie’s Adornments” show cases a sample of her work.  Debbie has a love for polymer clay and art dolls which has led her to create some very interesting jewelry.  Combining these two interests and her love of African and Asian patterns, textiles, rich colors and texture she has developed Jewelry that is true “Art doll makers accessory” 

Her attention to the smallest detail is apparent.  Just take a look at these brooches made with her caning technique”.  Debbie has sold her jewelry including her art doll pendants and earrings at AFICC.  Artist, students and visitors have drooled over her work. She has a strong recondition and popularity in the polymer clay society.   This year we are so fortunate to have her teaching and bringing a new dimension to our art doll community

   She has incorporated gorgeous cane work into this pendent. She will be teaching this type of Reversible Art Doll Pendent, which focuses on Cain.  If you want to learn how to manipulate polymer clay even further check out the earring class featuring design, color and texture.  (Check out her classes click here) Step out of your box and look at art dolls in a whole new way.  Adorn yourself with wearable dolls and learn techniques that can be used in full size dolls too. 

Debbie has not only taught but is very involved in her community art centers, and national polymer arts.  She is active in museum education and has served as president of the Columbus Polymer Clay Guild for several years. She is also a member of the Ohio Designer Craftsmen and participates in their annual Winterfair Art Show. Debbie is well known on a national level;  for several years she has served on the advisory board for the Polymer CAFE' magazine.

Dawn Schiller
Dawn Schiller has just released her book “Fae Maker”.  This is a wonderful step by step book which features her award winning doll making techniques. 

 Dawn is an artist with a twist, and then twist her again. Or is that her little troll all that is twisted up?  Regardless she has a look, and style all her own. 

 Her web site name is Odd Fae, which should explain a lot.  Her work embraces twisted and bent trolls, sea and pod-dwelling hermits, odd fae, and mythological beasts. She ever so gently balances on a tight rope of odd and mystical.   Dawn shows and sells her work every year at Comic Con in San Diego. Her work is collected internationally and with out much more than a glace at her work you can see why.  She has a style that says "Stop look and wonder about how I was made."

 She is teaching her sweet little troll  from her book "Fae Maker",  Fetch at the up and convention in Columbus. (Check out her classes click here)  It is a two day class which goes over every step in detail.   Get some hands on experience with her at AFICC is the place to be on April 25-28, 2013.  She is teaching Eggcentric and Fetch where you will get the full Odd Fae package.

Dawn has been featured on blogs and magazines but most recently she presented a step by step editorial along with a Artist profile in Polymer CafĂ© magazine June 2012 issue. There are twenty seven pictures of sculptures alone.  The How to editorial has 63 step by step pictures accompanied by instructions.  She is a tremendously talented artist and devoted teacher. . You must pick up a copy if you can as I have never seen such detail pictures on “How to” create a odefae "Clancy". 

I think you understand now why I say Apples to Oranges.  Yes they both artist are extremely talented, both are educators and author.  Artistic Figures in Cloth and Clay could not be more delighted to give our students the opportunity to learn from these creative artist at the convention in 2013.  

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Christine Lenz

Looking for Funky Fun Folk Art 
WeeMee Whimsies - Artist- Christine Lenz

Felling Sluggish 
   I first ran into Christine Lenz on her Etsy site (click here)    I was in search for months to find a teacher that had one foot in the primitive doll art world with a voice of their own.
 I wanted primitive with a twist, someone with talent and a new edge.  After weeks of searching I almost gave up.  So you can imagine my glee when I found her during one of my Google searches. Typing in primitive, Folk Art, whimsical and a bunch of pictures popped up with the word “images”. 
With a click I started to review the pictures. Then  I sat straight up in my chair!  Could this be what I was looking for?  Was it primitive?  I think not.  Was it Folk art?  Yes, and more, it was funky, fun folk art, I was in love with it.  

Ballet Recital
Christine had a style and look all her own.  I hoped to see more dolls.   I went to her Etsy sight and immediately admired her work.  Not only did she make dolls but she sold collages, paintings, ornaments and of course dolls.   But would she teach, could she teach?  The rest is history! 

 It was nice to see work so light hearted and fun.  As I read on I realized that Christine did a lot of searching for used materials.  Although she is not asking her students to go to thrift stores to by their cotton sheets she certainly is not apposed to them using re purposed materials as she does. 

Collage - Sing

She declares her art work as folk art dolls.  I call them amazingly addictive. Every time I go to her site she has some little play on words, like “Feeling Sluggish” painting,  a comical art doll, a delightful ornament or collage doll.  The name “WeeMee Whimsies fits her like a glove. 

Wheeled Bird

Christine sells her wonder prints 8” x 10” on her site for as little as $11.99.  When you see them you will feel the fun and love she puts into her work.  Her petite characters are charming. I hope she brings them to Artistic Figures in Cloth & Clay so we can see all her work up close.  I just know everyone that is unable to see her work on line should get the opportunity of experiencing her sense of style and humor in person.

Wise & Wacky Owl

Take note that she only uses the rich Golden Fluid Acrylic paints.  Christine believes that the colors are richer and more vibrant than the stock block liquid acrylic paints.  She is indeed correct,  acrylics tones are much more intense.  She is teaching with these exact types of acrylics at AFICC. (See her classes click here)  This will give her students an opportunity to step-up their painting and face painting skills a notch.  Improving your supplies and ability to work with them is just as important as improving your skill level.  Christine hopes to share both her talent and passion of painting with all her students.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Michel Lynch

Michele Lynch A Diamond in the Rough
Artistic Figures In Cloth has a new look this coming year.  We have always celebrated the blending of clays into workshops at the convention but this time we are saying it loud and clear. 
Feature: Michele Lynch

I search and search for new talent.  It's important to keep our classes on the cutting edge, stay up with the newest techniques and styles. I just glow when I can introduce a new teacher at AFICC.  This time I think I  have found several gems. The first one I want to introduce you to on the blog is Michele Lynch.  You might even call Michele Lynch a diamond in the rough!  In her own words, her art work has risen from rough frustrating days at her job. Michele’s Goth/Steampunk sculptures started after taking a full time job with what she so fondly now likes to call “The Soul Sucker Corporation”.  I think a lot of us have been there and can totally relate to the feeling of having the very life sucked out of you day after day.  Well Michele need to relieve some of that stress. She needed a place to put her negative energy. So she started creating.   This was the beginning of her transformation, from depleted into artist.  She no longer works for that corporation,  thank goodness.  Lucky for us she still makes her wonderful art dolls and was now free to come to AFICC and share her interesting techniques and artist style. 

This and the picture above will can be
seen at Swoon Gallery 9/14/12

I am for ever looking for artist with an edge of their own.  As I was browsing through the winter issue of Art Doll Quarterly.  There these sweet goth steampunky dolls were.  There was a profile on her with lots of pictures of her dolls.  I knew immediately I had to find her.  It didn't take long and we began emailing back and forth.  finally I called her.  I instantly took  a shine to her bubbly personality.  You would have never known that she had been stressed out in her entire life.   I was very  thrilled when she submitted her proposal. 
She most recently has had a doll in Summerset Studios September 2012 issue.  Coming up this September 14, 2012. she is just at an online gallery showing,  You can visit this show at Swoon Gallery.    Don’t miss it!  These pictures are only a few of the many pieces of art work that she has in the show.

Learn more about Michele Click here

"My Little Darling" 1 Day workshop

Michele’s work is currently being shown at POP Gallery in New Mexico, and the Auguste Clown Gallery in Australia.  We are so happy to be able to bring the Art Doll world her unique prospective and talents.  I am sure she will have lots to teach and dolls to sell at AFICC 2013.
I am only putting up one of the many samples she sent me of her 1 Day class "My Little Darling"   You simply must go to her workshop pages and see all the fun techniques and quirky little dolls ready to inspire her students as she is teaching.   Different samples of art dolls and lots of great ideas to incorporate into your very own Little Darling.  If Michele Lynch is your cup of tea then you do not want to miss this opportunity.

Click here for Michele's workshops at AFICC

Monday, June 18, 2012

Sneak Preview

Artistic Figures in Cloth & Clay
 April 25-28, 2013

Sneak Preview
Over 22 class 13 Instructors
Evening Events * Shopping * Exhibits
and much more.....OHHHHHHH
so much more!

Only 15 of the 22 workshops coming next Spring

Set the date aside and start saving your pocket money!

Artistic Figures in Cloth & Clay Line-Up

Artistic Figures in Cloth & Clay
April 25-28, 2013

Time gets away from me the next thing I know it is time to plan Artistic Figures in Cloth and Clay 2013.  Wow is that even possible.  Well don't you fret I am on it and all the teachers have been contracted.  It is simply an awesome line up.  Every year I can hardly believe I can come close to getting the level of inspiring workshops and entertainment!  I think the instructors have out done themselves this year.  I will be featuring 2 teachers a month starting in August.  Here is this years line up:

Lillian Alberti, Jean Bernard, Debbie Jackson,
Lucy Landry, Christine Lenz, Michele Lynch,
Stephen Rausch, Rosie Rojas, Dawn Schiller,
Barbara Schoenoff, Christine Schively-Benjamin,
Ute Vasina and Kathryn Walmsley

I of course have all the events and entertainment planned. I have some special guest coming in to speak and perform.  I can not wait till the big reveal......In the mean time I am feverishly working on the web site and will be reporting again soon.