Tag Archives: progress

Stages of a doll

I always post my daily progress on my Facebook art page but trying to remember to update my wordpress is another story. So I am a bit late on this dolls progress because she is already completed however thought it would be interesting to do a quick post on the stages of my doll from beginning to completion.

Dolls are pretty time consuming (sketching/planning ideas, armatures, making the eyes, sculpting, cooking, layers of gesso, painting, varnishing, lots of waiting for things to dry, attaching the limbs for the jointed dolls, making the costumes, gluing in the hair, and all the other little details that go into it). It really works my nerves when someone asks if I can “lower the price” or “”omg why does she charge so much”. If only people could understand this, much like painting or any other art form, is a time consuming process, and also these are one of a kind pieces of art. If you want cheap, you can always go for mass produced.

This is my newest piece.  I have lately been taking a small break from my jointed dolls to make  a few standing sculpts. (but don’t worry, jointed ones coming  back soon!) She is my representation of the grim reaper.



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Filed under ooak art doll, polymer clay, sculpture

Painting Process

I finally finished my new sculpt and I think I am pretty happy with the results (for the most part.)  In the end, I was torn between whether or not to add hair and I battled over this decision for many hours. Sometimes I hate (more like despise) this indecisive curse that was put upon me. For those of you familiar with astrology, I am a gemini so as you know their are two sides to this sign and mine  never seem to agree, making things quite difficult. Anyway, in the end I kind of felt a little sad that I had not left her in her original state but  I had to accept that what was done was done.

However this post is not for me to ramble on about my regrets. Although I don’t have many, I decided  to share a few of my progress pictures. I have been asked several times to do tutorials however I am such a horrible teacher so I figure I would just start posting the various stages of my works. So far I only have a few shots of my painting process so for now I will share that and hope that someone can benefit from it.

So anyway here is my sculpt. She is sculpted using Cernit clay (which in my opinion, is the strongest clay and the best clay for making details.) Unfortunately, I was sent an older batch of clay and as many of you have probably experienced, once the oils separate, it becomes quite a pain to knead to a workable state. Many people suggest using a clay softener however I have not had the best of luck with it. Don’t get me wrong, it does get the clay soft and workable rather quick however I find it just makes my clay sticky and too soft for my taste. Perhaps I am using too much??

After my clay is cooked, and cooled, I prep my sculpt with a layer of clear gesso.(I used Liquitex Clear Gesso). This is important because the gesso acts as “teeth” and help the paint to stick nicely to the clay. Make sure you let it dry completely before you start to paint. The bottle says 24 hours however I never wait that long since I only apply one thin coat. Once dry, I apply a thin layer of white acrylic paint (or whatever color you are using) Always let your coats dry before adding another or your paint job will end up very sloppy, thick and  uneven. For an impatient person like me, it is very hard to sit and wait however acrylic paints do not take that long to dry.

Using a thin pointed paint brush (I used 10/0) , I fill in the deep cracks with black, to help give it some dimension. Using a dry flat brush, I LIGHTLY paint over and spread the black so that it does not have hard edges (unless you desire them that way)

I add blue to the desired areas, and once dry I use powdered pigments in gold. I do not buy the loose mica powders sold at hobby lobby although I am sure they work just as good. (I cannot comment on them since I have never used them). Instead, I found that loose makeup works  well (at least the golds that I use do).  To help it stick it, I mix the powdered eyeshadow with Varathane gloss (which is an AMAZING product) and apply it randomly over the blue.

Once again,I add, black to the deep cracks of my sculpt.

After my sculpt is completely painted I add several layers of Varathane gloss (water based). Make sure you let the coats dry in between. This takes about 2 hours. I then add my finishing touches such as eyelashes and hair. I am using polyester hair from one of my old wigs however if you want a more natural looking hair you can purchase Tibetan Mohair.

Now I just need to add those jointed arms and she is done! (unless I decide to leave her limbless).

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