Chronicling my sculpting journey.
Well, that wasn't as difficult as I thought it was going to be. Thankfully the uniqueness of my subject didn't toss any major obstacles during the sculpting process. Really the only thing that I was somewhat stumped over was the blue coloring on the front of her torso. It's PearlEx powder and I always seem to forget how and when to apply it successfully when I want it to remain shiny. I don't like mixing it with other mediums because in my opinion it takes away the brilliant sheen of the powder and I don't want to dull it down in any way. But I figured out that the best way to apply the PearlEx powder and not have it lose any of its shine is to apply it to the Clay while it's still unbaked and soft. So THAT was a plus!
Regarding wigging, I learned that knowing and planning your Artdolls' hairstyle is very important as a poorly planned hairstyle before you start wigging leads to a less than desirable end-result. I'll eventually create a tutorial on this to better illustrate what I'm referring to.
Blushing unbaked clay, has an amazing effect. It gives the clay a look of faded color edges instead of seeing the color edges of where the sculpture was painted. It's almost like when women apply black eyeshadow. This is very useful when blushing the large areas of the body like the limbs. I was so relieved to have really realized the benefits of this as it adds realism.
Until next time.
I recently found out how to, and not to mix clays.
Q. Why mix clays together ?
A. For the same reason an artist mixes paints, to get a one-of-a-kind color. Sculptors who use polymer clay mix different clay colors to get a very unique color for their sculpture's skin tone.
I notice I'm doing it more and more now and I really like, if not, Love the results. You can come up with some very beautiful, unique shades of clay by mixing the correct colors together thereby adding to the one-of-a-kind aspect of your sculpture. Now onto the reason I'm posting.
I recently was working on a mermaid sculpture and I made her tail out of FIMO clay and her torso was Super Sculpey clay. Once she was ready to go into the oven, I cured her at the manufacturer's specifications, trouble is, I'm using two different manufacturer's clays on one piece. So I chose the safest and just to help you all out, this is what I did in case you all still want to mix your clay manufacturers;
Recommended Baking Instructions
FIMO: Bake at 230◦ F (110◦ C) for 30mins.
Super Sculpey: Bake at 275◦ F (130◦ C) for 15mins per 1/4 inch of thickness.
What I did was follow Sculpey's instructions and when it was done curing and cooling down completely I noticed the Green FIMO clay had darkened substantially. Luckily the tail was going to be covered with adornments but still, lesson learned.
Ideal Clay Mixing Scenario
If you're going to mix clays the easiest and worry-free way to do it is to mix clays from the same manufacturer so they have the same curing instructions, that way you won't have to worry about under or over backing one or the other.
If you still want to mix different clay manufacturers I would recommend curing in increments. Curing for 20-30 mins at a time and seeing how the clays are holding up in case your sculpture won't have the clay covered with adornments and it will be exposed.
Recently, about several months ago, I was doing research on The International Art Doll Registry (IADR) as I had seen that acronym used in Art Doll eBay listing and was curious to what it was, what it meant, so I went to their site and read up on it and what it meant to be a member. I then got to the Registry page where all the registered OOAK (One Of A Kind) dolls are listed and as I was going through the list I recognized A LOT of the artists name and dolls on there ... needless to say I got intimidated right away. I thought to myself "I haven't earned this yet !! To be amongst these artists that I've idolized, admired and looked up to !!" So I put the idea of becoming a member on the back burner for months.
I then asked for my fellow sculptor's opinions on the subject and many of them were already IADR members and got some very insightful views which all made sense as to becoming a member;
For more on the benefits of membership; Read More Here
You might have noticed that I'm not posting as many WIPs of the three projects that are on my Current Creations page, that's because I took some time to participate in a group sculpting challenge at the Forum that I'm a member and Moderator at, The Dollmaker's Studio.
The group challenge is called The Faces of June and you choose your challenge; you sculpt either 10, 20 or 30 sculptures faces in the month of June as an exercise to improve your skill and define your style, all while learning, asking questions, posting WIPs, getting critiques when they're asked for and building camaraderie with fellow artists ! My faces really needed the bump in skill so I decided to take the time and participate in this challenge because I know my sculptures can only benefit from it. It's incredibly exciting to see everyone's skill improve right before your eyes - oh ! and at the completion of the challenge, all who participated get a sculpting goodie bag.
I'll share some of the faces I've done so far ....
If you've been looking for a Forum to learn, have fun in, find support and encouragement, feel free to stop by and join the Forum as a free member. It's an incredibly friendly place and it's the first Forum where I felt completely accepted and included. Join my clicking on their banner above.
I'll hopefully see you there
I wanted to write this post to aide those that might be in the same situation I was just in. In the past I had only known that to mail a package to someone to had to go into the post office to buy the shipping label and send off your package. That's the only way I had ever done it.
Now, I know how to ship a package when one of my Art Dolls are sold because the website that one sells on, or at least the ones I sell on (Etsy, eBay), provide guides on exactly what to do and you can do it all from one central place, that marketplace's website. From their website you just follow the steps to print a shipping label, enter in your package dimensions, pay for postage and print your shipping label and you're done. I found myself asking "But what about when I have something that I want to ship to someone and it's not something I sold on these sites ??"
It came to me as I was browsing the internet this AM. The USPS website ! You simply go on their site, register / create an account, create a shipping label, pay for postage, print your label and attach it to your package and off it goes, just like the sites mentioned above, only this time, you go straight to the shipping service provider's website, in this case, the USPS, in the US. I'll walk you through it -
2. Once you have your supplies and your item is packaged and sealed, go back to USPS.com to "Print A Label with Postage" Once at the website, hoover your mouse over "Ship A Package" then select "Print A Label with Postage" -
If you're not registered (have an account with USPS.com) or are not signed in to your account, you'll see this page -
Sign in or follow the steps to create an account. Then go through the process of filling out this following form / sections -
Once you've done all that, you'll finish up the process (be sure to select the free option of getting USPS Tracking on your package so you can follow it's progress) and it will give you the option of printing out your shipping label and you just securely attach it to your package and send it on it's way (YaY) !
You'll also get your tracking number in a separate email, if you selected that option, to know where your package is in the mailing process once you mail it out.
Hope that helped !
I figured it out ! I had such a difficult time painting with and trying to figure out how to use Genesis heat-set paints. I knew the way I was using them was not right as I was getting results that looked nothing like the end-result I'd see with other artists.
I searched and searched then took some time off from looking, about a month, and just recently I was painting a face and I remembered the Genesis sampler pack I bought came with a thinning medium ...then I remembered what it's used for - and it hit me; "THAT'S what they use to get an amazing painted face !" I was as happy as a kid in a toy store ! What you do is take some of the thinning medium and it literally thins or softens the color so it goes on the clay easily, smoothly and blends perfectly.
This process looses a lot in the written word which is why I will make a video How-To so you can SEE what I'm talking about. I'm a visual learner and when I see something it really clicks and registers in my brain. Video soon to come on the FDMj Creations YouTube Channel.
See you there.