Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Coloring your Dolls

Recently, Prima Marketing and I came out with some alcohol marker palettes to be used with my doll stamps. Now, I don't claim to be one of those amazing marker artists out there, let's just get that clear.
As you all know, I love my text paper...any kind of text paper...scrapbook paper, newspaper, old maps and documents. You name it, that's what I like to stamp my dolls on. But I have to admit, I like a little shading. It just adds that touch of depth, that feeling that hey, maybe I am a real artist! The only markers that gave me the look I wanted were alcohol markers and we know how expensive and well for me, how overwhelming it is to go through all the colors to find the exact one I needed.
These markers come in many palettes for skin and hair tones as well as some basic colors that I like to use for shading the clothes. Remember the reason I have always used text papers since I started all my doll stuff back in 2007...I didn't have to be perfect at shading the skin. I didn't have to be a real artist! I could be the totally imperfect artist that I am and get away with it. So here are my tips for using theses new markers my way.
These markers go perfectly with the Buff Paper Pad by Prima. All different skin tones come in one handy A4 pad.
Be warned though, not to depend on the numbers on the markers to figure out the different shades. We do not number them. They come that way from the manufacturer. There is a reason, a very technical one but I am not here to bore you with that. Just always test your colors first.

My first tip of the day...I cut off the top of the package so the markers slip right out. I keep them in their packages so I know the light skin tones from the medium ones, etc. I also write the numbers on the back just in case I get mixed up. I keep all the sets in a small handled shopping bag so I can see all the colors at a glance. It slips right under my desk.

I stamp my image with Archival ink and give it a few seconds to dry. I am using the Light Skin palette for this on the light tone paper from the Buff paper pad. I picked a side, the left and shaded it with the medium tone marker, #83. You could use the darker tone, #84 for this step if you want it a little bit more pronounced. There is no right or wrong way and I encourage you to play with the colors to see what you like.

I used the lightest tone marker, #82 to blend the darker shade into the paper. Keep this particular color handy...I use it a lot. I don't do any of the fancy schmancy flicking, I just simply blend the colors. Bamm! Skin is done! Easy peasy.

Let's make Candie a blond today. Using a more traditional approach, I brush the lightest tone of the blond palette, #17 in the center of all the hair sections. I then brush the medium tone in the empty spaces. I like to stagger my edges for texture. I blend the colors with my lightest pen from the light skin palette # 82. There is also a blender pen but for some reason I just prefer that light pen to blend with. I place just a tiny bit of the darkest tone #19 at the roots, top of bangs and the side curls and blend again. Done!

Hair and skin complete, but oh no! I forgot....

Cheeks! We have just the set for that... Dolled Up! I used the lightest shade #1 and blended it with my # 82 from the light skin set. I think she's now ready to get dressed! This set is a perfect example of the numbering system not being in the order we think it should be in so be careful.

There are sets in different colors too, greens, teals, purples, reds. I love to shade the folds in the dresses to give them some dimension. I stamped the dress on a new paper from the Garden Fable collection and I'm going to use the Dolled Up set because of their pink tones. On the left side of the dress, I used the darkest tone, #3 and on the right side of the dress, I used #6, the medium tone just to show you the difference. I blended again with The #82.

All dressed and ready to go! I did her shoes with the Brunette set. You can see I am not the proficient alcohol marker artist but these pens give me just the right shades for what I want to achieve with my dolls. Notice how I shaded just the left side of her skin. Simple, fast and oh so cute!

Sorry, my lighting is terrible today but I wanted to show how nicely using the dark tones work with the Buff paper pad. I used only one color and simply blended it into the paper.

Monday, February 23, 2015

The Red Carpet




One of my favorite nights of the year! Ok, I admit it I love to watch the Oscars. Who doesn't? I love to see all the beautiful gowns, imagining all the work that must go into one single dress. Seed beads, crystals, pearls, and lace means a lot of hand stitching. I definitely had favorites this year and each one was so different from each other. I think my favorites were the 2 with the turquoise colored necklaces...Kate Blanchett and Lara Spencer's dresses were of the simplest of lines, fitting beautifully and topped off with bold bib necklaces. I liked Gwyneth's dress a lot even though it was criticized greatly in the press. Perhaps it's because I work with a company that produces flower embellishments and I knew I just had to recreate that dress on a paper doll. Who couldn't appreciate THE dress of the night? Jennifer Lopez was exquisite in that dress no matter what the opinion  was of the neckline.
I couldn't wait to use my new Marisol stamp from Prima Marketing to show you the versatility of this stamp. For all of you that like to alter the clothes, this ones for you! I used my watercolor pencils for Jennifer's dress in a nude, peachy shade and piled on tiny sequins for the beads. I used scrapbook paper for the others, hoping to capture the colors the best I could. Kate's necklace was fun to make, just layering different shades and sizes of rhinestones. I even altered the hair since ponytails seemed to be the style of the night.
This stamp was made for all the DYI stampers out there. I hope you have as much fun with her as I do.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Here's the Rest!

Rita - 1940's

Audrey - 1950's

Jill - 1960's

Here a few samples from CHA, the craft industry's largest trade show that was held in January. These are the rest of the stamps that I designed in my Through the Decades collection. On my last post I talked about how I make up stories when I draw. I've drawn this way for as long as I can remember. My illustrations always had a story to accompany them.
Meet Rita. The late 40's was a milestone for fashion....Christian Dior became huge with his New Look., cinched in waistbands with full luxurious skirts. This particular dress is an actual Dior dress from that period. Now mind you, Rita could not afford to dress like this, so she made her own version. I'm thinking after the war she came to Hollywood to become a star. Hmmmm, I wonder if she made it?
Of course with the 3/4 length tight sweater and black and white, I was thinking the Audrey but as I got more into it, I decided she was more of a rich socialite. Perhaps she married rich and loved to shop and host great parties. Of course belonged to the best country club! With those sunglasses, I'm thinking she probably drove a fancy little convertible!
The 1960's brought one of the most drastic changes to fashion ever. London was the capitol of mod fashion and this is where Jill lived. She of course was a model and hung out with rock stars. She may have even dated a few!
So there you have it. The rest of the girls. Hope you enjoyed their stories!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Meet the New Girls!



My newest collection is getting ready to ship! I have always been interested in the history of fashion and knew that this fascination would become a part of my little stamp world! This collection spans the 1920's through the 1960's, when fashion had it's most drastic changes in history.
Recently in a class, I was asked if my girls have stories behind them and the answer is, of course they do! As I  sit and draw I can't help but come up with stories. This is Ruby. Yes, I watch Downton Abbey and can't help but be infatuated with the clothes! Ruby is from this period and as I was drawing her I couldn't help but think about what life must have been like in the 20's. We all watched The Great Gatsby last year and this little lady seemed to be flirtatious and maybe a bit of a scandalous flapper. I'm thinking she may have even gone to Paris and hung out with all the artists and writers. Perhaps she may have even done some modeling for the well known artists of the day. I do know she would not have been happy at home making jam or sitting in the parlor doing stitchery all afternoon. She wasn't a bad girl (well maybe a bit naughty) she just wanted to experience the excitement of a new era.

Jeanne is a bit more mellow. This was actually my most difficult girl to draw. It was the 1930's, an era of depression and the beginning of war. To me, she looks like she is going to the train station. She rummaged through her wardrobe to find something suitable to see her love off to war. She's a bit sad as she heads back home to start a new life of working in a factory as she helps with the war effort. Although I drew this stamp at least 6 or 7 times before I liked it, it became my favorite.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Orny Class!

Come join me for this fun ornament class at Treasured Memories in Oak Park, CA on Nov. 8th at 10 am! I will have several paper styles and paint colors for you to choose from. Once you make these, I promise you will want to make more!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Happy Mother's Day!

Hey...where did April go? I completely forgot to do a tag for April and I had the cutest idea in my head! It was a crazy, busy month for me with a bad cold thrown into the mix. I was happily making some samples for package photos for some awesome new products coming out in July. we also had some last minute ideas for a release in October that I had to squeeze in. I just received the prototypes and I promise much fun will be had by all who purchase these little gems!
So all of a sudden it's May. Didn't we just pack Christmas away? Here is my May tag, made simply with the new Prima Bloom Sprays and lots of washi tape. Had so much fun with this. Did you all make your Mother's Day cards or buy them?

Monday, March 24, 2014

Introducing Shay

This is Shay. She's one of my favorites. My inspiration for her? She's a city girl. You might find her in New York, maybe San Francisco. Her hat, heels and clutch say it all...she's into clothes and she knows how to wear them! This stamp goes perfect with the Boutique stamp pack consisting of hats and handbags. Accessories always makes playing dress up a lot more fun, don't you think?