Sunday, 27 December 2009

Next step for owl

I've been ill over christmas so all i can do is mess around on photoshop. I'm starting to get the hang of it. My owl is looking better now, hopefully I stand a chance in this competition (design a plushy). I think I'll call him Otto! I'm not sure what else I can do to make him look a little more professional...

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

OWL work picture

This is my wip owl, designed for a plushie contest. It's the first time I've seriously used photoshop, and I think it's okay. It was hardest getting the fluffy effect, but I quite like it now.

I could use a few tips though. I'd like it to be a bit brighter and funkier, so any help appreciated! Let me know what you think.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Work In progress

Here's a couple of projects I'm working on at the moment. First is a cool big art doll of cernunnos. I like to bae a lot of my art around folklore and mythology, and cernunnos is a Pagan Celtic god. He's the horned god of the underworld but, in modern interpretations of Celtic culture, he's the guardian of the forests, the defender of the animal tuatha (tribes), the source of the deep forest wisdom, and the masculine half of creative energy.

At this stage I have built an armature from a load of old wire, and began to build up the head. by keeping the armature thin at the joints, he can be positioned and posed. I'm now waiting for some hair and eyes in the post, before I continue!

Another project I'm making in another junk-based puppet. He's a character with a steampunk/gothic feel, called 'The Chameberlain'. He's got a light up eye with a removable monacle, and a head that flies off to scare everyone! I'm thinking of putting little wings of the sides of his head too! He's nearly finished, so i'll post pictures when he's done, but here's a current work-in-progess picture:

Okay so he doesn't look too impressive in this shot! But I really like this guy.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Create a plushie

Iv'e been busy for the past few days, but I've had a quick fiddle around with photoshop. I'm trying to design a cool plush charatcer for a competition. This is my design so far:

It's got to be a really simple but exciting and weird design, which can be made from plastic and fabrics. I might give it some tentacles too! Unfortunately photoshop is still a mystery to me so coloring it will be a nightmare!

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Little owl goblin

Here's a quick little magical creature. He's some kind of owl/imp/goblin creature, and he's now part of my christmas decorations too!

My decorations definately look better in real life than here; kind of got a magical forest vibe going on!

This little owl guy's  got yellow glass eyes and real feathers!

Friday, 11 December 2009

The Alchemist gothic/steampunky puppet

This is a one-handed puppet called 'The alchemist'. He's a kind of creepy gothic, steampunky mad scientist, loosely inspired by the creepy characters from 'The City of Lost Children'. He is made from junk, and is operated using one hand. You can make him walk using a bobbing motion, and I'll try to get some videos up of him in action!

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Crow puppet

I've always loved the idea of bringing my art dolls to life by making puppets. I've made a few already with varied success. I've been toying with marionettes, rod puppets and a variety of different stringed puppets. The problem is that it's really a case of the simpler the better.

If you make a beautiful puppet, of a fairy for example, with clothing, hair, wings etc. chances are the movements won't be lifelike and the strings will get tangled. I also like to incorporate recycled items into my puppets as much as possible, which can hinder the freedom of movement depending on what I use. I guess the key is finding a balance between freedom of movement and the beauty of the puppet.

Some of the most beautiful puppets I have seen are simple and elegant. The movement can often say more than the detail and features of the puppet. Check out this site for example:

I especially love the Gandalf puppet from the hobbit. They don't seem to be restrained by proportions or details, using a combination of puppets, masks and real actors for a surreal but amazing performance.

Anyway, that gets me round to my latest puppet, a crow. I've just started to paint the head:

I still havn't figured out the actual  animation technique. I'll hopefully post some more of my finished puppets in the next few days.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

A Christmas Pixie

This little christmas pixie is part of my christmas decorations. He has a little red hat with a bell on, a scruffy jumper and white leather braces, with a pair of tripey tights! He's also got some very curly white hair!

I made this little guy from an old seed pod, which was from some used pot pourri. His eyes are haematite. I was going to give him a little fishing rod, with a snowflake hanging from the end like he was creating snow. But in the end i settled for a festive bit of holly.

He hasn't got a name yet so any suggestion are welcome!

Friday, 4 December 2009

Spot the faery

Okay a quick picture to remind us all of summery times! Spot the rooty faery spirit in this pic!

Tuesday, 1 December 2009


Alexei von Jawlensky is a Russian-born painter, who lived predominately in Germany. He has a strong Russian style, with amazing portraits using strong outlines and colour.  He also uses aspects of mysticism and peasant art.. I much prefer his paintings of female models, to his more famous, abstract stuff. They're so vibrant, intense and powerful, like he somehow manages to paint in colour rather than shapes.

This painting, 'Schokko' is my favourite Jawlensky. It's amazing!