Thursday, April 25, 2013

Bilby Girl : Traveling Art Doll

Fabric_-Animotion 1994 
Further adventures in Australia of the Traveling Art Doll.( please see the previous posts for more information -Australian Inspired Traveling Art Doll and  Art Dolls Only Traveling Art Doll
Today is Anzac Day, so it was a quiet afternoon and  I set to completing Lulu's doll. Here is what she looked like early this morning. As Lulu lives in USA, I wanted to give this doll an Australian touch ,too. 
Lulu's doll as she arrived. 
I had intended to use the"Yalke" design fabric which I used on Martha's doll but once I held it against her body, with the fringed yarn already in place, it just didn't seem to work. This doll has a "spirit" look and I first thought of the Australian classic children's novel, "Playing Beatie Bow"  about the ghost girl who couldn't find her way back to 1873....  No....calico pinafore - a bit boring!  Then I remembered a vintage looking piece of Australiana fabric with a bright pink gum blossom. I have had this for a very long time. In theory this shouldn't work - the pattern was far too large for this little delicate body, but I just had to use the piece with the gum blossom, so like the fringed yarn. 
Machine stitching, Gum blossom fringe from sewing thread. 
Frayed fringe and organza underlay. 
With a little more of the fringed yarn I had in my own stash and the stitched piece of Animotion, I think she looks like a "bush spirit" ,but why is she so sad? 
Australian Bush spirit girl 
Then I had a thought - "Animotion "= animal + emotion. She is  Binda, the bush spirit girl saddened by the loss of many native animals. . So, I made her a bilby companion from the same fabric.  A bilby is a desert  dwelling Australian marsupial. One of the species became extinct in the 1950s and the other Macrotis lagotis remains endangered. The term bilby is a  word  from the Yuwaalaraay Aboriginal language of northern New South Wales, meaning long-nosed rat. In Australia, at Easter, many people replace the Easter Bunny with the Easter Bilby, raising awareness of the campaign to " Save the Bilby" . Binda is also a name of Aboriginal origin meaning " green place". 
Binda, the Bilby Girl

Binda will be posted to return home to USA tomorrow, and as there are only three of us in this Art Dolls Only team,  I will now wait for my doll to come home. You can see her now at Ayala Art  and before at Lulus Apples.   Thanks to other members of my team - Ayala Art and Lulus Apple for participating and letting me work on their dolls. 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Australian Inspired Traveling Art Doll

Gum leaves (Eucalypt)  - dried leaves and some encased in fused organza 
 Last week I posted about Art Dolls Only "Traveling Art Doll" project. Our team , Tiny Team  is Martha (Ayala Art ) and Lulu ( Lulus Apples) both from USA and me.
When Martha's doll arrived, I was very worried ... Such a beautiful face -  I didn't want to do anything, not in character. And I had not made a doll with a polymer clay breast plate before, so I wasn't sure how to proceed. Martha had named her Linda but I nicknamed her "Dimi" - a kind of  tiny sprite! And then it came to me as I was walking in the bush near our place - an Australian bush sprite, inspired by a pile of dried gum leaves on a path!

Traveling Art Doll 1 - on arrival 
Sketches 1
Sketch - close up
The fabric I chose is a design called "Yalke" ( Aboriginal word for Australian bush onion) by indigenous artist, June Smith. The skirt is made from fabric leaves, and natural leaves encased and fused between layers of organza. 
Gum leaves skirt 
 Trying to create a srpite like figure I  made pointed toes on her feet, but I think they are too small - Perhaps it is something Lulu can remedy when it comes to her, as well as adding  her arms and hands.
feet for a sprite? 
Enjoying the sunshine in the garden before leaving.
 And just before getting packed ready for the journey, who should arrive? Traveling Art Doll 2 from Lulu via Martha.....

New arrival 
Together briefly... 

Watch this space for more "Traveling Art Doll" adventures...

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Art Dolls Only " Traveling Art Doll "

I belong to a wonderful online group called Art Dolls Only  Here is a little information about us, from our Facebook page... 

We are a dedicated and diverse team of artists who create one-of-a-kind (OOAK) art dolls using a variety of mediums.

Wondering what exactly is meant by "Art Dolls"? Here's a good explanation from Wikipedia- "Art dolls are dolls created by artists and intended as expressive and unique art objects rather than children's toys. Art dolls made by professional artists may be considered fine art. Made using a wide variety of styles and media, some are abstract or tribal, while others are incredibly realistic. They range from dolls with pre-manufactured parts to being wholly fabricated by the artist or sculptor. The term "art dolls" usually refers to human-like dolls, but not always. Art dolls can depict animals, mythical creatures, or abstract beings.

Each month we have an open challenge, and for members only, we have a really fun activity called "Traveling Art Doll". I was very excited when one of my needle felted dolls and an old family suitcase became the motif for this year's "TAD" 

My team is called "Tiny Team" - I am the only one from Australia, so it's  probably fortunate we are only three, as the distance from USA means that our dolls are a long time in transit. 
Here is my travelling art doll, here at home and on arrival at Lulus Apples in USA. 

Now follow this link to see her now... Lulus Apple, still travelling on her way now to Ayala Art  who in turn has just posted me Lulu's doll.
 Here is Martha's  doll (Ayala Art)  who flew all the way from USA - still suffering a little from jet lag, but having a good time choosing fabrics for a body...  For the moment, I have called her "Dimi" - short for "diminuto" - tiny in Spanish.  

In my next post, I'll show you what happens to Dimi while she's visiting. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Hot and Cross!

With the Easter weekend over, I can calmly reflect on what a great weekend it was. It's been a long time since I cooked hot cross buns from scratch, but when I went to the bakery last Thursday night, they had sold out! I was a little "hot" under the collar and cross, because I hadn't planned to spend Good Friday morning baking! However,  I checked the internet for an "easy" recipe . The recipe in the CWA cookbook seemed a bit complicated, but I am sure it would have produced good results, too! I am sharing the recipe link  because although Easter is over, without the cross, these buns would be a delicious treat at other times of the year.  
I have never been good at baking with yeast but all seemed to go smoothly even if the process seemed a little tedious, waiting for the dough to double in size and then do that all over again. However, in the end I  was happy with the results. Both batches tasted great, and the family ate them without complaints!  

It was such a good weekend -  doing nothing much but enjoying each other's company, an Easter Egg hunt and other quiet activities at home.