My husband has a way of finding the perfect book for any gift giving occasion. My recent birthday was no exception. I was thrilled to receive a copy of Historic American Indian Dolls, by Forrest Fenn. He was listening to me chatter about my "Apache Medicine Bag" doll idea! I will enjoy absorbing the stories about these dolls and their children.
I realize that it would be impossible for me to make an American Indian doll, and probably inappropriate to even try. That is not my plan. But, this book is full of inspiration about textures and details that I can incorporate into my work. For example, I noticed that most of the dolls have shoulders and arms that curve around the figure instead of sticking straight out to the sides, as in my current design.
In the process of working through this idea I discovered that the arms on my figure were a bit short. I've been back to the drawing board on this so many times now, why not make another trip? The new arms are more complicated to construct, but make a more graceful figure.
I have admired encaustic paintings for some time. The deep glow of the wax surface is hard to resist.
I finally found an interesting opportunity to take a short workshop last fall at the Encaustic Art Institute here in Santa Fe. I loved it! I invested in some very simple tools and supplies so that I could give a try at home.
" What stinks? It's giving me a headache!" were the comments my efforts prompted. And, truth be told, I had a headache, too, and my eyes were irritated. More ventilation needed! So, fast forward to this fall. I set up everything in the garage, opening the double door and using a large box fan. Ventilation still seemed to be a problem so I finally moved the whole operation to the back porch on a few fine fall afternoons.
It is pretty easy to see that I don't know what I'm doing here, and have almost no control over anything. That is part of the charm! There is a lot to learn on this, but it is all on hold again until a warm spring day.