Drawing Down the Moon (The Workshop)

She’s finished! You can learn to make her. I will be teaching a three-day workshop next April 29-31, 2011 at Artistic Figures in Cloth in Columbus, Ohio. For more information, please visit: http://www.cyndysdolls.com/index.htm

High Priestess

Here’s The class description:

The High Priestess is a beautiful, young female dancing figure. She is posed on one leg with the other knee raised high. One arm is over her head and the head is bent backward. She wears only a diaphanous silk chiffon gown. Her hair hangs freely down her arched back. High Priestess Drawing Down the Moon is a 19 inch fabric sculpture. This three-day intense class is designed for the advanced skilled doll maker. However intermediate doll makers would qualify if you have very good hand sewing skills. As you can imagine creating a doll of with such natural beauty takes time and skill. This is a class you will never forget, and you will acquire skills of concentrated precision. You will need to do your homework before coming to class. The homework is basic but it must be done in order not to be an interruption to the other students in the class.

Home work will start with Gloria mailing you the pattern, sewing instructions, fabric and dream-seamer tool. She will send this to each student 4 to 6 weeks prior to class. The entire doll skin and head must be stitched prior to class.

Day One:  In class you will wrap a wire armature; insert it into the sewn torso and stuff firmly and smoothly around the armature. The torso will be closed and needle modeled to form the musculature of a young female dancer. Legs will be trimmed, treated, turned, armature inserted and stuffed.

Day Two:  Gloria will instruct you how to stuff the sewn skull and affix the cotton-spandex overlay. The nose, eye-sockets, dimensional eyes, jaw and open mouth will be modeled and stitched. Ears will be stuffed, needle modeled, stitched and affixed to the head Students are encouraged to pre-stitch two or more heads.

Day Three:  The head will be pinned and stitched to the torso. Hands will be constructed of wire woven and wrapped with floral tape and inserted into sewn turned gloves. Arms will  be armatured and stuffed, assembled and attached to the torso. Legs will be pinned in place using a master drawing as a pattern for accuracy and balance. Time permitting, costuming and wigging as well as coloring face and hands and painting boots will be discussed and demonstrated.

This class is all about learning new techniques, not completing a doll. Complete instructions will be handed out in class which will help to complete the figure at home.  Some advanced students and those who work after class may just finish the piece in three days.

Here’s what else is going on! Continue reading

I’m 12 Times Faster Now (Designing a Doll — Part 3)

My first Naked Guy took 2 years to design. Drawing Down the Moon is basically done in 2 months.  The chest (read boobs) and the feet are both different. They took the most time. She is still a work in progress. I haven’t yet needle modeled the toes on the bent leg and the head and arms are pinned in place.  The head has to have the overlay placed on the face and the features stitched.

After the entire figure has been colored and wig made and stitched in place I will make her sheer dress. I can’t stitch the arms in place until she is dressed then I can needle-model the lifted arm to create the underarm area.  I am quite pleased with her.

I will be teaching this doll at Artistic Figures in Cloth in Columbus Ohio Next April.  Cyndi will have the website up at the beginning of September.  My friend Susie McMahon will teach a new class there as well. So start to put aside the loose change so you can join us there.

Day with Dolls

August 7th is this year’s Day with Dolls in Mount Vernon, NY. I have been asked to do the same demo (Needle Model a Pretty Face) that I did last year on Long Island. With any luck, my new DVD of Needle Model a Pretty Face will be ready by then. It includes everything you need to needle model eyes (with expression), nose, and both closed and open mouth. It also includes coloring the finished face. It will be on two DVDs because it will run between three and four hours to cover everything. This is for watching on your TV as well as your computer, and it is broken into many chapters so that you can go directly to the section you want. The price will be very reasonable.

If you want to come to Day with Dolls, it is $20. Check out the registration form at http://3dclothdollclub.blogspot.com/2010/06/2010-day-with-dolls.html. Doors will open at 9am for a light breakfast, registration starts at 9:30, and demos start at 10am. For more information, call 914-667-7100.

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11 Bodies Found in Dumpster (Designing a Doll – Part 2)

Bodies in a Dumpster

Bodies in a Dumpster

Three weeks ago I began working on the torso for the High Priestess (Drawing Down the Moon). I sculpted the pieces, marked the seaming, and began to drape, make slopers, cut, stitch and stuff. Number 12 finally works!

This is not too bad, since it took over a year to get a final pattern for Prince Charming who became David’s Nude… I ended up with about five dolls that were almost good enough, and one that I was happy with. I also had a giant plastic trash bag filled with body parts that didn’t work! I used that bag of body parts to give a program to my UFDC doll club in NYC. I called it “Designing a Cloth Doll, The Creative Process… At least I got some use out of them.

Body 12

Body 12

As you know, muslin stretches. To get the stuffed muslin form to be the same shape and size as the clay one is a challenge. I can’t tell you how many rejects went into the “bone yard” because I have problems with inside, outside, left, right upside and down side…

Now I start the legs and feet. Hopefully that won’t take another three weeks.

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Drawing Down the Moon (Designing a Doll)

Moon Dancer Side

Drawing Down the Moon

I have had many requests over the years for a pattern for The High Priestess. I made that doll about 15 or so years ago. I want to remake her with the new techniques I have learned since that time. I don’t think I can go backwards, even to use the pattern. I have every pattern I have ever designed — gotta clean out these files someday…  She is 16-inches high, made in ultra Suede fabric with a wefted mohair wig. She is draped with silk chiffon. It took many hours to roll that hem.

High Priestess Aux Camera

High Priestess 3D Model - Aux Camera

High Priestess Main Camera

High Priestess 3D Model - Main Camera

Jim used Poser 7 to make a 3D model of the High Priestess based on the Victoria 4 character by DAZ to set up the pose and get my profile drawings printed out so that I had actual size drawings from every side (including from the top, which is bizarre to try to work with but the measurements were nice to have).

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