Friday, February 19, 2010

Dragon ready to journey on...

Well - I did it! Finished the dragon commission in order to take
it to the American Craft Council Show in Baltimore this coming week.
Of course exactly how I'm going to pack it in our van, or display
in my 10x10 corner booth remains to be seen..more creative challenge.

Here are a series of photos of the final work on the dragon and a
few of the completed dragon and rider at the end. I have an
appointment with a professional photographer at the show, so
hopefully I will be able to post some good photos on my website
and blog plus a photo of the installation.
Remember this is to be suspended on the outside of a metal
spiral staircase inside a condo.

Stitching on the textiles (most from the customers' journeys).

Patina on the leather skin.

Stitching on the spokes, and finishing with beaded leather braid.

Finished hind legs with decorative cuffs.

The dragon rider. The dragon accommodated by folding down two
spokes to create a saddle.

Finished dragon head with eyes.

Finally - view of the whole dragon and rider.

Enjoy!...If you can, come to ACC Baltimore to see this. Always better in person!

Journey on! Wendy

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Dragon - leather skin and claws

This weekend I am participating in Boskone 47 in Boston. I have a booth in
the "huckster" area. After all the fine art and fine craft shows I do,
It's sort of fun being a "huckster" for a change. But before I head over,
I wanted to post a few more progress photos of "the" dragon.
I try to have any commissions relate very personally to the customer. In the
case of the dragon, my customers provided me with various textiles from their travels in Asia with the idea that I might be able to incorporate some of
them in the piece.

In the photo above, I was playing with possible combinations before attaching the leather "skin".

I use black plonge from Japan for my dragon "skin".Soft, supple,and large skins. But what is a dragon without claws...

Wetformed rawhide nails.

Sewing on the nails and claws.

Hind leg with foot and claws.

Finally here is a photo of the dragon with its full leather skin. It is looking a
little dark and creepy at this point..But don't worry, next post you will see its personality brighten with the patina I paint on the leather and the textiles attached to the belly.

Now off to hang with the sci fi literary crowd at Boskone! Peace, Wendy

Friday, February 5, 2010

Taxidermy sculpting epoxy!

As I hinted last week, I’ve been investigating new sources of materials while working on the large dragon seen in the last post. Thanks to artist friend, Valerie Bunnell, I was introduced to the magic of “Apoxie sculpt” by Aves from the Taxidermy (!) Supply house of McKenzie: No, I haven’t turned to a new art form, but this epoxy is worth taking a look at. As all epoxies, it comes in two part which you mix up. The beauty is that has a working time of up to 2-3 hours after mixing. During that time you can push, prod, sculpt to your heart's content. Full cure time is 24 hours. At that point it can be sanded, drilled, painted , carved, etc. As the container says: it “adheres to ceramic, metal, wood, stone, glass, plastic, resin, fiberglass, polymers..and more.

For my purposes, it was just the thing to attach my metal armature to wood head parts and to attach the Dragon’s “jaw” to the rest of the dragon head. Attaching wood and stone parts has always been a little tricky for me. This opens up all sorts of possibilities. The photo above shows how I used the epoxy to bond the wood to the wire armature. The epoxy comes in three colors. I chose to buy the brown since it worked best with the "stump".

Just goes to show, you never know where inspiration will come from next!

More photos of dragon as it progresses in next week’s post!

Create on! Wendy