Sunday, April 19, 2009

Making Babies (Clay that is!)

Yesterday, Ginny, Marsha and I got together. I was the designated teacher as I'd been practicing making babies for the past week or two. Ginny is in a group of porcelain doll artists. They want to learn how to sculpt in polymer clay. Ginny asked if I would give it a go.

I had told Ginny that she would have to learn to sculpt a baby before the class so that she'd be able to help. I wasn't going in to the class without an assistant. As it turns out Marsha is off work the day of the class so she too will be an assistant next month at the 'real' class.

We 'set up shop' yesterday afternoon for a trial run. I preconditioned the clay. Ten parts Super Sculpey to one part white Premo. I had a few preliminary diagrams drawn for Marsha and Ginny to use as size guides. We settled into the craft room and got to work.

First we made little balls of different sizes, using the diagrams I'd drawn and positioned them in the right places.

That's the butt ball off to the right by itself. Every baby elf's gotta have a decent little butt.
We were moving right along and I assured Marsha and Ginny that little hands and feet would magically appear soon. After all elves are magical little beings and given a chance they'd pop right out of the clay. I told them that with just a little nudge of assistance here and there, they'd venture forth into the room. Ginny wasn't quite believing me yet, she was still nervous about finding that first tiny hand. Marsha was very quiet, I think she was trying to sneak up on her elf.
Before we knew it though, we all had heads, arms and legs. We did use a Penni Jo Sweetbrier mold for the face to give us a head start. Those were baked first, then the back of the head was attached. That way, nobody lost their noses in the head smooshing.

That's Ginny's on the left, mine in the middle. Notice both our elves are surprised to find so much of themselves showing. Marsha's elf, on the right, is cool and calm. Marsha apparently gently sort of pulled her's out of the underbrush... very quietly without waking her up. She has a calmer little creature who's still snoozing.

Marsha's elf legs were especially cute! I had to take a separate picture. It seems her elf was going to be a bit chunky.

We went on our search for our little elve's bodies. They were still holding out on us. Using the biggest ball of clay, we asked them to appear. It was amazing!

Here's Marsha's fat little elfkin. It seems this little creature already has the sleepy giggles. Marsha must have tickled her elf out into the open.

Marsha and her baby were starting to bond!

Ginny and Marsha were both engrossed in finding their elves.

Ginny's little girl is long and lean... It took a bit of extra attention for Ginny to get her elf's body out of the underbrush. She pulled and nudged and finally got her baby all the way out. Then suddenly, with one last tug, there she was, a cute little butt nekked elf. There was a big grin on both their faces.

Ginny's elf startled her at one point when she suddenly began to develop cute little baby wrinkles as Ginny move her arms and hands around to find out what position she liked best.

The little elves moved to the warmer (oven) so we could convince them to stay around and not go hiding under bushes again, without permission anyway.

As soon as the babies were out of their warmer and cooled off a bit, it was time for a hairy adventure. We asked their opinions on hair color. Ginny's elfkin was adamant, had to be pink. So pink it was. Marsha's elf insisted on a firey look to help her pretend to be awake.

We found their wings hidden in a bottle of Kato Liquid Clay. A bit of wire from under the bushes and some tiny glass beads for shine, all elf babies need shine, and our elf wings were ready for the warmer also.

We used E-6000 glue to attach the wings. It was getting late so we decided to do the eyes on our own later when the hands were steadier. Here's the three little elfkins, all decked out in their wings and hair. If only they could see! I'll post the final portrait soon...

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