I have been wanting to do a week of doll art for some time, but finding work that most of you readers can draw inspiration from is not easy. A lot of doll art is about painting and creating the costumes for the figures created. Those that are mostly polymer, included the clothing and props, are highly sculptural. Although admirable and certain to bring a smile to many a reader’s face, the question was could all you many non-doll makers get as much out of a doll week as a jewelry centric week of posts. Well, I guess we’ll find out now!
Most of my pics will have more than just sculpture and fabric. But, even the fabric, the painting, the forms, composition, lines of the limbs, color palettes and so much more can be immensely inspiring. So, even if you never see yourself making a doll, when you find yourself drawn to one or a particular aspect of it, try to figure out why. And, when you can identify that particular thing you are drawn to ask, “Can that be translated into what I do in polymer?” We are not talking mimicking what you see, but identifying the characteristic you are drawn to and asking yourself if that kind of thing could work well in your work and would you enjoy it?
For instance, this piece has an amazing color palette. Do you feel a connection to these colors and the emotion they emanate? How about the decorative aspect? Do you like the textures and the swirling folds of the fabric? Can you create more movement in the way you shape or fold your clay? Would crowding texture and form like this be something you can see yourself doing in your own way, with your own favored techniques? Of course, you can just sit back and enjoy the amazing talent I hope to share with you.
This, of course, is the renowned mixed medium sculptor Virginie Ropars. Polymer is her primary medium in these pieces, but she also doesn’t limit what she will add to it. Her work truly transcends the mediums she uses. Her pieces are strikingly beautiful and hold a kind of magnetic energy and grace even though they are often a bit frightening and dark. The thing is, beauty is in everything, and so someone, somewhere, will come out and celebrate it, and sometimes, we are in awe in spite of our personal preferences.
More of Virginie’s dark aesthetic can be admired on her webpage here, but if you want a quick overview, drop her name into Google images and be prepared to be a little overwhelmed, but in a very pleasant way, I think.
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