The smaller in-between projects I’ve been doing are requests from the kids. The best part of making them gifts, toys, or cards is their absolute amazement.
Let’s start in the order of commissions. When Brielle knew I was coming home for her 11th birthday she generated a list of desired gifts. She caught my attention when she said “I don’t know if you can find this because I don’t even know if it’s made but…” and then she asked me for a “kawaii marshmallow pillow”. She told me it was a playlist title she came up with because the words just sounded so cute together. I told her, as I have many times before, I can make just about anything.
The pillow project was by far the easiest thing I’ve done. I bought a pillow and a zip up case. She sent me a picture of the face she wanted it to have and by the end of the day I had cut out all the templates and felts. I’ll explain my little project for those who are interested. First is why felt? Because it’s cheap and easy! It’s 50 cents and comes in just about every colour. It’s flexible, cuts easy, and can be glued or sewn together. Messing up doesn’t matter much. The hardest part is matching shapes. I’ll cut out the perfect exact right size and shape but… can’t replicate it. This happened with the eyes but once I got the m relatively matching I sewd them to the pillowcase and turned my attention to the mouth. The big “U”.
I’ve learnt a few things in the fine arts like time management and improvising. All the crazy ideas you have for art pieces are nothing without the plans and materials to make them. My methods are considered craft or low art. All sculpture students at the UofA know how to operate machinery and weld. I can barely use a hot glue gun safely. I always found a way around machinery and metalworking. Ya’ know instead of plaster I’d use duct tape and garbage bags – everyday materials. I also took a lot of heat for it. I was criticized repeatedly for using low art materials or accused of not trying to learn “better” methods. I’m telling you this because it’s how I made the smile.
I didn’t want to mess up the mouth and I knew I had one shot at it. I also wasn’t about to buy a new pillowcase. I cut out mouth after mouth in cardstock until I had just the right shape. Then I used duct tape (no surprise) to create a really low tech stencil. I applied the duct tape as a full sheet to the back of the mouth I liked and cut out the duct tape. It was a single “U” and it worked excellently! I used clear tape to prevent it from moving on the pillow case and brushed on a coat of acrylic paint mixed with fluid acrylic medium. It dried, I cheered, I was done!
I am disappointed with the curve on the eyes. I’m right handed and not great with my sewing machine so everything I do has a slight curve to it. Boy Wonder said it’s great either way and I know Brielle is going to love it!
As for Zane…. this post is longer than I thought so I’ll talk about him tomorrow!
-Later gators, Ange Kid.