Sunday, August 25, 2013

Painting of All Types

I showed you one of my works in progress earlier this week.  Well, these peacocks have received their colors, like their larger cousins, now living in their new home with the happy couple married today!

That is not the only painting that I've been doing recently.  If you follow my Facebook page, you will see earlier today, I finished painting one of my displays for the upcoming craft fair.  What do you think?  A little while ago, I busted out laughing as I realized that I was looking at a very warped version of Hollywood Squares, featuring the multiple personalities of Cthulhu!

I need sleep. I realize this too.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Mini Peacocks

Have I bored you enough with peacocks yet?  Well, that's too bad, because I have another peacock project to share with you.

Here are some mini peacocks that I made the other day. They were just baked tonight and will be painted tomorrow.  They can sit on the end of your finger!

Monday, August 19, 2013

The final touches...

And here, the peacocks begin getting their final touches...layering of paint to bring details to life.  The tails and back of the body were first...using a beautiful green-gold metallic paint to bring forward all of the detail work.

The front and heads were painted with a glorious sapphire blue, which I stole off of my boyfriend's miniatures work table.

I finished the details off with pearl white and a metallic black, enhancing the face along the way and adding definition.

The wings were painted white, then washed over with a thin metallic black to make the details really pop, while allowing the natural blue to shine through as well.

The final touch for the tails included placing Swarovski crystals in the eyespots of the final row of tail feathers.  This really added an extra dimension and I'll give credit where credit is was entirely my boyfriend's idea and suggestion.  He was right, it really gave the sculpture that extra pop of color.

Their large base was covered with clay, baked and then painted in a mixtures of browns, greens and taupe. This cannot be seen, but I know it is there and it added depth to the ballast, which was added next. Following the addition of the ballast was green moss and grass, carefully glued into place to create a natural scene for the peacocks to roost.

Here they are at the wedding shower. :)  They do not look as brilliant of a blue under the natural light, but I will share my friend's photo once more, which really captured the colors nicely.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Finally Looking Like Peacocks...

After getting the texturing in the tail feathers down and the basic shape of the wings and back feathers, the next day, I started the task of filling in all of the details.  Each tail took me a little over an hour to complete all of the feathering detail.  Thankfully, the bodies and wings did not take as long...I think I averaged about forty minutes per sculpture.

I really had fun creating these was tedious, but very rewarding as I saw an abstract design become more and more refined with each detail that was added.

Standing side-by-side, these peacocks are finally looking like they should.  If you've noticed, they were promoted to a bigger base.  The one I started with was about half this size and could not accommodate both birds and their gorgeous fan tails, so I had to find one that would work properly.  

A close-up of the wings and body detail.

The final step for these guys was to make their head feathers and bake them all together.  Here's a closeup of the head after baking.

Come back soon to see the painting that went into these fellows, along with the details in the base.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Peacocks Continue to Flourish...

When we last left off, the peacocks were just starting to plump up.  They had grown wings, a tail and were definitely starting to look more like birds and less like scarecrows.

I took nearly two weeks away from the peacocks, debating on what I would do next with them.  When I started to work on them some more, their tails developed nicely...well, except for the one on the left.

Oh, how I disliked that first tail.  I looked at the pictures again and again after I went to bed, nearly going back downstairs at 4am to work on it some more.  I forced myself to take a break from it, though...and tackle it again the next day.

This definitely worked to my advantage.  Had I gone with my first inclination, I might have redone the entire tail, but I figured out how to trim off the bottom layer and re-shape it to my liking.  Then, the real fun began!

Here, you can see the tail on the right has been textured with feather detail.  The one on the left, having been reshaped, is untextured, besides having the 'eyes' of the feathers put into place.

Both tails are now fully textured, as are the bodies of the peacocks, if you look closely.  If you do not look so closely, you will see my poor Cthulhus, lying painted and abandoned, ready to be given toys to play with. Soon, my little ones, soon.

In this image, (ignoring the glare of the Cthulhu), you can see the wing and body details that have started to develop on both birds.  Check back as these peacocks gain all of their feathers and their head feathers too!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

My Latest Project

For those of you following my Facebook page, you'll have seen the finished design of my latest project.

I created these peacocks for a friend's upcoming wedding.  Their colors are blue and green, with touches of peacock feathers used for decoration. I could not resist trying my hand at these colorful and elegant birds. My friend, Mike, also took a much better picture of the final product than I was able to, so I am borrowing his photo with his permission.  You should also check out his baking blog,  He has wonderful recipes!

But, these peacocks all started nearly a month ago now...when my muse, the perverted thing, came to me in the shower.  I was tossing ideas around, trying to figure out what to work on next and what would a nice sculpture be as a wedding gift.  Then these came to the first thing I did (after drying off, of course) was to rush downstairs and start working on the shapes.

Doesn't look like much, does it?  Armatures never really do...they just provide the skeleton to hold the clay together and provide it with strength and integrity.  I do have to admit, I was giggling maniacally while I was shaping the postures and heads.  (Forgive all of the photos that you will see over the next few days...they are WIP photos, thus not pretty and touched up). :)

The next day, the peacocks got their base coat of clay.  They look a bit better now, right?  Not so crane looking and more peacock-y.  

A couple of days later, they started to get even more definition.  Their tails grew, as did their wings and feet.

In the next post, I'll show you how frustrated I was at one of the peacock tails, as well as the detail work that began to include all of the feathers.  So, check back soon!