Friday, October 8, 2010
I am rather embarrassed to note that it has been nearly 2 months since my last blog post! Eeek. Where does the time go? Here in Vermont we are seemingly skipping right past autumn and going directly to winter. Not really, but it seems that way; what with all the rain and rain and more rain. The one thing that is good about this time of year is that I seem to get back to working on creative things, which for me, is always a good thing. Before too much longer, it will be skiing, and that's one of the only reasons I can think of to be in Vermont in winter.
Yesterday I finished my second in a series I am working on of American icons. I have a bit of a thing for the "Founding Fathers" to be honest. I first made up a doll of Benjamin Franklin late last year, which I so liked, that I decided to do a doll of George Washington as well. Ben was so cute, he even made it into Contemporary Doll Collector Magazine. To be honest, so did the dolls I made of Olive Malvery, Ambrose Bierce and my aging diva, Brunhilde, but I am especially proud of Ben, as he was fat and frog-like, and I just like how he turned out.
The thing with these Founding Father guys is, they aren't the most handsome of fellows. Snappy dressers, for sure, but Ben Franklin was well, quite round, and bald, and George, well, he never smiled. I think it might be the teeth. Apparently his teeth tended to fall out one by one, causing him quite a bit of discomfort, and then the devastation of having to wear falsies, which I believe never fit him quite right.
In any case, I studied the portrait of George done by Stuart Gilbert in 1797, which, in my opinion, is George at his most regal. I painted his face, with his customary scowl and gave him the customary white hair with the curled ends that was the style of the day. I did a little research and apparently George never wore wigs. He had his own hair, which was quite thick and curly. He also wore quite substantial sideburns, which made the wig making on a flat face a bit tricky. In any case, the underlayer of hair is wool roving from my own 2 silly sheep. The top layer is mohair, which I baked in the oven to preserve the curl.
I gave George black cotton velveteen britches and a vest, a silk charmeuse blouse with flounced sleeves and a cravat, and a soft black velvet coat with an acid green silk lining. The buttons on the vest are freshwater pearls. The shoes are black silk with seed bead buckles. All in all, I think he cuts a stylish figure, if not too handsome.