Nov 18, 2011

wolves at my door

we've begun to really have some worktimes on this multiples or large scale project for my dye and print class and have started to collect materials and inspirations for sampling and sketchbook work.
after working so much with the image of the moon, a whole pack of wolves were at the door of my brains and i was completely willing to let them in.

my idea of making a small pack of three dimensional wolves totally fit the third option of multiples making up a large scale piece, so i opened the braindoors and let the wolves come in to take over for the next little while. 
one of my favourite things about making and the whole creative process is how something can go from an image in your head, to something tangible and real in front of your eyeballs. it's especially mega funtimes if they look nearly identical, that kind of thing makes my heart jump around and pop pretty loud.

there is something about the wolf that i really connect with...not quite sure what but i don't mind. i did a bit of research and watched a few videos on the gray wolf and they're a funny bunch. they do this thing where they'll just hold another's head or snout in their mouth, kind of like a cross between keeping them in check and love bite, how flippin' adorable is that? the coloring of the gray wolf can vary anywhere from full gray, have reddish shading to either completely white or black. they can be super affectionate with each other and even to people. their heads are big, their paws are chubby huge and their size is on average, up to 2 meters in length. i want a wolf hug! not too sure about wolf kisses though...

 i've mentioned before how i try to use thrifted materials instead of buying new ones when it comes to projects. not only is it fun to have the challenge of a limited selection of what you may need but it makes you see other materials in a new light.
i originally wanted to use thrifted sweaters in this new project to full (or felt) but there is something happening in some thrift stores these days where they've hiked up their prices quite a bit.
luckily my material hunting day started with a score of a good amount of a jersey fleece from the re-use center, but my heart kept saying "sweaters!" 
i wanted to make 4 or 5 wolves and calculated about a sweater per wolf, which would have definitely added up.
i was starting to get bummed but then came across an old coat that had a sweet patterned wool for the same price as two sweaters and my heart was kind of lifted, picturing at least two and a half wolves coming out of it. then i came across a pretty large merino sweater in gray and was awesomely surprised to see the entire inside be a knitted lighter gray! way mega perfect.
i'm now hoping i can pull off making 5-7 wolves...but we'll see just how much sleep i need this time.

last summer i wanted to sell small handmade stuffed animals/ art dolls but couldn't queeze anything more than a single wolf before school started, i gave him a little tie and named him Hubert T. Wolf 'cause he's a handsome gentleman.
for one of the work periods for our hand and lock project, Kerry brought in a book that basically alluded to this wolf pack project without realizing. it was a book easily from the 70's (maybe even the 60's) of stuffed works. the funniest one in there was of a very happy robust woman topless and sprawled across a hippo but near the end of the book were stuffed animals with really creepy felt-cut eyes. i came across one for a pretty old school looking fox laying down, thankfully i photocopied it figuring i'd use it for this summer to continue with the small stuffie idea for the shop.

it took a bit figuring out just how to change a few of the pieces from this fox laying down, into a standing wolf but i just so happen to be the daughter of a pretty neat little spanish lady who knows how to sew just about anything.  

after sewing this guy up and lightly stuffing him, i had to tweak the back legs little more but officially  can start on cutting out my pack of wolves!
since i can't somehow upload pictures from my brains (not yet at least...) i had to hunt out some art dolls and stuffies with similar textures i had in mind for my wolves. i did a little search on Etsy and came across a pretty wonderful little shop called Every Eskimo. she sells antique and vintage things but also makes these way adorable little stuffies of foxes, birdies and sea otters which happen to have the exact texture i had in mind for my pack of wolves.

in the next few weeks i'll be doing some hand sewing texture samples and piecing together  the final wolves of my pack. it's going to be wicked to see them coming along and basically coming to life.
trust me that i'll be tweeting loads about them. oh which i should mention, i've finally figured out how to get them funny tweets on my fan page, yay!

i now leave you with a pretty great tune from Oh Land that seems quite fitting. funny how often that happens with my posts isn't it... :)

internally yours,
sister valentine


Michael Howkins said...

Wicked. I too am a huge fan of the wolf. If I had the coin I'd totally buy one from you

Sister Valentine said...

keep your eyes peeled come the summer, there could be a wee one just right in your price range :)