Thursday, April 7, 2016

STEAMPUNK - THE VICTORIAN AGE OF SCIENCE FICTION

"It was a somebre snowy afternoon, and the gas-lamps were lit in the big reverberating station. As he paced the platform waiting for the Washington express, he remembered there were once people who thought there would one day be a tunnel under the Hudson through which trains of the Pennsylvania railway would run straight in New York. There was the brotherhood of visionaries who likewise predicted the building of ships that would cross the Atlantic in five days, the intervention of the flying machine, lighting by electricity, telephonic communication without wires, and other Arabian Nights marvels.
 E.Wharton, The Age of Innocence
... and so we continue to Dream...


This post is my first monthly post as a Design Team member for Retro Cafe Art Gallery. I love Steampunk and Santos Cage Dolls, but strangely enough I have never combined the two .... until now. What really sent me over the edge to make this doll now was this piece:
While searching for something on Etsy one day, I came across this vintage contraption and I was surprised to find out that it was an early mousetrap. It is called the "Easy Setting Choker". I thought it would make a fantastic addition to a steampunk doll. To my surprise, it fit perfectly in the bottom of the large cage doll.

Therefore, I am using a large Santos Cage Doll Shrine kit. The first thing I do is to lay out all the pieces of the kit and decide what I am going to create on each piece. (It is easier to paint, stamp, stencil, etc. on the pieces before assembling them together). 


All the pieces for this doll were painted using the VerDay Paint Kit only. I loved seeing each piece emerge with it's own color and patina. I also set out other items I might want to add and gave them some rust and age before hand.





I made some of the items that I added and found others in my stash of treasures.







 I was really happy to finally be able to use these wheels that I have been holding on too and I loved the way that they turned out after using the magic VerDay paint on them. (Seriously, you have to get some).

                      VerDay Paint and Patina Kit -goes a long way.

 This is before the paint on one of the wheels.

 This is after using the paint on them. Now, they look old and rusted just the way I like them. It's easy peasy!

I found this jewelry piece some time ago and saw that it would make a great breast plate. It was a little large to turn it upright like I wanted. It would have prevented the arms from moving freely, so up side down worked okay too.
Here is the before and after on it, using VerDay paints only. (The word is Magic). 


                                     Before.......
                And after. Amazing, isn't it?


Next, I glued the wheels to the bottom of the cage and let them dry over night and proceeded to work on other pieces.

Before attaching the sides of the cage to the bottom, I add any items that I want inside the cage to the bottom piece. On this piece it would be the mouse trap. Once you glue the side pieces, you may not be able to get your items to fit through the slats, so be sure to insert your items first.


After completing the bottom. I added the slats to the sides, adding a little glue on each tip before inserting into the slots. I only painted one side of the slats and added some paper strips to the other side. If you see the original picture of the mousetrap,you will see there are holes all around it, I am guessing that is where the unsuspecting poor little mice went inside.:(  I added small light bulbs in each hole. Then I added some metal numbers and some  silver and rusty mini hardware pieces "Mechanicals" by Finnabair and Prima. (I used these pieces in lots of places on the doll, they came in handy).

Now that the bottom half of the doll is complete, I worked on the top part of the doll before attaching the top and bottom together.

 I started with the face and then tried my hand at goggles using mini masonite eye glasses from Retro Cafe Art Gallery and then placing two little jump rings on top of the glasses.

I filled in the goggles with diamond glaze for the look of glass.
Next, I put the arms together using the brads that come with the kit. I usually cut the brads shorter and then clamp them good with plyers to make sure they are good and tight. 

 I love these clock hands and I couldn't get them to work on the head piece but then I spotted the holes and they looked to be the same size as the brads. I love the results of the hands on each arm.
 Next, I began to dress the front of the doll giving her personality. I used the breast plate I painted earlier and made this little jewelry piece by adding a collage image and a clear acrylic cabochon, which makes it look magnified. Then I added a little chain around her neck and secured it with E6000 adhesive. I used this adhesive on the entire doll, it is strong and works really well.

 I also used two jewelry findings on each shoulder of the doll. They are concave on the back side, so they fit nicely over the top brad of each arm. The two pieces above the shoulder are also metal jewelry findings and they are actually attached to the wings. I glued the wings on after the front of the doll was completed.



The top piece was constructed and then glued to the back of the dolls head after all the pieces were good and dry.

All gears and numbers were from Retro Cafe Art Gallery and the metal rose and metal propeller were found objects and I just love that you can  actually spin the metal propeller. 

 This is the back side  of the head piece where I added more gears.















 Next I added the wings and also added a brass cross jewelry finding that I painted with the Magic Paints to age. The vintage vacuum tube is sitting on a vintage metal bobbin holder for thread and I replaced the thread with copper wire and aged the wire with paint. The word journey is a metal tag and is glued on each side of the wings.

I glued the top and bottom parts together by placing the top part in the slot on top of the bottom cage and secured it with the E6000 adhesive.


 I knew I wanted this doll to have chains, I mean what steampunk girl doesn't wear chains? I did not know how to attach them and that's where the awesome "mini hardware mechanicals" came in to play again. I glued the little screws on the top part of the base and once they were dry, I added a large jump ring to the chain and placed it over the screw  and glued it down. It worked perfectly.


The finishing touches were just as much fun, like decorating the Christmas tree. I added some gears to an old key, added a couple glass vials, and other embellishments that I found in my personal stash.
 I found two old vintage clips that were already aged and just clipped them on the side, they provided great support for some heavier embellishments and I thought they looked pretty cool.



Another little screw mechanical added to a gear on an old key.













"Sweet dreams and flying machines in pieces on the ground." James Taylor

"Today satellite photos make the planet seem so small. Where is the adventure? Steampunk is a sort of dream, the way we used to daydream about the world. It's like part of your childhood just bursting forward again." Robert Brown, Abney Park

Here are her finished photos. Thanks for staying with this long post, but she took awhile to complete and I had a blast making her.

 


I struggled a bit with trying to get her photos, this Steampunk girl is tall, a whopping 21" tall from her wheels to her propeller.

 I love that you came by to visit and comment....Now if you will please excuse me while I recharge my flamethrower! :)
XO 
 

 Supplies I used for this post:

41 comments:

  1. What a wonderful crazy contraption! So much fun seeing all the detail and how she comes together. You really capture beauty in you sweet figures ♥
    Thanks for visiting my blog, and desk of course at WOYWW.
    Wishing you a wonderful, sunny and creative weekend from southern Germany
    ♥ Michelle (aka MiSchra)

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  2. What an absolutely STUNNING creation! With a true Steampunk feel. AWESOME!!!

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    1. She was so fun to make! Your kits best Kristin!!
      xoxo

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  3. LOVE the choice you made for her goggles!!!! Plus the green is...well...my fave color of all time. I likewise have had a thing for metal for years LOL so I like the design! Thanks for stopping by my Art Garden blog with you kind comment!
    If you'd enjoy finding more of my Steam stuff, you can also vsit my bigger blog (I now have 2)
    www.plushpossumstudio.blogspot.com is where there is an entire category devoted to the Steam theme.
    I do not like the scarier or darker aspects of the genre, but I really do like some of its creative stuff. So much FUN!
    :)

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    1. Thanks so much, I will definitely visit your other blog!!
      xo
      Kim

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  4. Oh my, oh my, oh myyyyyyy dear Kim - I am speechless. Well, not really - I can think of words like: THE MOST AMAZING EVER, OVER THE MOON FABULOUS, BALL OUT OF THE PARK STUNNING and on and on. Now, mind you, I am not steam punk or doll savvy so... this may not be that INCREDIBLE to others but to me.... I'm just BLOWN AWAY by the MAGNIFICENCE of your creativity on this artwork. She is "BEAUTIFULLY AND WONDROUSLY MADE' for sure. Her colors are GLORIOUS and each piece is just totally RIGHT and PERFECTLY placed. To me... your Steampunk Girl needs to be in a gallery or museum. She is the epitome of TRUE ART WORK to me. CAPTIVATING ART at it's BEST. XXj.

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    1. Joi, I am sending you a big hug just as soon as I pick my melted heart up off the floor. You have truly blessed me today with your comments on my piece!!!!
      xoxoxo
      Kim

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  5. Oh my goodness how cool is this ! My jaw is on the floor, the details and the careful way you have planned your doll is just outstanding. I am in LOVE with her, the best Steampunk project I have ever seen ! Totally outstanding. I have signed up as your newest follower.
    Hugs, Julie x

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    1. So nice to meet you Juliz and Thank you for your very kind comment! I take them all to heart and cherish everyone!
      Hugs!
      Kim

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  6. WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW AMAZING, totally out of this world, I am so in love with your Victorian Doll. Every detail is so inspiring and the end result is well WOW WOW WOW. Happy Art :-) Kezzy xxx

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    1. Thank YOU Kezzy!!!! My heart does a happy dance every time someone loves what I make as much as I do! :)
      Thank you for your visit and awesome comment!
      Blessings!
      Kim

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  7. Kim, amazing piece and beautifully written/snapped tute. Thanks for sharing, I enjoyed learning how you made her. xoxo

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    1. Thank you Aimeslee!! So glad you visited and I appreciate your comment!

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  8. Kim, Pick me up off the floor!
    Seriously, this is beyond amazing! I love the concept and the merging of so many elements which together, make her come alive. The patinas are incredible (mid-way through your post I did a search for this product but cannot source it in the U.K. - typical!!!), the patinas help to strengthen the story telling quality of this astonishing piece of art.
    Kim, I just have to say this because it was my first thought - she would look amazing in the pages of a Stampington magazine :)
    Wishes
    Lynne

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    1. Thank you so much Lynne for your kind comments! I take them all to heart! I may think about sending her to Stampington, not sure. She is a big girl :) I appreciate you saying so anyway, that means a lot to me. I don't mind to get the VerDay Kit for you and mail it to you if you would like me to check on the costs for you.
      Hugs!!
      Kim

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  9. She is magnificent. She has rendered me speechless beyond that.

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    1. Such a nice compliment, thank you so much Holly! :)

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  10. Absolutely fascinating and inspiring! not to mention WAY Cool!! You did a bang up job Kim- best steampunk santos I have yet to see!
    hugs,Jackie

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    1. Thank you ever so much Jackie!!!!
      You made my day!!
      XO
      Kim

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  11. Oh Kim!! She's the bomb diggity!! She's spectacular and that mouse trap is BRILLIANT!!!! I love her!!!!

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    1. Thanks so much Chrissy!! It all started with that crazy mouse trap!!! :)
      XO
      Kim

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  12. Oh kim!!! I love this so much!! Gorgeous work of art!

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  13. OMG Kim!! She is amazing! and I love the vintage mouse trap- who knew?! but, that is so cool and the perfect piece for her. I love the patina- that is fabulous! Love her!!

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  14. Wow Kim...there is not just one word I can think of that would describe the amazingness of this piece...everything about it is just awesome...I love her

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    1. Thank you Monica!! I have the same feeling about your amazing find at the vintage market,I can't wait to see the finished piece. That was artistic vision at it's best!!
      xoxo

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  15. Kim Collister - this is quite simply a masterpiece - no other word for it! I was gasping and exclaiming throughout this wonderful post! Well done! Right from the beautiful quote from Edith Wharton (The Age of Innocence is one of my favourite novels) to the inclusion of that fantastic mousetrap to the fabulous 'coming together' of every wondrous part of this I was riveted! Congrats on being part of Kirsten's DT. This is a great first piece and I'm really longing to see more now! xxx

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    1. Thank you Julie, not all visions I have come together so nicely as this one did. Some of them really challenge me. This was one of my favorites I have made recently. I hope the others cooperate as well! :) Thank you for commenting on this post!!
      xoxo

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  16. Wow! This is so gorgeously, fantastical, magical!! I love it so much. What a talent you have!

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    1. Thank you so much Karen Mallory! I appreciate you!!
      xo
      Kim

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  17. She is so cool!! I love everything about her, she is fabulous as are you!

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  18. Absolutely Steamy!! Love, love, love it. Thanks so much for sharing your creative adventure.

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  19. Love love love her!!! I have a santos kit but it i have trouble gluing the slats to the cage. Also where did you find the great propeller? You are awesome artist! Love following you!

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    1. Lisa,
      Thank you! Yes, the slats are always kind of tricky. I use wood glue on them and hold it in place until it can stand up a little and then I work quickly to get the top put on the slats and straighten them before they dry. I actually found the propeller in a bin of broken toys in a flea market. I had to buy the whole box to get the propeller, but it was worth! :) I am always looking for pieces to use in art.
      Happy Creating to you!!
      Kim

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  20. She is stunning Kim! A vintage mouse trap! WOW! You did an amazing job with her and what fab tut! xo

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    1. Thank you so much Nancy! You know I am a huge fan of your work! Such a cherished compliment coming from an art sister I so admire!
      xoxo
      Kim

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  21. Finally found time to sit down and read this stunning tutorial. IT IS AMAZING!!! You really out-did yourself here, girl. Bravo.
    ~Linda

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  22. Wow! I love her!! Now I want to make one. Thanks so much for the tutorial.

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