Some FANTASTIC Friday Fan Art!
I don’t recall if I’ve mentioned the fact that my mom was a doll-maker when I was a kid. She made all sorts of dolls and puppets out of all sorts of materials. Sometimes she made them for us DiTerlizzi kids, other times she gave them to friends, family and even sold some to local boutiques.
I loved watching her cut the peachy fabric and fill the bodies with wads of cloudy stuffing. It was magical to me. I’d go to bed and she’d be hunched over her Singer sewing machine on the kitchen table making tiny elven clothes. I’d wake early the next morning and see a little cowgirl, sailer boy, teddy bear, or gnome, patiently awaiting her finishing touch.
That grew into a lifelong love of puppets and dolls, not mass-produced plastic molded manikins, but well-crafted, expertly sculpted little beings. Fine art really – as there is certainly a fragment of the creator’s soul in each and every piece.
The field of one-of-a-kind dolls has really prospered in the shared universe of knowledge on the internet. Artisans can exchange ideas and methods, sell their work, and inspire one another. Such was the case with Michelle Bradshaw, a fantastically talented sculptor (and mom) working out of Atlanta. I was first shown her work by Brian Froud’s Goblins collaborator, Ari Berk, and was blown away by her amazing talent for crafting tiny creatures. Her pieces have that spark, that animus, that is so incredibly hard to capture in Sculpey, fur and feathers.
Needless to say I am thrilled and inspired by her interpretation of two of my favorite creatures in Arthur Spiderwick’s Field Guide to the Fantastical World Around You - a little sprite named Toadshade, and the enigmatic phooka. I hope you enjoy them too.
Check out Michelle’s site, Pixiwillow.com, you won’t be disappointed.
Have a great weekend!