Friday, April 14, 2017

The Time Machine – My 2017 Philadelphia Show Gallery Piece

Ah, at last – photos of my finished piece called The Time Machine. I have had such great fun messing about with the Steampunk theme that I decided I would indulge myself again and create something intriguing. Hence, this version of a time machine and its inventor, pictured front and center.


Who knows where or when he will go when the machine gets going? The lights in the floor indicate everything is working properly.


The machine is quite complex and only the inventor knows exactly how it works.


Here is the back outside which might appear to the casual observer as an ordinary building in the factory district.



Inside, of course, it’s a different story altogether with pipes, gears, gauges and lights.



Here is a close-up of the bear inventor himself. Looks can be deceiving – inside his brain the gears are constantly turning!


One last quick peek while the inventor is away.  I wonder when and where he went?!



Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Final Photos before the Photos of the Final – Philly Gallery

This is the beginning of the assembly of some of the various parts.

The brick walls with wood trim – below is a view from the side.

A view of the back with a door for access to the battery packs.

More gears – there were a lot of gears.

The ones above ended up as you see below.

Another set – this turns into a sort of window into the works.

The first coats of paint to create rust patina on some wrought iron railings.

And the last coats.

This bit was the thing that most concerned me – creating an arched ceiling from acrylic.

A few of many, many copper strips that I added that cool greenish copper patina to.

It will all come together in some sort of reasonable way in the end.


Monday, April 10, 2017

Part 2–WIP Photos for the Philadelphia Show Gallery

A few more photos of my gallery piece under construction.  In these you might see it starting to come together.

A little more detail added to the bricks.

A peek at some of the infrastructure.

One of several small projects to incorporate into the piece.

This was the beginning of the most detailed part.  It’s an odd shape.

And lots and lots ‘rivets’ (formerly googly eyes)

Painting – 2nd layer of several.

Background.  I had one piece of paper that I wanted to use from my stash.  “Don’t goof it up”, I thought.

This photo where I was placing some of the parts and pieces is a bit misleading.  It kind of looks like I was just laying stuff down in a way that it would fit together.  There isn’t a photo of the  hours and hours of creating the ‘pipes’, TV style monitor, the ‘wavy’ solution that fuels the operation, the wiring of lights and other bits not shown. 

I have one more set of WIP photos and then I will show the finished piece.  It was both maddening and fun to create – I suppose it helped not knowing what I was getting myself into!


Friday, April 7, 2017

WIP Photos for the Philadelphia Show Gallery

The teddy bear show in Philadelphia is just around the corner. I can’t believe that it is nearly May. What happened to these last few weeks??? Oh, I know, I was thick in the process of creating my gallery piece for the show. I’m only a few (dozen) brain cells down. My, oh my! It was one crazy ride!

In any case, I did take several work-in-progress photos that I will be sharing here on Bearbits. At this point, you see the very beginning of the project (craziness). While I do have a sketchbook where a lot of my ideas get started, sometimes I just grab whatever piece of paper I have handy like in this case.

This clock face was the most fleshed out part of my idea so that’s where I began.

I painted it with several layers of various paints to get a sort of vintage rustic patina. The placement of the gears was like working a jigsaw puzzle. Probably one of the reasons I took this photo was to remember how I had them arranged so I could put them back exactly once they were painted.

Here’s a photo of the gears in the process of being painted.

At this point, I was probably on layer 4 or maybe 5. Thankfully, I seldom think in those terms until after I have finished!

Here they are complete.

And here’s the mostly complete clock face section with a vintage map background. Aw, rats! There are a few more gears that need paint. Trust me, I painted them. I was probably painting gears in my sleep.

Moving on to another part of the project, I decided that bricks would make a good wall texture for this piece. (I really must have my head examined . . .) So I spent several days, off and on, texturing foam core with a raised brick design.

These are the thoughts that repeatedly occurred in my mind. “Careful, careful.” “You’re going to need to mix more texture.” “Leave it.” “Is it dry yet?” “Only 11, 10, 9 . . . more sets to go.” Just put that on continuous play and that’s what I heard.

“Is that all?” you may wonder. No, there is more. I’ll be back with additional photos shortly!

Thanks for reading!!!!


Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Ada at the Steamworks

If you have been following along here and there, you know one of my favorite things is transformations. I love seeing what other artists create and transform – making something new and unique from something that is familiar or making something from ordinary materials. With that in mind, I present my most recent commission piece from the most basic of beginnings to the final manifestation.

This is Ada at the Steamworks.

I began with the concept of using French-style doors on the front.  The original box these were attached to wasn’t the right depth.  So, Jay went into the garage and created one that met my requirements.  It was a perfect fit.

I began by choosing elements for the front.  The theme: Steampunk

Here’s the basic layout while also trying a new technique for an exterior texture.

I loved these little flourishes so I added some gears to them  in strategic places.

More details added, more gears, cogs and googly eyes.  What?!

This is what I decided on for the final layout.

Next it was onto the rest of the outside of the box – covered in cardstock pieces.

A first coat of paint.

You can see the texture beginning to show.

The second layer of paint – on the right side.

Here’s a different perspective.

This is where I went after the second layer.

A close-up detail of one of those flourishes and a couple of the googly eyes.

And a close-up of the center latch.

After much dithering about colors and placement, I decided I was finished with the outside paint.

On to the inside details.  I began by making this box for a stand.

Treating it the same as I did the front with cardstock

and googly eyes.

The first paint layer and

the finished piece.

Another element was this chipboard frame.  It is similar in style to the flourishes on the front.

I added many gears

and again painted it.  I missed taking a photo of the final paint job but you will see it at the end.

I had such fun making the pipe works on my first steampunk piece, I decided to include some this time as well.

A coat of copper paint and

the patina.

Here you see the beginnings of the interior with the pipes in place. I held my breath most of the time when gluing them in place.  I also learned it helps to crook your mouth in a certain way.

The finished piece from the front.


The interior.


A close-up of the interior.


And Ada – close-up.  The lace is from my great-aunt many, many moons ago.

There you have it.  Ada at the Steamworks.  It was a delightful project.  Just one of many lined up for this year.  So stay tuned.  You never know what will come down the pipe.

Thanks so much for reading!


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