Sunday, September 14, 2014

My First Altered Barbie Using My Splatter Method Technique To Doll Making

"My Shaman Team"
Altered Barbie and Photo by Gloria von Gesslein
aka: Mrs. Art Doll Maker

The Goddess Dolls Online Yahoo Group had an Altered Barbie Challenge this past month and boy, was this a challenge for me.  This was my very first time altering a Barbie and I didn't really know where to begin or what to do. 

After researching techniques to learn how to "properly" alter them and what other people were doing in this area for inspiration and guidance, I tried several attempts but miserably failed each time. Nothing I did seemed to work.

Since the deadline was fast approaching, I instead thought about falling back on some of my own methods to see what I could come up with.  Still, failure after failure. Nothing was coming out the way I had planned. 

Finally, I thought, okay, I gotta something out and was going to turn her into an icicle doll which was working out well. In the end, I turned away from this because it seemed more like cheating since she was covered up completely with fur/feathers instead of actually being altered. That wasn't the purpose of the challenge.

Then, I decided to play. So frustrated by this time. Let's make a mess. Spread out the paints. Bring out the glitter...must have glitter!  What doo-dads do we have to use and let's throw it all on.  I call this my "Splatter Method" Technique which I have used for many years and have always found great success with it.  Both Barbie and I were covered in paint, washes, glitter, and everything else that we touched. Basically, we were rolling in the stuff.

At first, she looked atrocious to say the least. I discovered years ago, even though something can look disastrous when you're in the process, stick with it because it might turn out pretty good.  

This is what I came up with. 

"My Shaman Team"
Altered Barbie and Photo by Gloria von Gesslein
aka: Mrs. Art Doll Maker
Detailed Photo

She has words on her body which says Break Thru, Doorway, Flight, Centered.

Ironically, some of the words on her wings were smeared with paint and almost form a sentence. Those are: daily, energy, around, that, you, congruence (come together).  I interpreted it as the daily energies that are around can affect how you come together. 

Then, I noticed little splatters of paint right next to another 3 words but they are not highlighted like the ones above, They looked like little asterisk and underline marks. These words were: judge ourselves and breakdown. 

Opposing messages. When we judge ourselves, there's a breakdown in our spirits. 

But, when I put the two messages together, there's a connection.  The daily energies that are around can affect how you come together and how you're feeling about yourself, positively or negatively.  Did you ever walk into a room or talk with someone and feel completely drained?  Or, feel energized and really good? 

This reminded me to be watchful who I bring into my life and make a conscious effort to live in a positive environment.  Life and days are just too short.  As we get older, time continues to fly by in the blink of an eye. You look up and ask, "What happened? Where did all that time go?"

Aside from that, I love African and tribal art. It is so inspiring. The colors, the patterns, the textures, the symbols, the earthy element, everything about it touches me deeply.

At the end, the piece reminded me of something shamanic which is how the name was derived. As the faces were being cut out and reflecting on her painted mask, the words, "My Shaman Team" kept coming to mind.