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SC01: Sculpting Whimsical Faces

w/ Margene Crossan


video sleeve image

$24.95 + S&H

Table of Contents:

Making a Mold
Head & Ears
Toothy Smile
Sad & Tearful
Open Mouth Cry
Ethnic People
The Elders
Evil Witch
Hair & Makeup
Men & Children

Approx. Running Time: 79 minutes

Face it!
You're the Creator!

When it comes to sculpting faces using the new oven-baked clays, there's no better teacher than former Disney "Imagineer" Margene Crossan. Because she's a full-time RV'er, Margene is known as The Gypsy Artist. But her teaching style is anything but Bohemian. In fact it's simple, direct, and easy to understand.

In "Sculpting Whimsical Faces," part of the latest series of Master Artisan videos from Mindstorm Productions, creators of the Master Dollmakers and Master Miniaturists series of videos, Margene teaches you how to create some delightful characters with a variety of expressions, using the same generic face mold.

"Have fun. Relax. Take your time," says Margene as she guides you into the exciting world of new clays. "One of the nice things about having a video," she says, "is that you can rewind and go over the same step over and over again until you get it right."

To make sure you get it right from the start, she begins by offering you a detailed look at the simple tools and easy-to-get materials you'll need to work with the variety of faces you'll be creating.

"People often ask me where I get my ideas," she says. "Actually, they're everywhere!" Among her favorite idea-generating places are the children's section of bookstores and the greeting card section of her grocery store. But by far her favorite reference tool is her own face.

"I keep a mirror on my desk when I'm working," says Margene. She then shows you how she makes faces while she's working and encourages you to do the same. "You'll be surprised and entertained at the same time," she jokes.

Once your tools and materials are laid out, you'll learn how to make a simple press mold using a small doll's head and Sculpey. You'll see now easy it is to press the clay to create the mold, and smooth out the rough edges to bring out the features of the face. You'll now use this generic mold to create whimsical faces with a variety of expressions.

If you want to learn how to make a doll's head from scratch, Margene suggests you study "Sculpting Miniature Dolls" with Evelyn Lenz Flook, also available from Mindstorm Productions.

In the next section of the video Margene teaches you how to use a chart to make sure the ears are proportionate to the rest of the head. And she offers tips to make the ears look realistic. And if you find the ears aren't perfect, "don't worry about it," says Margene. "A face is not symmetrical. If one ear is higher than another, that's O.K. It doesn't have to be perfect."

Once the ears are in place, you're ready to begin creating the first of your whimsical faces... the Toothy Smile. In this section you'll learn how to make sure the teeth are even. Margene also teaches you a simple, yet very effective way to make and paint your doll's eyes.

Then with a few simple strokes using your various tools, you'll create an embarrassed face, a sad and tearful face, open mouth cry, and an angry face.

Once you've mastered these whimsical expressions, Margene will show you how to mix different colored clays to create realistic flesh tones for Asian, Mexican, and Native American faces.

Need a grandma and grandpa to add to your doll collection? No problem. On this video Margene will show you how to age your dolls and even how to make them gain a little weight. And if you want to add a little fantasy to your dollmaking skills, she's demonstrate how to make an Evil Witch, complete with pointed nose and chin, using evergreen Fimo.

Once your faces are complete, you'll learn how to add the finishing touches, such as hair and makeup, using common lipstick and a garlic press or clay gun. You'll even learn how to correct mistakes.

Although the faces that you'll make with this video are primarily of women, in the final section of this video Margene shows you how to use the techniques you learn for making men's and children's faces. The video ends with a video collage of dozens of examples of dolls you can create using the techniques you learned. These same techniques can be used to create expressions on any size doll, simply by altering the size of the tools.

In conclusion, Margene offers the following reminder as inspiration. "Do anything your imagination tells you to do," she says. "It's all up to you. You're the creator."