Saturday, July 30, 2016

Buffalo Girl - Finished

All done and she turned out great.  I was kind of bleary eyed painting all the beading but it really sets off the piece as does the Buffalo skull.   I decided not to paint the upper part of the dress the darker color as it would have detracted from the overall piece.   I was a little worried about mounting the skull to the figure but putting dowel from the back of it into the body locked it in place securely.  There are lots of photos in the Gallery and I will look forward to your comments as I always do.

Note:  As I mentioned earlier, Google is no longer supporting Picasa but now is using Google Plus as the host for photos.  Picasa will remain it's just that it will no longer be updated.  All my photos are already on Google Plus so for ease of operations I'm going to just let things stay the same for the time being.  

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Buffalo Skull

Spent the morning painting the Buffalo Skull for my new piece.  Looks pretty good although the photo really doesn't show all the colors used.  Before starting I checked the skull hanging in the Gallery to make sure I indicated all the major skull details, i.e., plates, nerve holes, etc. As that skull was bleached I did a little research to capture the true colors of a naturally sun bleached product.

I started out by removing the horn caps and then painting the entire skull a light gray (mudstone) followed by yellow ocher highlights, followed by brown (asphaltum) and ending with white on the parts that would be mostly exposed to the sun.  I then used straight black for the eye sockets with a little white on the outer edges.  For the horn caps I used black and then dry-brushed on some white highlights which really set off the horns texture.  Once everything has a chance to dry I'll paint on the ceremonial decoration but not too much as I don't want to overdo it.

So far so good!!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Buffalo Girl

I've been working on this one for the past 6 or 7 months.  Once it's painted I think it will be one of the best so far even though, after taking the photos, I noticed a couple areas that need to be corrected.  With the walnut base she will stand about 20" tall.  An impressive piece.

She's a Cheyenne girl, preparing for the Call of the Herd dance.  I plan on painting a few ceremonial symbols on the skull to carry that theme.  She has her skinning knife on her belt and will be ready to follow the hunters once the herd is located.  While there is quite a bit of beaded decoration on her dress and more will be added once I start painting her, I added a role of Elk teeth above the strip of
beads on her chest.  I made those with some 3/16th' dowel and inset them into the wood.   The earrings, choker disk and hair feather disk are made from hammered galvanized
tin.  Once carved, I covered the hair braids with texturing material to simulate a fur wrap.   As for the coloring, I'm thinking of using this dress as a guide:
I really like to darker colored cape.

While I had a number of Buffalo skulls aready carved the size of the figure required that I care one more.  I carved the arms and hands separate so they would fit naturally around the shape of the horn caps.  

While this was a pretty challenging project once it's finished it's going to really look nice.  I hope you agree and will look forward to your comments.  More photos in the Gallery. 

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Wandering Bull - Part 3

He's finished!!  Thank the Lord!  I thought I'd never get this one off the work table.  But, I think he turned out pretty good.  Certainly a colorful one.  I repainted the eyebrows black to try and recapture the stern look on his face that was lost when I painted on the red facial decorations.  It didn't work completely but it worked a little so will have to leave it at that.

So, I hope you like it and will look forward to your comments.

Friday, July 08, 2016

Wandering Bull - Part 2

Squeezed in a little brushwork today.  The photo looks a little distorted as I took it with my phone.  It's really not that crooked. 

One thing I've learned when painting facial decorations is that it can change or hide expressions.  That happened here.  Unpainted he looked really P.O.'d but here he looks kind of contemplative.   Will have to wait till the painting is completely done to see if there's any change and whether I can correct it.  

Really enjoyed doing the shield.  I painted the entire blank with raw sienna and followed that with some lighter tan to lighten up the center.  Next came the green, several coats, and then the red lines....mapped out using a Popsicle stick.  A liner brush really comes in handy when doing straight lines.  It took three coats to cover that green.  Then I free-handed the skull using tan, white and black.....lots of blending here.   The hooves were last done with asphaltum and outlined with black.  Oh....I also used midnight blue to put a shadow on the bottom of the shield and up the one side.  A lot of work but it's fun and the result will be quite striking once the feathers are added.  

So, it might not look like I did much but believe me it takes time to get the result your after.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Wandering Bull

This one has been on my workbench for about 6 months staring at me each day so I thought I would go ahead and finish him cause he looks a little threatening.   I still have to add a few more details....actually, I have to add a lot of details to him to flesh him out, i.e., ribbons, feathers and maybe a decorative cloth (wood) strip hanging from the back of the headress plus all the feathers to be added to the shield.   Again, he's a little larger than the normal bust standing at just under 14" with the walnut base.  With the addition of some facial decoration he should be quite striking and colorful.

While we were on our trip we stopped at the Prairie Edge store in Rapid City, SD.  Like the Cowboy Hall of Fame in OKC I seems to be magnetically drawn to this place.  It's filled from floor to ceiling with Native American art and artifacts and if you like such things you owe it to yourself to make a stop if you're in the area.  They also sell the numerous craft supplies used to make regalia.  While there I took the opportunity to take photos and will refer to those to come up with the designs for this figures beading, shield design and other decoration.

With Judy and I celebrating our 50th next weekend I hope I can get it wrapped up before the hordes of visitors start showing up.  Anyway, I hope you like him and look forward to any comments.