Yet again, I find myself apologizing for a delay on updating. So here is a quick post on how my zentangling art adventures have evolved: let’s use some fabric markers and zentangle on some shoes!
TOMS brand shoes are wonderful. I own a pair of plain beige canvas ones that I’ve actually worn holes in because I wear them so frequently. I bought them with the intention of painting on them, and perpetually put it off for a variety of reasons: I didn’t know what to paint, I wanted to break them in and stretch them out first, I didn’t have the right media for the project… Etc. however, when it came down to it, I was basically just scared of ruining a $55 pair of shoes that had been a gift to me from my co-coach on our church 3rd grade Upward cheerleader squad.
So, the solution? Buy some faux TOMS at the dollar store (for $6!) and play with Sharpie markers and Zentangles!
This particular pair is a work in progress. However, I’m liking the results so far, and they got quite a few compliments at church today!
So what are you waiting for? For a $1.99 marker (I bought mine at Staples, and they come in a variety of colors) and under $10 in a pair of basic canvas shoes, you have the recipe for a fun weekend project. Practice your zentangling, or if you’re nervous about drawing freehand, use any number of chalk pattern transfer methods to copy the deign of your choice. Then go out for a night on the town with you new kicks!
Recently, a commission request came through my inbox from a director I know from a prior theatre show. The mission, should I choose to accept it? Recreate this jacket ensemble (or the spirit of this jacket ensemble) of Philip Sousa:
I love projects like this. It gives me a chance to stretch my pattern creation muscles and also really delve into the history of the piece to recreate it in a historically accurate fashion.
I’m sure many of you are familiar with The Wizard of Oz. But did you know that in addition to the wonderful book series, there was a musical that predated the famous movie where Judy Garland sang us “Over the Rainbow?” Indeed there was! The 1902-1903 Operetta of Wizard of Oz was hugely popular in its day, and performances of it sold out across the country for multiple years.
Now, why am I waxing poetic about this rare musical? Well, I had the great opportunity of not only being cast in the production, but I also was commissioned to recreate the costumes for the Tin Man, the Scarecrow, and the Poppies for the show. Talk about a wonderful creative challenge that was exciting and intimidating!
Here is photo gallery that shows my process of creating these wonderful costumes. Also, you can go to the online gallery of the photos from the show to see the other costumes that were built or rented by others to create our 1903 version of The Wizard of Oz.
Creating the poppies was a different challenge. First I needed to design a hat that would look like a poppy from the top but still allow the actresses to hear and see.
Then I needed to figure out how to create it in fabric.
I know: You’re thinking “Poppy centers aren’t yellow! They’re black!” I agree. However, the reference photos from the original show depicted yellow centers, so that’s what we went with. We are all about preserving historical accuracy!
And then once I had the pattern figured out… I had to make 20 of them. So… 6 petals, times 20 poppies… Let’s just say there were a LOT of petals.
The final poppy field of hats.
Once the hats were done, I needed to make 20 capes with leafy vines attached. Again, this project got overwhelming so I was more focused on creation that capturing the process.
One of the final costumes.
The only record I had to go on was a poster from the original show that showed the Tin Man. I got to work sketching the components of the costume.
Here are my costume sketches for the Tin Man. Each piece had to be sketched, designed, pattern created, and custom measured to fit the actor portraying the Tin Man.
Me, trying on the costume just for fun.
Here it is! Although he looks like a steamroller got him, the costume actually turned out really well.
Our wonderful actors for the Scarecrow and the Tin Man, modelling their costumes that I created.
The Scarecrow was created so quickly I didn’t have time to take photos of it.