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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