This years Imitation Of Life Construction Company's "Dimensions In Dollmaking" show at the San Diego Convention Center (courtesy of the FABULOUS San Diego Quilt Show) gave a theme challenge of "Make Me Laugh". I have said it before, and repeat my prior disclaimer....I don't do 'funny'. I don't do 'whimsical'. Heck, I pretty much don't even do 'color'. I was totally disenchanted with this years theme. So when I lack interest in something, I basically don't even bother with it. I become lazy and don't hand in my best work. Lifelong flaw.
So here's my 'lazy'. I did finish a doll long before begun and abandoned in my drawers. There's nothing funny about her. She represents a real person, who though in possession of a fabulous sense of humor, suffered through much heartache and tragedy. This tragedy is behind why she is believed to have never really left her old home. I'll go into more detail about who she really is closer to Halloween.
At any rate, this woman's countenance did not portray the happy moments in her life. She became a dour, pinched (albeit extraordinarily well dressed) version of her younger self. And who can blame her? Her husband became abusive, her toddler died in her arms, her daughter committed suicide, her son became a town drunk who hung out in the red light district, her other daughter died young leaving two children to raise, her granddaughter was killed at the age of 8, her wee 3 year old great granddaughter found poison (at grandma's house). I could go on, but it's too depressing.
So, if anyone needs a laugh or a happy moment, it's obviously this poor woman. So she decided to attend this doll show with her own challenge to the other dolls: 'make me laugh...PLEASE', she says to them. I gave her a tacky alias...in case anyone doesn't understand why she's attending the show. I presume anyone reading her name will get it. And if they don't, I suppose I am too tired of getting ready for this show to really care?
"Anita" is made of cloth over wire armature, with head, arms and legs made of Creative Paperclay. This is a papier-mache type air drying clay. I LOVE this stuff. Her clothing is all handmade, much of it antique fabric and trims from items too fargone to salvage in their original condition. I never cut up historically significant or displayable garments or fabrics. If it's already falling apart or dismantled, I go for the gold. Her hat is made from antique fabric and trims as well as her parasol. Not having parasol skills, this one doesn't open. Her 'floor' is actually taken from the entry hall of her old home. Ashlar block pattern in faux marble. She represents the time period of 1885-1890.
I failed to get a full length shot of her, but that doesn't matter because I am a pretty lousy photographer and all my photos make my girls look like they are short legged when in fact they are not. She's holding a book, that represents her poetry. Really, I stole it from poor Alice Liddell and painted out the Alice In Wonderland title. Hadn't gotten 'round to 'recovering' the book for her at the time I took these pictures. I didn't feel like making another book. See....LAZY.