Saturday, August 9, 2014


The Imaginarium - Anthologies of an Art Doll, this is what I have been up to since July 16th. I had the opportunity to attend this fabulous Art Doll workshop over at Artful Gathering with instructor Mary Jane Chadbourne. This workshop has kept  me super busy along with my work, my shops, family and other commitments, but I wouldn't have missed a minute of it. There a couple more weeks of the workshop left  and it will end on August 26th.

I have to say this has been the best workshop I have ever attended. I have met so many sweet inspiring art friends and enjoyed the workshop with friends I already new and had the opportunity to see more of their work. Mary Jane is a super instructor, very talented and very easy to follow. If you haven't seen her art dolls, then you must journey on over to her Etsy shop, Desert Dream Studio and see a few that she has recently listed, but you will have to hurry, her dolls sell super fast!

I have always loved her work, and now that I am making these dolls myself, I have a much greater appreciation for the work and amount of time that goes into these creative creatures!  I have made some doll assemblages of my own in the past which is what inspired me to take Mary Jane's workshop. I am so glad that I did. all the dolls that have been created by different artists there have been so inspiring and I have learned so many new techniques and how to properly apply them. Mary Jane has been a great instructor and makes everything easy and fun. Through her inspiration and knowledge, I have completed these 7 dolls and before each one was completed, I was already dreaming up another one. 

 There are the first three dolls I completed. Each doll is made of wood and stands up to 13" tall (some are shorter) with base of 4" x 2.25" deep.

                                                 "We are each of us Angels" 

                                                             Back side
                                          "I dreamt I was a Soul"

                                                             DREAM MACHINE

                                                                   Back Side
                                           "Let us Dream of Evanescense 
                  And Linger in The Beautiful Foolishness of Things"


Not one of the dolls I made turned out the way I started with them. They all seem to take a personality all their own.

And here are the last four I completed. I probably would still be making them except I have run out of parts!

 By my fourth doll, I became a little braver in my assemblage and I thought this one needed a door on front since she had a cut out in the middle.

 When you open the door, you see the word "HEAVEN". One side of the door says: "Come In"
The other side of the door says: "Open to All". 

                   This is the back side of the doll, I love creating the backs as well as the fronts

 This is my favorite part of the doll, which I knew I had to have when I saw this little lantern at Michael's and it also came with a little battery pack, so there is no plug in required.

                                "WE WILL BE ALRIGHT"  IS Doll # 4

                  "ADVENTURE"  "UNTIE YOUR WINGS"    ....   is doll # 5

                                                                                         "FOREST FAIRY" my doll # 6

I sculpted this doll's face from clay, which was one of our lesson's in the workshop. Her branches that I added to her crown are also from paper clay.

 "She loved watching it. And Suddenly she knew some-thing. And it made her feel wonderful, about Life itself."
                                                                      "LOVE YOU MADLY"
                     (I loved using the vintage door knob and the ceramic doll hands)

                                          "COUNT THE HAPPIES"     

             For Doll #7 I decided on a CLOWN......      "LIFE IS GOOD" 

I was pretty happy with how her painted face turned out since I have never really painted a clown before.

 I did something a little different with this doll... for the back side, I created another doll, just a little different than the front side.  I used vintage monopoly playing pieces on her head and her juggling balls are copper wire and beads.

The last part of the workshop, I will be working on some Block Dolls and some Artist Trading Blocks. You will have to visit again to see what I learned to do with those.

If you have the opportunity next year to attend a workshop at Artful Gathering, doing something you love or trying your hand at something new, take the time for yourself and do it, I promise that you will be so glad that you did.

Stay Inspired!


  1. Oh, Kim, this is such a joy! I really gasped with each fresh image! Your imagination, creativity, eye for colour and sheer mastery of the art doll, leave me speechless! You are a true artist. You have flown on vivid wings and inspired me to fly too, which is what art is all about! Thank you and Thanks to Mary Jane too for all she has taught us and made possible! I too am so glad I took this course! I do hope we will stay friends. :) xxx

  2. Thank you Julie Ann, I agree, this has been the best workshop ever! I couldn't be happier that I took Mary Jane's workshop. Everyone's dolls have just been amazing. Such a fun class! Friends for sure!! 💗

  3. I was overwhelmed when I saw these dolls. They are simply incredible, and very inspirational. You have captured my imagination and I hope to make a few of these in the future. What lovely dolls you have created.

    1. Thank you so much, I have enjoyed making them and now I am totally addicted!

  4. Your dolls are awesome, you have made so many and all of them are beautiful. I did only buy 3 but want to make more.. This was a great class, and Mary Jane is an angel. Thank you for sharing :)

    1. Thank you, I am so happy I decided to take her class, and so happy to have met some new art friends as well! I can't wait to make more of them! Your work is beautiful as well. So many clever ideas in the workshop, it makes my head spin! After the class is over, if you make more dolls, I would love to see them!

  5. FABULOUS WORK!!!! absolutely love them... am also taking this class and am having a ball, Mary Jane is a fabulous teacher, love creating these little people...

    1. Thank you Bevlea! So nice to meet you and yes, this class has just been awesome and so inspirational. I plan on making more dolls even after the class is over and will share them here. I would love to see any you make as well even if the class is over! Thank you for stopping by and taking a peek! See you in class!

  6. your doll creations are wonderful.
    i recently (last year) started making art dolls but not really knowing what i was doing, mine come out more 'rustic' and not a finely finished as yours. but people seemed to love them and they sold, but i am very interested in learning new techniques.
    where is MaryJane's workshop held? (i live in northern california) i wonder if she has online classes?

    but, with all that said, these are wonderful, and i am inspired to make more.

    1. Thank you Rebeca and so happy you stopped by! All the classes at Artful Gathering are online classes, you should check them out next year and plan on taking one. They are so worth it!
      I made a few dolls on my own that sold but they weren't like these either. I also love the rustic look and the vintage look! With all the techniques I have learned, I am sure I will be making more dolls with a variety of looks! Do you have an Etsy shop or blog? I would love to see your dolls as well! I hope you will visit again, I will put all the dolls I make on my blog. Xx

  7. Thank you for sharing this look at your creations! I somehow missed them in the class. I love what you've done and I agree completely -- the class has just been outstanding. Love your site too and glad to have found you!

    1. Elizabeth, thank you for stopping by my blog to peek at my girls and for your kind words! Just love the class and it has been hard to keep up with all the great discussions , tips and doll creations! So nice to meet you too! Do you have a blog or etsy shop? See you in class! xx

  8. Kim what a beautiful post, I agree Mary Jane is an amazing teacher and has a way that makes everyone relax so the class is very welcoming and friendly. I have done three classes with Mary Jane and made friends with many Artist from around the world. Kim your dolls are all amazing no favorites love them all.
    Ann xoxox

    1. Thank you Ann, I am so taken by all the fabulous inspiration in that class, so glad I decided to treat myself to her class! I will be doing it again next year for sure! I hate that i missed her other classes! Let's keep up even after class is over! XX

  9. Kim you are amazing. LOVE all of these. Wow Wow Wow.


Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. You are a blessing to me!