I finished painting the little dogs that will be used to demonstrate various techniques in my new book, and I think they came out rather nice. As you’ll see in the video, I’m trying to keep the painting as simple as possible. The sculptures are so small that you can get away with very basic painting methods. No magnifying glass for me!
I’m in the final stretch of writing the book. All the patterns are done. The painting chapter is the only one left to write, and I’ll start on it this afternoon. Then it’s time to find the typos, and I’m done.
I noticed something interesting when I was building the sample dogs for the book. Each time I made another little dog, the nose would be a little big bigger, and the dog was less “realistic.” I spent less time worrying about “getting it right,” and more time playing with the character, the expression, and the posture. You can see the progression by looking at the first one I made, the Irish Setter (standing elegantly in her fine feathered coat) and then looking at the terrier that I made using the Fox Terrier pattern, but who ended up being a mutt because I couldn’t resist adding that mustache!
This book is going to be different from the other ones I’ve written, because the emphasis is on techniques that can be used for a wide variety of breeds, instead of writing a separate chapter with detailed instructions for each individual breed, the way I’ve done it in previous books. That way, I have space for more patterns while using fewer pages, which will let me charge less for the book.
My inspiration for doing it this way came from a book of patterns for carving dogs that I found in our local library. I can’t include as many patterns as the author of that book because I include way more pages of instruction — but I liked the basic idea. By simplifying the process and keeping the price down, I’m hoping more people will be attracted to paper mache as an art form. A lot of people still think it’s all about slapping paper strips on a balloon!
I could use some help finding a good title for the book. I wanted to call it Patterns for 25 Tiny Paper Mache Dogs, but when I tell people what the title is, they think that all the patterns are for toy dogs, like Chihuahuas and Yorkies (tiny dogs, instead of tiny sculptures). How can I word it so it won’t be misunderstood? I want people to know the sculptures are small, but there are patterns for both big and little breeds. And I do need to use the words “paper mache dogs,” in that order, so Amazon.com’s search engine will know what the book is about — but that’s the only part that’s set in stone. Ideas?