Resin and plastics…

I attended a resin/cold-enameling class at the City-Lit in London for two days as I would like to create my own jewelry at some point.

Since creating items for Clara the stop motion puppet, I’ve found that I rather enjoyed the process of creating molds and using latex. I wanted to try other mediums like resin (you don’t need to own a kiln for this technique which is a plus as they are expensive they need their own generators/electricity transformers – I don’t think my landlord would appreciate it either (renting in London is a pain!)

The resin comes in two parts – the resin itself and the hardener. You have to measure the two parts using a scale as the hardener is rather thicker  compared to the resin.

Resin FAIL! these were the bottom layers of resin and 3 other layers were to go on top once it had 'cured' but I'll have to start again now 🙁

I’ve tried creating my own molds and resin shapes at home on three occasions now… twice it has failed… grrrr

The first time I didn’t add enough hardener … the second time too much – I’m not sure how that works, why not cure if there was too much hardener??

oh well… I’ll have to try and clean up the resin out of the molds and start again – gooey resin is a nightmare to clean up (nail polish remover does help but it still takes a long time).

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Update on Clara Project

In a previous post I mentioned that my final year project for year 2 was going to be a stop motion sequence. (click here to see previous post)

Here are some images of Clara and the video of a short teaser clip.

You can visit Clara’s website at ‘Clara’s Animated World’

you will also find links to my blog documenting how Clara was made and Clara’s own blog which is her personal journey into asserting herself and making her own stop motion sequences, hopefully helping her solve personal issues and learn new skills.

All this is still very much in production and I have a long way to go – I will eventually be adding a comic strip (not sure if it’s from Clara’s personal view point or one that Clara actually makes herself!?!) and hopefully the full animated sequence will be done in the next 10 months, plus more useful links for anyone who wants to try this themselves.

Also, the website needs sorting – I want the comic strip segments on the page to zoom and shift to open up – rather than go to a new ‘page’ (it’s a flash website), also the blank segment will be where Clara’s comic strip will go (I don’t have a suitable image for that yet). plus sounds… and how to add video content that doesn’t show a youtube or vimeo logo or if embedding, how to get it to show a decent resolution/quality as it’s rather poor at the moment… but you can see the video below which is from youtube in the meantime!

Clara - stop motion puppet
a pre-production shot of Clara in a 'dramatic' pose!

I just hope this comes to London…

The London MOMA closed in 1999 so I hope that there will be another venue or the BFI hosts a UK version of Tim Burton’s current Exhibition that is running at MOMA in New York.

(link to an unofficial website that shows London MOMA’s exhibitions – it has a terrible design but shows some interesting images that I remember viewing back in the early 90’s!)

click to view Tim Burton Interactive for MOMA Exhibition.


‘Step into Tim Burton’s MOMA exhibition, courtesy of Big Spaceship.

Big Spaceship created this website for Tim Burton’s retrospective at the MOMA. The site offers a peek at Burton’s work throughout the various stages of his career as well as behind-the-scenes footage on how the exhibit came together.’

(quote and link from

The Last of Its Kind

Posted by Jenny He, Curatorial Assistant, Film

MOMA inside/out page featuring Jenny He, MOMA’s curatorial Assistant talking about the exhibition and the time she went to Tim Burton’s London Studio to discuss his images to show in the exhibition (also shows an image of his studio!) (click the title to see the full story)

Click here tofind downloads, forums and news from the Tim Burton Collective website: Tim Burton Collection website

Ravelry strangeness…

A project set by Sithel on Ravelry (the online community of yarn artist!)

This is for the Silly String Group where one person creates either the top or bottom (or side/insides?) of a creature and then posts it off via Sithel to someone else who then completes the creature!

I’ve restarted it in the Rowan Bamboo tape as I really like the rather large and oddly shaped (sort of) pom pom that goes on the end – I’m hoping it will all blend well… plus I still have the clay mask part to do… you just can’t help coming up with the whole creature and then you want the other person to finish it with that in mind lol.

I’ve come up with several strange creatures for this project and I would love to start them all now! I was thinking of creating patterns for my Voodoo and Norbert creatures (see below) but as usual I’m avoiding anything difficult and going for the fun bit… hoorah (I usually get it the other way round!)

It looks like  a turnip!!!! I also don’t like the way that the stuffing can be seen through the stitches – I used a small hook in the attempt to avoid this… I am thinking of adding a small balaclava to the head (the Triples don’t like being recognised when out doors and they get cold due to bad circulation! ;-P) (Character traits do raise themselves when rationalising weird things!)

I made a plaster cast mold for the eyemask which will be made out of latex so that it curves around the head easily.

I’m actually wondering if I should make one of the other ideas and send that off to the group? I really would like to complete this one rather than hand it over to somebody else… I was thinking of using dry felt for the bodies and small metal rings for the necks.

It’s working name is Tribbles… they are like conjoined triplets (3 bodies, 1 head… sort of 3 eyes… but who knows as the mask could be just to confuse people!!).

update… not quite finished

what I've got so far... the top image is the wire being covered in wadding which is then stuffed into the curved part of the head - it will help hold the 'bend' in the ... er... thing on the head!
completed head with neck tubes - latex mask

This will be posted off to the person who will add a body or anything else they can think off – it will be interesting to see what I receive in return and the finished critter!

UPDATE: Sithel’s half and my completed half!

This is what I received in the post: Sithel’s segment that I will add to.

Sithel's half which was sent to me to finish into some kind of creature!

And this is what I did:

Previous Ravelry swop Projects:

Yellowjacket drew a couple of creatures (sketch in the middle of the below image and I then created the actual creature - 'Norbert' was then sent to YellowJacket)

The next swop with with a voodoo theme – we were partnered with someone else who was to let us know what power the doll was to have and then we send the finished item to them – Voodoo is not necessarily negative it depends on what you want the doll to do – this was for another Ravelry member, Aerulan, who wanted something to help her garden. So this doll will suck the negative elements that might destroy a garden. Unfortunately, I never received my voodoo doll which was to help my block on drawing 🙁 but I am in the process of re-making this one as I would like to sell the pattern via Ravelry!)

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Stop Motion – Clara Project Proposal for Term 3 (year 2)

In the first term of the second year we had to prepare a project proposal which will be created in the last term of year 2.

I decided I wanted to create a stop motion animation using a puppet that I had started to create.

This first puppet was rather awful so as I was now serious in creating an animation with this puppet I decided to remake the whole thing using a ball & socket jointed armature.

I’ve been keeping a blog on the process which will eventually be attached to it’s own website – click Clara’s Animated World to visit my blog.

As Clara thinks she is a live (!?!) she has also started her own blog which you can find here: Clara’s Blog – all photographs by Lenny Carter –

How Digital Media can aid self-expression

Integrative Project Proposal by Lenny Carter


In using Digital Media as a means of self-expression will raise awareness of how a person can bring their dreams and personal thoughts into reality. This can be educational as well as a possible aid to personal development. The process of creating such work can create skills that could be used in the future, for example: better job prospects and career choices. This could also bring a greater self-awareness towards personal goals, and desires.

Whilst Digital Media cannot itself solve the issue of stress or self-fulfillment of dreams etc, but it can be used as a tool, just like pens, paints and music can help towards stress relief and this has become much more accessible to people since Digital software and computer equipment has become less expensive especially to the young or who have limited budgets.


The project will consist of a stop motion animated film that features a young teenager character that shows how she escapes from her problems (or the attempt to understand and reconcile the effects of them) by using a personal item (a toy that becomes her friend and mentor) by dreaming imaginative scenarios.  The characters will be seen in ‘real life’ and a partial sequence of her dream sequence. It will also have the main character re-create this dream world using digital media.  The viewer of the animation will see the character teach her-self new skills, and could then try the same techniques themselves. The results of the animated film created by the character can be posted onto a social website, like, Facebook, MySpace or flickr etc.

This project is educational in the development of new skills of Digital Media tools and also interplays with Art Therapy. John Harley and Kelly McWilliam’s book, Story Circle: Digital Storytelling Around the World, write about how ‘people are taught to use digital media to create short audio-video stories, usually about their own lives. The idea is that this puts the universal human delight in narrative and self-expression into the hands of everyone’, again regardless of budget and skills this is a possibility in today’s technological environment.

Cheaper computers or using computer at libraries (for free) means that creating self-expression art works with digital media is now available to a lot of people. Most computers now come with a web camera, and software can be downloaded for free (especially open source software, i.e.: Gimp is a well known free alternative to Adobe PhotoShop Photo Editing Suite).

Objectives and Research Methodology

  • Storyboarding of animated sequence.
  • Primary Research and secondary research will feature questionnaires on Facebook to the general public and a poll on Deviant Arts aimed at similar types of self-expressionist work using Digital Media software and equipment. Relevant books and Magazines on the subject will also be researched.
  • Research of costs of making an animated film (free versions of software, equipment etc) analysing and researching the techniques of stop motion and animation, including timing and to convincingly move a wired armature, building props and sets, sound techniques, storyboarding, and how to create mood and atmosphere with software and positioning of props and lights etc.
  • Website Design – Platform creation for Animated Film. The site will contain links to useful sites that will aid viewers to make their own animated, alternative realities themselves and to stress the importance of accessibility and that this type of project can be created in the viewers home – specialist equipment or skills is not necessarily needed to create their own self-expressed ideas in animation.
  • Art therapy similar organisations on how self-expression can deal with stress and personal development? Also to research similar websites that use Art therapy to aid self expression in the creative arts and to whether there are any current sites that cover these areas using stop motion animation.

Resources for Project

This project will be completed in a home environment using an iMac, Digital SLR (entry level), or Camcorder (depending on research and software used), and the website will stress the aspect.

The film will feature a homemade stop motion character that is glued and sewn (It will contain a wired body and the main character will feature a ball and socket joined doll (these are now within the amateurs budget – the wired version is the cheapest and more accessible type to use for those on a very limited budget), both options will be used and information given on ease of use.

Software which will either be PhotoShop, After Effects, Final Cut Pro, SoundBooth, and a stop motion software package (i.e.: iStopMotionPro), PC or Mac.

Free options will be featured on the website so that viewers to the site can see that stop motion is accessible to the young and those who do not have the funds to explore what used to be a specialist or professionals hobby. Free options to include are Gimp (similar to Photoshop), Audacity (sound), and Window’s moviemaker or iMovie on a Mac.

just baked face on the scanner.

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Artist Book Structures, (elective)

For my BA course 2nd year elective I chose Artist Book Structures as I love books in their entirety – binding, covers, images, text.
Try searching for such keywords as: Artist Books, Book Binding, Creative Books, (add more)

Artists Book Structure
(Elective for 2nd Year)

Elements of Architecture

Buildings contain people… these people have thoughts and dreams within them.
Books are also containers of people’s thoughts and dreams.
People’s tongues are devices of communication, they can tell others about their Ideas, dreams and desires,
Other people read these dreams and learn to create things… like buildings!

The Book of Tongues:

The structure I decided to make is sculptural in its form – a modernist design similar to the lines of the Guggenheim Museum in Spain and the post modernist Lloyds Building in London.

The ‘Book of Tongues’ features the elements of what a tongue can do (Obviously more could be added but this particular design limits this to 6).

The protective case is a simplistic shape that protects and closes on the tongues, the viewer will have no clue of what’s in side, when the lid is lifted the viewer is surprised by what they find. On top of the recess in the case a small booklet sits (not pictured) this has the rational written on the same type of paper as the tongues and has a textured cover with holes cut through – will add images of this once I have received back the object from grading).

Which is six tongues connected to arc shaped holders – The Book of Tongues used similar techniques to Pop-up, but they are static rather than open and shut with the closing of the box.

It is possible to make these holders swivel round like a spiral staircase and the Tongues could fan out rather than lift, another version test was created using wire embedded into the tongues so that they could be lifted and twisted… with the hope to enable ‘tongue twisted’ moments!

tags for portfolio:

Handmade tags for project folder

(examples of other structures made in class)


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