SELF-PORTRAIT | This was completed for my senior capstone project at St. Olaf College. 

As a studio art major pursuing graphic design, I find myself constantly behind the computer screen. During my sophomore year I discovered wooden spoon carving, and found that using my hands to create something more tangible is both meditative and rewarding. Likewise, I have gravitated towards claymation since I was little, watching stop-motion animation programs like “Wallace & Gromit”. I love the whimsicality of the medium along with the patience and detail put into the technique, and how the simple act of working with your hands can bring something to life. Excited and inspired to use my hands to explore on a somewhat new territory for my senior show, I created three-dimensional vignettes, or scenes representational of my year abroad in Denmark featuring paper mache versions of myself.

Rather than creating an emphasis on moments of intimacy I developed with new friends, my host family, and Denmark as a whole, each scene reflects a moment of solitude, whether it be as mundane as waiting for the train and checking on the sheep in my host family’s back yard, or polar plunging in the dead of winter. When peeking into each boxed scene, I hope the viewer can relate to the solemn, yet beautiful moments of solitude, but also appreciate some of the handcrafted detail and layers in the works. Beneath each figure is a wire armature, layered with paper mache, and clothed in fabric that is coated in wax, which created additional durability, while also helped to create a more muted aesthetic.

 

Practice pants...still need to perfect my sewing skills, HA! 

Practice pants...still need to perfect my sewing skills, HA! 

Playing around with different options for the head. This one's paper mache. 

Playing around with different options for the head. This one's paper mache. 

I'm using tin foil as the base of my clay head to avoid explosion in the oven and to keep it light. 

I'm using tin foil as the base of my clay head to avoid explosion in the oven and to keep it light. 

I'm using Super Sculpey here. Once it's baked, I can "perfect" it by sanding it down with sandpaper, but part of me wants to keep the fingerprints. 

I'm using Super Sculpey here. Once it's baked, I can "perfect" it by sanding it down with sandpaper, but part of me wants to keep the fingerprints. 

Playing around with other face shapes :) 

Playing around with other face shapes :)