sorry it's been a week since I've posted here, don't know where the time has gone! Thanks for all your sweet comments, it really means a lot hearing from you all :) I'm in the process of placing (well trying to place!) an order for a new order of mohairs. When it comes to deciding what to choose I'm hopeless! There is so much choice and it is all sooo lovely, I have so many ideas of bears swimming around in my head it's a job to narrow my choices down. Especially as mohair is an expensive luxurious fabric, I can't get too carried away!! Anyway, I think I'm nearly there and can't wait to get my order to start, mmmm some lovely colours and finishes. There are so many different finishes to mohair from stringy, sparse, semi sparse, straight, curly, wavey, distressed, tipped...... see my dilemmas ;) I tend to prefer the denser mohairs with some wave to them.
Wendster was so very kind with her comments about my bears and how I was an inspiration to her following my bear making dream (my gosh, you made me blush!). She asked me to explain how I create my 3-D creations, well this is my thought process a bit. When I very first started out bear making I bought a couple of really good books about design of bears as well as having lots of books about antique bears. I have spent many many many hours studying the looks of different bears both real and teddy. I do lots of sketching and have beary images always floating in my head (yeah I sound crazy don't I!). I love the kindness and soulfullness you see when you look into the eyes of real bears (not that I have ever been THAT close to look right into their eyes!!). These majestic wild animals have such a tenderness that I try to capture in my bears. I am not of course trying to re-create a realistic bear like some amazing artists do, I just take the essence of character and try to get this in their faces! I was sketching a grizzly bear the other day from a photo I have...
The design part takes practice and more practice, after a good few years of trials and errors (the errors from my early bear making days are in my craft room smiling down at me from a shelf, of course I would never call them errors to their beary faces!). My recent bears have got wider foreheads which I am drawn too from wild bears. As much as I love wild bears I love the sweet innocence and friendship of a teddy bear, so I try to combine both in my Bumpkin Bears.
I'm currently working on a commission for a set of 2 mini bears with their little black and white ponies! I'll try to explain the pony creation process soon.
Hugs, Catherine x