Category Archives: art dolls

Flight Unfolding

doll as Spring acThe dolls are back! They wax and wane in my life and I’m enjoying their reemergence in my art. The recent ones are part of my ongoing ‘Treasure Keeper Series’ which are about sorting though my memories and then my feelings about the memories. I made a companion piece for this doll and not until this morning did I realize I had created Spring and Autumn. There’s more to explore with theses two latest dolls (paintings to create) but for now here’s where I’m at; one doll complete, the other 99% done and two small paintings to go.

PS: Update. These figures are fluid in nature. The idea of spring and autumn wasn’t quite accurate. Rather it is winged and rooted that is the more accurate sentiment behind the two companion pieces.

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Posted by on November 27, 2015 in art dolls, fibre art, mixed media


Doll Art and Companion Piece

2 Joy A. Kirkwood-Woven In-8X4X4-mixed media fibre artNight Garden acrylic painting-printmakingA recently finished fibre art doll work called “Woven In’ led me to create a companion painting. I started by projecting the shadow of the fibre art piece onto a canvas and tracing the image. Then I worked into the painting intuitively to see what would emerge. The finished painting is called “Night Garden” and was a delight and a surprise to me! Both pieces are my thoughts and feelings about my place in a family that is both blessed and burdened by loved ones struggling with a mental disorder. Blessing because they are two of the most gentle, sensitive, interesting people I know and they are a gift in my life. Conversations with them are like spending time in a night garden where the beauty is subtle and life here is more about feeling than appearances.

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Posted by on September 21, 2015 in acrylics, art dolls, fibre art, mixed media


Velveteen Rabbit

Black Rabbit signedBlack Rabbit portraitAs a change of pace this Christmas one of my homemade gifts for someone dear to me was a toy rabbit that stands about 18″ tall (to tip of ears). Not exactly “The” Velveteen Rabbit (which would be much smaller and a different colour) but a variation on the idea.

Its been a long time since I made a toy and I really enjoyed it. Used material from a black plush zipper jacket that had seen better days. Various scraps of suede I had on hand worked well for eyes, nose, and bow. It was a joy to work on. I like the idea of recycling, re-purposing material to use for making a gift and have a few other toy ideas in mind to make for the new year.

Wishing a Happy, Creative New Year to everyone!

“Once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.” – quote by the skin horse from the book “The Velveteen Rabbit” by Margery Williams, 1922

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Posted by on December 29, 2014 in art dolls, fibre art, miscellaneous, mixed media, photographs


Pincushions Extraordinaire

Pinchushion ladiesHere are the rest of the pin cushion ladies from the Positively Petite show. Each has their own personality; one is about gardening, another an artist, and yet another Mother Christmas. Their personalities emerged from the designs and colours of the materials I was using.

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Posted by on November 17, 2014 in art dolls, fibre art, publicity


Positively Petite

Pincushion Person PP2 Place des Arts has their annual Christmas art show up and this year I created my wee doll figures to double as small pin cushions. They stand about 5″ high. This little one is one of six; all very different. I rather like how they turned out and am finding they make for a nice little companion when sewing. The art show is up at Place des Arts in Coquitlam until December 20, 2014.

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Posted by on November 14, 2014 in art dolls, fibre art, mixed media, publicity


Puppet People Face

Puppet FaceI have been away from my computer. Recently returned from a trip to Calgary where I taught curriculum integrated arts projects with kindergarten and grades 1/2. I’ve worked with the school before, always enjoy my time there, and this time was no exception. One of the projects was creating ‘puppet people’ (stick puppets with movable beaded arms) with the youngest ones. This is the face from my example (I avoid sharing children’s work on line). It’s amazing what you can accomplish with a piece of cardboard, a stick, a bit of foam, a few markers, chalk  pastels, and a lot of creativity.Puppet in Process

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Posted by on March 24, 2014 in art dolls, miscellaneous, mixed media


Balancing Jester

balancing jester with blue sky backgroundMy work is small scale and because I envision  my work in a wall niche I am trying a new presentation model for an upcoming art show; a base/background to hold the work temporarily. I stenciled in spirals on my base and background which is a subtle, textural effect that I like. Shadows on the background may add to the work as well. Something to think about.

My last attempt at creating ‘voice’ for my small stature work was to put the art in frames to hang on the wall (creating a niche effect) but then they were put in a case anyway and now the figures slant backward at an awkward angle… and the tactility is lost because they are behind glass. Sigh.

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Posted by on March 7, 2014 in art dolls, fibre art