May 8, 2014

What I am up to - New Mini Assignment for May MATS Bootcamp

Lilla Rogers MATS Bootcamp

After no boot camp in April ( which worked out perfectly for me since the kids have been on Easter school break ) the new mini assignment came out on Monday. 
During April we were all guessing what the new topic would be but no one got it 100% correct…but some were close.
It is drawing faces and people…to be honest, something I try to avoid since I was studying, remembering the life drawing and fashion illustration classes. I decided it was not my cup of tea…and here we go. 

Lilla gave us pictures from her vintage dolls she is collecting and we are supposed to draw them. I made it an exercise for me to loosen up a bit and tried to do the sketches quick. I doodled a few more faces but felt I am not warming up to it. So I kept thinking vintage dolls - my grand mother was collecting antique dolls, but I still did not feel the connection to draw them. I like wooden dolls, like marionettes and Matryoshkas from Russia. Searching for them on the internet I came across vintage Kokeshi dolls from Japan and I fell in love with them immediately. They are so beautiful with pretty Japanese patterns on them or small traditional paintings - really lovely and with lots of details to discover.

Traditional Kokeshi dolls ( source )

The Kokeshi dolls are part of Japanese folklore and today, very popular with tourists. They are mainly carved out of cherry or maple wood with a simple trunk and an enlarged head. Its origin is dated back to the Edo period ( 1603-1867 ) in the Tohoku region of northern Japan. The traditional Kokeshi doll's shapes and patterns are particular to a certain area and are classified under eleven types ( source Wikipedia ). The area is attracting lots of tourists thanks to the hot springs and craftsmen started making Kokeshi dolls to sell to the tourists. Some belief they are symbols to wish children good health so they became typical gifts for birthdays or newborns.

Vintage Kokeshi dolls ( source )

More shapes of Kakeshi dolls ( source )

And here is my start to draw Kokeshi dolls…not much yet but I will keep drawing - it is so much fun !

copyright©Pattern Jots by Maike Thoma 2014
My first Kokeshi sketches copyright©Pattern Jots by Maike Thoma 2014

I am looking forward to receive the main assignment next Monday - what product will Lilla choose ? You will find out soon !

Happy Thursday !

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