Made by hands, expressed from the heart.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Dr. Who themed gifts.

My little friend Mikey loves Dr. Who, so for Christmas I wanted to make something related to the theme for him.

I was looking for ideas, until I came across the model of the T.A.R.D.I.S. (Time And Relative Dimension In Space) in paper to print. It came from and I am so thankful because it is so easy to make and beautiful. I have a link here: PrintTardis.
I printed in regular paper, but I glued to cardboard to make it sturdier. Then I cut it.
I left the bottom open to put chocolate inside and glued the sides.
To make brighter and shimmery, I used my pearl clear spray and let dry for a few hours.
After dry, I could put a few pieces of candy inside.

But then my son mentioned the Daleks, Dr. Who's enemies.
He found them to print and they are from and the links are here: Dalek1, Dalek2 and Dalek3.
They were a little harder to cut and glue because of the small arms and eye pieces.
But I was able to finish them and spray with the same clear, shimmery spray.
I thought it was cool because he can play with them and use as tree decoration.
Or he can decorate his room.
I hope he likes his gift.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Taiko Book

For the past four years my family and I have been taken taiko (Japanese drums) lessons every Sunday. And this hobby started to grow as we learned more about the history, got involved with performances, festivals, meetings and more classes that gave us the opportunity to meet great people here in the US and overseas.
My husband started making taikos on his spare time and when we can, or people want to listen to us, we play.

And recently we were asked to play at a library event, mostly for kids. They probably never heard of Taiko, so I decided to make some illustrations to explain a little bit about it. And using my husband's suggestion, I made them in the form of a book.
I was never been able to paint and never had training for that, but my son brought a painting from his middle school, and I thought I could use the same technique.
I got som foam board from Michaels and started to draw waht I had in mind.

I did a lot of research before, and in this illustration I wanted to explain that taikos were used in battlefields. To use for communication and give orders and signals to their troops. Also to intimidate the enemy and encourage their warriors.
I painted some of the piece, but I wasn't happy with the way it looked.
I repainted the other half of the board with a different reference, that made me much happier.

The other page of the book I made a rice field. I read that rice was the base of the economy in Japan for a long time, so it was important to have a successful harvest.

For that they would play taiko to scare the evil spirits, and also scare away the plagues and insects from the crops.
Also to show that with the sound of the drums, they would imitate the sound of thunder to wake up Raijin, the God of Thunder. To send thunder and rain.
The last page of the book I show how taikos are used in festivals and celebrations until the present day.

How families go out together to celebrate the same ways their ancestors did.

This way they have the opportunity to connect with community and to keep the Japanese culture alive.

The cover of the book has to do with the name of our group, Umi Sora, that means The Sea and Sky.

I attached all the painted foam boards using a big ribbon and glue.
The kids at the library enjoyed the book, and I think they got a better idea of what we were doing and where the drums came from.
It was three weeks of paint all over the house, but I really enjoyed making these illustration.
And I plan to add more pages.
The little flying fish is a reference to us. We feel that we were born at the bottom of the ocean, had to swim all the all to the top, against current and predators. And now we reached the surface, we are learning how to fly. Hopefully we will fly high.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Box of Noodles Costume.

My son wants to stick with the food theme for Halloween, this time we decided to make noodles.
I started making the box using white cardboard.
Painting the sign in front of the box.
Then glued all the parts together. This was my first attempt to put all the parts together, with the yarn on top for the noodles. Until I realized the cardboard was too flimzy and it was falling apart.
So I took the yarn out and had to reinforce the four sides of the box with foam board to make it sturdy. And closed with another piece of foam board on top to hold the "noodles".
To make more realistic, I cut white cardboard to make the flaps that suppose to close the box.
I folded some leftover cardboard in the shape of chopsticks.
Then covered with cardstock paper, with the color close to wood color .
And this is how I attached the chopsticks, using tape on the top board.
Then it was time to place the yarn to make the noodles. This time I decided first to place white piper cleaners and stick with tape around the top board.
This way I was able to run the yarn around the pipe cleaners and look more realistic.
And in the end I bent the piper cleaners and curled inwards to hold the yarn in place.
To add more color I made some vegetables and a shrimp using felt.
I placed a strap inside so he can wear it hanging from his shoulders.
And it is ready to be used.

It will be fun to walk around in the street like this.