The butterfly effect

Some say that inspiration cannot be beckoned, it’s sacred and you have to wait for it come to you, and always ready to read the subtle signs that will tell you when it arrives. I have proof of that now.

I had been totally dry of ideas and I had this girl on my desk, waiting for inspiration to arrive, but to no avail. I kept on sketching on her, but none of my ideas really convinced me.

My last sketch turned out to be some kind of wings on her back, maybe butterfly wings, but I was not really sure what I wanted her to be.

I got frustrated, so I got up from my table and got out of the studio earlier than usual to pick up my kids from school. Maybe a walk could help me gather my ideas.

And just like that, I found it, right on my doorstep. It was a beautiful butterfly, flapping it’s wings on the sidewalk. It looked like it was hurt and trying to fly again but was not succeeding.

I thought about it and I carefully picked it up and took it inside. Maybe she just needed some water and food and she will be ready to fly again.

I put it in a box so it would not get hurt with a little sugary water in a bottle cap, and set out to pick up my kids from school.

I showed the butterfly to my kids and they took turns looking after it, they love animals and they were fascinated with it. My son took his art supplies and started sketching it, and my Daughter took a magnifying glass to study it while it was in the box.

What they didn’t know, and I really had no heart to tell them, was that the butterfly was not doing that good. It looked like it was her last day.

Next day I went to the box to see how it was doing, and as I expected, it didn’t make it.

And it got me thinking, it was alive one moment and the next, it was gone. Poof, just like that. After that, a tidal wave of thoughts and emotions flashed trough and I knew what to do.

I did art. It’s the best way I have to explain all my emotions and ideas and pour them out to the world. I painted the same butterfly wings on the girl I was working with, and I knew it was the right thing for her.

I had been depressed lately, with this feeling of uncertainty about my future as an artist and wondering if I really should continue this path or not.

After seeing this fragile creature hang on and bringing beauty to the world until it’s very last day, I knew I could not give up.

I painted that uncertainty I was feeling on the girl’s face. She is pondering about the future and knows she is fragile, but she is also beautiful.

She stands strong, because she knows that while she exists, there are things to do, places to explore,  art to make.

even if you did not know her story, she is still a powerful image. I love the way she is standing, ready to take flight and explore the world.

and now that you know her back story, I think it becomes a much more intimate image. One that speaks of my hidden fears and how I overcome them day by day.

And of course, you know me. Once I start, I cannot stop, so I kept on painting all my feeling and emotions onto canvas until I ended up with a beautiful series of new paintings.

Some of them have my recurring themes, like the obsession I have for twins. You know, two minds, one body. I find the idea so fascinating.


I love the face on this girl, defiant yet gentle and sweet. I like to think that she is my self portrait.

Then I was thinking of the blue fairy from Pinocchio and the movie AI, and the beautiful butterflies I saw in Costa Rica, and I made a blue butterfly.

And last, a girl with a chrysalis on her back. She is waiting for the change that will come. She is not sure when or where it will happen, but she knows it will be one day. It’s a matter of waiting.This was a very emotional series for me, finding that butterfly really got me thinking if this was just a strange coincidence, or if there’s something looking after me and sending subtle messages and letting me know I should keep on making the world a beautiful place.

What do you think? Let me know on the comments section!

 

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Out with the creep, in with the cute!

Working with the Drawlloween challenge has been A LOT of fun. I got to experiment with new ideas and themes, and my ghoul even got me on the creature feature for that day, as well as the WHAT IN THE WORLD IS SHE DOING???? section of a lot of people, and got everyone wondering where my art is going.

And you know… I don’t know! I have a dark side that I’m starting to explore with new materials, techniques and new ideas… But I can only draw with a pencil, a brush and one color for so long.

So, I got my colorful watercolors out of the box, and started out with my usual style for the last Halloween stretch before I put Darknita back to sleep in her coffin for the year.

And here they are! Silly and whimsical creatures of the night with beautiful eyes, sorrowful expressions and the tiniest hint of that little something that makes them so special.

There’s a couple of silly pumpkins and a jack-o-lantern dolltwo vampires, the cutest grim reaper and a ghosta witch and twins to round things up. I even made a girl with a red sailboat, just for the fun of it!

We’re very close to Halloween, but there’s still time to adopt them. Just scroll down to see them, or visit the Darknita section on my shop.

I will make sure the bats of Halloween carry them in a rush to you so you can display them in your favorite corners on the greatest holiday of the year!

What do you think of my latest series? And of my creepy stuff? Let me know on an email, or a comment on my blog!

Creepy Twins Danita Watercolor Painting Halloween Redrum Sisters Girls Danita Watercolor Red Sailboat Sail Ocean Boat Girl Danita Self Portrait Sea Sailing Ghost Ectoplasm Danita Art Watercolor Mixed Media Girl Blonde Halloween Night Creature Surreal Surrealist Danita Pumpkin jack-o-lantern doll toy art doll Danita Watercolor original vampire monter Halloween creature art illustration Danita Watercolor original vampire monter Halloween creature art illustration Witch Danita Watercolor Original Painting Blue jack-o-lantern pumpkin jack-o-lantern pumpkin original watercolor ACEO Card Danita Monster Halloween jack-o-lantern pumpkin original watercolor ACEO Card Danita Monster Halloween Grim reaper Danita Watercolor death skeleton bones muerte Halloween creature night fear

Met the spooky spool doll family!

It’s this time of the year again. I am in Halloween mode again and after the success I had with my paper clay art dolls (Thank you, they are almost sold out!!) I decided to make something else.

I found these wooden vintage thread spools I got from my grandmother and thrifty stores and set out to make a new set of Kokeshi art dolls.

I started out choosing the best spools, and then I glued wooden heads to them. I like how they look with their huge heads and their whimsical air.

Then, I sketch out who will they be with pencil and wait for the glue to dry.

And while they are drying, it’s time to try out different outfits! That’s a very fun part! Paper hats, vintage fabrics, crepe paper, tinsel and what not I find in the studio.

This year, I upped my game with them. Their faces are not only hand painted, but also carved out with fire. Each doll has a custom face I drew, burnt and painted to make each other very special.

Then, cones the painting. Following the lines I used to draw the faces, I paint each one them. very carefully with my fine brushes and artist’s paints, each doll has a very special personality.

Then, the dressing! Yay! Each doll has their own outfit designed according to their personality. Some are whimsical, some spooky, and all of them are made with lots of Love.

The final details, their paper hats. And now they are off to their official photoshoot before they are ready to be adopted.

Do you like them? I do! And looking how humble materials like vintage spool threads, wood spheres, little pompoms, paint and collage paper become art dolls makes me very happy.

Now, meet the entire family on my online gallery and art shop, danitaart.com

Happy Halloween!

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It’s all about Frida!

Danita handmade Kokeshi Art Doll Kawaii Frida Kahlo Diego Rivera

I was reorganizing the studio looking for materials to start making new art dolls, and then I found a box full of kokeshi doll bodies I forgot about. So, what did I do? Fridas!

I made a pair of super cute kokeshi dolls as Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, the famous artistic couple. Frida is a source of inspiration for me, and since I recently visited their homes in Mexico city, a homage to them was in order.

The original set sold immediately, and I got requests for more sets of these adorable handmade kokeshi art dolls. So, here they are. I still have a few unpainted bodies to share with you.Danita Art Handmade Kokeshi Kawaii Art Dolls Frida Kahlo Diego RiveraLet’s go from unfinished bodies to a beautiful set of hand painted kokeshi art dolls, customized with your favorite colors to match your personality and decoration. What do you say? Will you get a set for you?

But I did not stop there… and I really don’t think I can make them any smaller than this.

In the box I found the original kokeshi bodies I found a few sets of tiny kokeshi doll bodies! I was on a roll and I took my finest brushes to make a few sets of micro Frida and Diego sets.

They measure just a little less than one inch tall (2.5cm), and they are adorable! If you like tiny things (I do!) you are going to love them… just see how huge a regular pencil looks next to them. It looks like I have a giant pencil laying around the studio.

The sets are only $35.00 each and I only have 4 of them. If you are interested, better head to my shop and choose your favorite!

Danita Art Frida Kahlo mixed media painting blue house pop surrealist

I also made a painting too! A commissioned Frida with a house in her hands.

I had this commission almost finished when I made the dolls, so it felt like cheating when I added it to the newsletter… but then she is so beautiful it’s hard to resist not sharing her, right?

She is available as a signed paper print and mounted wood blocks here.

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The music lover

My love for music brought me to create this art doll. Paula loves music, and she has hundreds of records that she plays in her vintage gramophone.

Her face is sculpted by hand in paper clay, then painted with mixed media techniques to give her glass eyes a lovely and melancholic expression that has little bit of Danita’s soul in it.

Her hair is made with dyed wool, braided and styled just for her. Her clothes are also hand made, with little pockets in her dress where she can put her hands if she gets cold.

And then, last but not least, her gramophone! It’s totally hand made, and it plays “Memories” when you turn the crank. It’s so lovely!

She is waiting to go home with you and then share her vintage vinyl records with you in a rainy afternoon.

 

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All about little red riding hood

Danita Art Doll WIP Work in progress art doll paper clay head faceYou already know what happens when I get obsessed with a theme, right? I will not stop until I am utterly and completely satisfied with exploring every option and technique about it.

This past days my obsession has taken me to work with Little red riding hood, and I have been watercolor paintings, paper dolls, classes, and now, an art doll.

Little red riding hood art doll handmade paper clay Danita ArtWorking with her all night, I just had to add her to my ever growing collection of art dolls. Each one of them holds a little piece of my soul, and I just love making them. Now, Little red riding hood is looking for a home! Go and see more of her on my online shop!

MEET LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD

Buy maybe a doll is not what you were looking for? How about an original painting inspired by little red riding hood? I have one for you!

Danita watercolor little red riding hood original painting

I made here while I was in the forest last month, filming my latest online tutorial “Sketching in the woods” where I teach you how to paint a little red riding hood watercolor portrait just like this one.

SEE THE WATERCOLOR PAINTING

 

SIGN UP FOR THE PAINTING CLASS

And then, last, but not least… A little red riding hood paper doll! I have been working on this original paintings turned into poseable dolls.Poesable art doll template DIY paper crafts project by DanitaNow you can create your own with my downloadable pattern. It’s ready to be printed, colored and assembled so you can have you very own Danita Paper doll.

GET A DOWNLOADABLE DOLL PATTERN

I hope you liked what I have been doing with little red riding hood. Let me know in the comments section what you think and which one of the little red riding hood girls is your favorite!

Hand painted watercolor art dolls by Danita

Since I was child I have been obsessed with dolls. Paper dolls that you could cut and then set and dress in a million ways. I would take old JC Penney catalogs an cut the dresses for my dolls.

Now that I am older (And supposedly, wiser… ) that obsession was going to wane so I could concentrate on adult things like making a living and paying taxes.

SEE THE COMPLETE PAPER DOLL COLLECTION

So, one day a few weeks ago, I took my pencil and proceeded to draw a face on one of my favorite watercolor papers. I had the intention to start a new painting. Honest.

Then it hit me like a ton of bricks. All those childhood memories came rushing back and I changed course. I was going to make a paper doll.

I laid out the initial drawings and sketches and decided they were going to be cut-out, dress-up dolls like the ones I used to play with when I was a child.

After the first inking, I was hooked. My family knew I was up to something, and when they saw me grinning after I walked out to the studio, they knew it was going to be one of those weeks.

One of those weeks when I disappear from reality and hide in my studio, and I do not talk to anyone. Or go out. Or eat. Or Sleep. I’m in one of my art attacks.

The dolls were all inked up and now it’s time to paint them. So I got my watercolors and started to paint each one of them. They are unique and each one has their personality, so they deserve to have unique and one of a kind outfits.

See what I mean? Alice in wonderland even has her own bottle of Drink Me, An Eat Me cookie and a white rabbit to hop along with her down the rabbit hole.

Then it’s time to cut each piece by hand, and then start assembling them. This is kind of delicate because I have to make sure that each piece fits as expected, and some adjustments are required. So you have to be careful with your scissors.

Here’s one of the dolls with all her pieces put together, ready to be assembled. It’s not fun to see dismembered dolls all over my studio tables, and then I have to make sure I did not miss a limb!

Some magic and lots of work and sleepless nights, they are ready for the world! Each doll is articulated and can be posed any way you want.

I even had a piece of wood painted with chalkboard paint so I could play with them! They are a lot of fun! You can draw whatever scenario you want on the chalkboard, and then have lots of lots of adventures with them.

I also made stop motion animations with them, because why not?

She’s ready for adoption! #available #danita #danitaart #paperdoll #artdoll #paperartdoll #watercolor #ink

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With these dolls, you can create your own happy place. It brought me so many memories from when I was a child and your world is safe and everything is possible.

You can start a collection with them, and if you are a responsible person and not a big kid like me, you may want to preserve them in a beautiful frame.

They will look great on a wall too! Just make sure you get them out of the glass from time to time so you can play with them… There is no fun in being a doll if no one is going to play with you!

You can visit the complete collection on my website, there is a special collection dedicated to them right here.

SEE THE COMPLETE PAPER DOLL COLLECTION

Thanks for staying with me! Don’t forget to share and comment your thoughts, I would love to hear your opinion on them!

Beautiful art from the heart: The official blog.

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