Once upon a time once I dived into puberty and left toys I started to dress playmobil dolls to resemble all the historical figures that I loved.
My mother, an excelent seamstress, introduce me to first fabrics needle stitches. Soon I had built a Royal Court from different epochs!
Still surviving examples:
As time went by and I continued growing I felt rather bored with the scale and lack of characterization of figures and started to creat dolls out of a structure of cardboard with faces and hands meticulously (by then) carved on plaster. Very frail due to dampness there is still a few at my parents house, but, oh poor creatures!
Painting started to sprung up more more and dolls "died" if you know what I mean...
In 2007 I had the oportunity to moove from my parents cottage in the middle of nowhere to Lisbon! By then I had been in south of England, Paris, had had two painting exibitions in Zagreb, Rotterdam (which I loved!!) Amsterdam, Scotland, Milan and an awfull experience in the Swiss countryside, but actually living on a citty it was the first time! In the city it seems that everything hits you differently! One of the things I brought with me were the epoch dresses that I'd been doing for Barbie dolls ( probably with the intentions on making them to become models for paintings... ) :
Now the scale was fine, but still no features and... damn! the pose always looked like an inflatable doll!!
So I guess that inspired by some dumies on a fashion showcase window made of placs of acrilic all together, I thought on making the bodies out of a structure of pressed newspaper paper and wood glue and then heads and faces with some molding paste, then the dress, hair out of wigs and jewelry out of several different beads:
(first atempt to portray Queen Maria I of Portugal - XVIII / XIX centuries)
So by now I had paper sculptures (looking just like Giacometti's bronze figures) , but as I tried my first atempt to be comercial I was advised to redesign the structure into a more maleable to be able to do them quicker and also easier to dress! And so I did! An wire T shape structure covered with sponge, with legs made still with the paper mixture then covered with molding paste. Finally to hold the heavy ceramic head a kind of a vest also in paper around the doll's waist.
By still testing various materials and also my patience, noadays I feel I can create just anything! From people to animals, clothes from any kind of epoch to armours from tin, shoes, hairstyles, you name it! Your antcestor! Even your portrait dressed from someone you like!