Artwork & Blogpost by Natalie Parish, Bag End Studio, QLD

It’s no secret how much I love Alice in Wonderland Themes.  So, I was very excited to receive this month’s Rabbit Design Kit so I could build upon by Wonderland Artwork Collection. (see blog ‘We are All Mad Here – The Red Queen & Alice Art Dolls).  Therefore, I wanted to find some design elements that would work in with this collection. Secondly, I wanted to tie in the idea of falling down the rabbit hole (something I symbolically do daily).  This led to rearranging the MDF pieces to simulate the White Rabbit falling. 
However, I couldn’t think of what to do with all the extra pieces – especially the scroll. Finally, I hit upon the idea that when I am organized and ticking off errands, I am less likely to procrastinate.  I make lists and scroll through them all the time and still end up doing tasks in a furious hurry, much like when we first meet Lewis Carrol’s White Rabbit I realized. That led to the idea of attaching and decorating an old pinboard to my artwork to pin up my to do lists or bills in a vain attempt to not always be late.  Alas, due to time constraints I did not include the pinboard in these instructions but intend to do so at a later date (I have another rabbit hole to visit first).

Materials:

  • Rabbit MDF Cut Outs, Designer Chipboard Mats, 
  • Designer Stencil (I kept the stencils for another project)
  • Powertex Universal Medium. Colours of your choice. I used black
  • Stone Art 
  • Easycoat Varnish – Glossy 
  • Powercolours of your choice: I used titanium white, red, orange, and yellow
  • Colourtrix colours of your choice: I used white silver, pearl red, bronze gold and clear gold
  • Sand and Balls
  • Natural Mesh (from Bag End Studio) or material of your choice.
  • Powercotton (alternative crochet cotton or string)
  • Doll Eyes
  • Triangle Hooks for hanging.

From your useful box: 

  • Ribbing – like an old polo shirt collar
  • A small piece of Styrofoam 
  • Masking Tape & waste photocopy paper.
  • Chain, Wire & Skewers

Equipment: 

  • Plastic covered workspace
  • Mixing Bowls 
  • Paint brushes (one for Powertex and one or two for pigment colours) 
  • Lids for Palette (or alfoil).
  • Palette Knife, skewers, flat spatula, 
  • Clay modelling tool
  • Washing up Container for cleaning
  • Gloves, Chux Cloth, Paper towel 
  • Gladwrap (to wrap Stone Art clay and to cover opened Powertex bottles) 
  • Air-tight container to store clay. 
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late

Step 1: Design Layout 

  • Search Pinterest for inspiration.
  • Push or knife out your pieces and play with positioning them.
  • Cut out your material to fashion clothes. I used natural mesh to simulate a tweed coat.
  • Play with bits from your useful box – I used ribbing for the collar (later I also added more ribbing under the natural mesh coat).  I also found some chain for the fob watch.
  • Roll up some wastepaper into a ball shape and cover with masking tape to make a bunny tail.
  • Collect the necessary Powertex products and equipment and set up your plastic covered workspace.

Step 2: Make Stone Art

  • In a bowl with a medium amount of Black Powertex Universal Medium (approx. 1/2 cup), add Stone Art (approx. 1/2 cup) and mix with a flat spatula.
  • Keep adding small handfuls of Stone Art until it forms a kneadable dough like mixture that no longer sticks to the bowl or your gloves. Remove the sticky ball and add a little more Stone Art to the bowl to ‘flour’ the ball. Knead well until the clay can be pushed into a textured surface and be removed again without sticking. (Apologies, I used most of my stone art clay before the photograph).
  • Keep the clay ball wrapped in glad wrap and in a sealed airtight container to prevent hardening until use. 

Step 3: Seal Rabbit MDF Boards

  • Using a paint brush, seal both the back and fronts of all the MDF Boards and the bunny tail.
  • Also seal the chipboard pieces and whilst they are damp you can manipulate them carefully to create movement. 
  • Add a small piece of stone art under the clock face to lift it off its base.

​Step 4.  Join MDF Pieces together

  • Paint the fronts and backs of attachment points with Powertex.
  • Using some pre-made stone art clay cover attachment points on the back leave to dry (or hair dry to speed up process)
  • Repeat on the front.
  • It is possible to sprinkle stone art powder and create clay on the spot and then using a modelling tool push the clay along the edges of the pieces to attach them.
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late

Step 5.  Make the Bunny Tail

  • Paint half of the masking taped paper ball with Powertex
  • Dip into a bowl of Medium Balls, let dry a little.
  • Repaint with Powertex
  • Repeat to build up texture with the balls.
  • When dry paint the other half.
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late

Step 6.  Attach Jacket and Bunny Tail.

  • Using a paint brush, cover the natural mesh completely
  • Using gloved hands fashion the mesh around your rabbit MDF. 
  • Secure it by wrapping the mesh underneath or use stone art clay to assist attachment if necessary.
  • Place glad wrap under the natural mesh to keep it lifted.
  • Use the stone art to attach the Bunny Tail.
  • Once dry remove glad wrap.
I'm Late, I'm Late

 Step 7. Sculpt Rabbit Face

  • Use a ball of stone art and create a mound over the surface of your MDF Rabbit Head. 
  • Using modelling tools sculpt a rabbit face. I used photos from the internet and Pinterest as a guide.
  • Push doll’s eyes into the eye sockets and carefully push the clay around them to hold into place.
  • Create long sausages of clay to outline the Rabbit ears and attach using your modelling tools.
  • Cut 6 small pieces of wire to create whiskers.
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late

Step 8.  Attach Collar and Rabbit Face

  • Half dip the ribbing material into your bowl of Powertex, massage thoroughly, and hand paint it until it is completely covered. It should look matt not shiny and wet.
  • To save clay I used a little piece of Powertex painted Styrofoam and fashioned the collar around it
  • Position the collar and Styrofoam into place with the clay.
  • Add a lump of the clay as a neck for your rabbit’s head.
  • Push head into place and using a tool carefully spread out clay underneath attachment points to secure. 
  • Leave to dry.
  • I also used a second piece of ribbing to tidy up the look of the MDF under the jacket – like the back of a waist coat.
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late

Step 9.  Cover the Umbrella

  • Paint to skewers and position on top of the umbrella as shown.
  • Cover with scrap material to make your umbrella more 3D.


​Step 10.  Make the Rabbit Furry

  • Paint sections of Powercotton into a gloved hand (to avoid bunching and knotting)
  • Paint the MDF with Powertex and lay the painted polycotton on top to cover the base of the rabbit.
  • Using two skewers tease the polycotton apart starting with where you began as it will have dried a little and become tacky and easier to work with. 
  • Repeat on the arms at the front.
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late
I'm Late, I'm Late

Step 11.  Embellish with Powercolour & Colourtrix

  • Pour a small amount of Easy Coat Glossy Varnish into a lid or alfoil palette. 
  • Palette out the matt Powercolours & metallic Colourtrix pigments of your choice.
  • With a very dry brush take up a small amount of the Glossy Easy Coat Varnish onto the brush tips and criss-cross your brush onto the palette to load the varnish into your brush. 
  • Pick up a small amount of the pigment and criss-cross your brush with it into the palette to create a paint. Repeat process using colours as desired.
  • I used White Titanium on the rabbit face, tail and fur and highlighted with White Silver.
  • Red and orange blended on the tweed jacket. 
  • Yellow on the waistcoat under the jacket, highlighted in Rich Gold.
  • I used Rich Gold on the collar, with a touch of red.
  • A mixture of rich and bronze gold and white on the watch. 
  • A mixture of rich and bronze gold and red on the bow tie.
  • Dark Silver on the umbrella.
I'm Late, I'm Late

Step 12.  Attach Chain, Fob Watch and Umbrella and hanging hooks.

  • Using stone art clay attach the chain, Fob Watch and Umbrella into place.
  • Attach your D-ring hook on the back of your artwork as per picture
I'm Late, I'm Late

Congratulations You Have Finished!
I hope you had fun falling down this Rabbit Hole with me
I look forward to lighting the way in May
(a little hint there…)

Natalie
​Bag End Studio

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