09 July 2012

My Take on Super Heroes - Spiderball & Fatman at BUS Gallery

My Super Balls - Spiderball & Fatman - for Big Umbrella Studios Gallery show
When Rick from Monkey + Seal told me that Big Umbrella Studios was going to be doing a comic book hero themed show, I practically begged him to let me be in it! After all, I am a nerd.

But not the nerd that grew up reading these comic books - I was the nerd who'd rush home after school to sit down with a bowl of cereal & watch Batman cartoons. And on the weekend, after the Batman cartoons were over, I'd watch Batman movies.

I really liked Batman. :) He's super badass.

So when I found out that Batman would be featured along with Spidey in "The Amazing Arachnid Guy & Flying Rodent Man Tribute Show" ... you know I had to give it a shot.

Fatman - Super Ball Series - by nerd JERK - $150 USD
FATMAN, as I lovingly call him, is about 7" tall and is made of soft wool blended & acrylic yarns. His cape is made of wool felt & his little accents on his face, emblem & belt are hand-cut eco felt.

Can I just say that when I saw him all together for the first time, I squealed like I was 9 again?!?! I had originally pictured him all dark, muscular and fierce, but then it struck me that's not so much my style. I'm a round human that make round toys our of soft yarn... there ain't no shame in Fatman's game.

You can check out more deets (and even BUY HIM) on Etsy. :)

Spiderball - Super Ball Series - by nerd JERK - $150 USD
SPIDERBALL was another story. Made solely of acrylic yarn & eco felt, this guy was a hell of an embroidery piece. All of Spiderball's trademark accent webbing was hand-stitched over many hours. He also stands about 7" tall and is crazy awesome.

After unsuccessfully stitching his planned out webbing no less than 5 times, I finally had to just freeball it. I was obsessed with getting it right... and I still don't think I quite got it. But for a Spiderman amigurumi whose head is only half of a ball..?!! Not so bad. It also struck me that I had to do the webbing detail work on every red surface on Spidey... which really frustrated me. In the end, though, I gotta say it was worth it.

These guys were so time consuming - and I wasn't really expecting them to be!! The snag I ran into was that I ended up redesigning the kind of Spiderman & Batman I wanted to do about 3-5 times (depending on each character, respectively) and even started crocheting Spiderman in cute muscular form, using new techniques to create joints and such.

But no matter how hard I tried, I just hated doing it that way.

From the very beginning, I giggled at the thought of them being balls. Mainly cos I like saying the word "Balls!" but also cos how rad would it be if these guys were reduced from all muscles to roly polies?!

It was exciting to try out new methods of construction that I hadn't really thought about doing before and go through the whole "This Will Never Work!" design phase again. I haven't had a chance to be able to do new designs in such a long time, especially with new techiniques. I hope with my rebranding in 2013, I'll be able to make a lot more items that challenge me in rad ways.

Thanks to Rick Kitagawa & the whole Big Umbrella Studios crew for letting me show my work in this awesome show last month!

I'll also be submitting some of my more well known pieces for Big Umbrella Studios' upcoming show, J-Pop Explosion!! The opening will be this upcoming Friday, July 13th from 7 to 11 PM.

There's a whole bunch of talented artists that'll be featured, along with food carts, a DJ & a live art battle!! I don't see how we could stay away. Lolita kawaii-ness and overall Japanese awesomeness also encouraged. :D See you there!
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