Creatures Great & Small

Online Course

with Christine Shively-Benjamin

Starts February 1 - Just $45!

This class will be broken down according to the creatures. 

Together we will create: A Fox/Raccoon adaptation, Bird, Swan, Cat, Mice, Sheep, Fish and Rabbit/Bear adaptation. The Puff platform to place the animals upon is included. Running stitches and predominantly the Blanket stitch will be used in the construction and assembly of menagerie.

The structure of these creatures is a little too sophisticated to fall into the category of Primitive. However, not sophisticated enough to fall into the category of Realistic. It is somewhere in between. There is a simplicity of line that creates a recognizable silhouette for each critter.

There are many recurring forms, shapes and manipulations that will be employed in the creation of three dimensional creatures. The class will provide opportunities to discuss the technique, construction and the expansion of ideas with in person Zoom meetings in addition to a short video and PDFs.

Goals and Objectives

There are a number of goals and objectives that will be achieved in this class. Observing nature and breaking down the components of the flowers and leaves will enable the student to create what is on the list of items in the class. Those skills can be expanded to empower the student to break down the shapes and volume of other floral choices and take the intimidation factor out assembling a new choice of flower or leaf.

The vast horizon of possibilities that can be created from basic shapes like circles, rectangles, half circles, teardrops, and tubes will be explored as the class progresses.

Elementary sewing stitches can take the student a long way. Creating volume with a running stitch, manipulating shapes, layering color and repetition of shapes creates the natural harmony in floral design.

The small but important details of finishing each item will be stressed. Efficient methods of cutting components and resources will be shared.

Experimentation with proportion and manipulation of materials will be a feature to inspire the student to create combinations of foliage and floral elements.


Christine Shively-Benjamin

My doll art took root in my joy of finding a penny in the lining of a pocket. First impression is not worth much but with imagination, innovation, experimentation I would apply my life experiences to create my fabric figures. Turning the mundane into the marvelous has been a driving force in my life. I create opportunities in unlikely places.

The long doll art journey I have been on is a kind of three dimensional diary. The pages are crammed with the things that have sparked my imagination. The dolls are a result of a lifetime love affair with fabric, drawing and painting hand sewing and thread, portraiture, ethnic and historic costume and the desire to tell a story using the doll as the vehicle.

Experimentation, improvisation and discovery allow for the incorporation of the historic and cross cultural reference points, fashion, textiles and embellishment that has been my lifelong inspiration. The combination of observation with fantasy and imagination fuse the familiar with the foreign to create something new with a sense of inclusiveness.

Since experimentation is a guiding force it is not an accident that the fabric figures I create use the tools of improvisation. Yes...And...Agree and Add. Heighten and Explore.

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