Day 17: Fear Me, I Have Digital Calipers

I lead a group called the Maida Dolls Group which is made up of people who like to study antique folk art dolls and make creations inspired by them.  It's a great group of people.  We share tips and resources with one another.  Recently, Lora Soling shared about a site called Micromark which has some great tool options for people who work on a smaller scale.  

Because of the way my eyes work, my sculpted faces often look asymmetrical.  I have one eye that is far-sighted and one eye that is near-sighted, and have mono vision.  The eye doctor tells me that some people pay to get mono vision!  Anyway, monovision causes wonky perceived symmetry.  

Looking at artwork in a mirror helps me see some of these issues that my eyes miss in their normal mode.  But using calipers to measure one side of a sculpt against another will help me check for wonky-ness.  The calipers above are digital, which is a nice feature - saves time in holding the calipers against a ruler to get a measurement.

Now, I don't want to get too over the top with the symmetry.  The doll above has some symmetry issues.  But the world is not symmetrical.  Look at the faces of your loved ones.  Check out the golden leaves on a maple tree in autumn.  Not symmetrical, but beautiful.  Still, I don't want the asymmetry to be something that is distracting in a jarring way.

So I am going to have great fun using my new toy!  And I might use them to measure a few noses in our family.  Fear me, I have digital calipers.  


Jan Conwell said...

Your title cracked me up.

Dixie Redmond said...

It cracked me up! ;-)

Unknown said...

Well it seems to me that you should take full advantage of your unique "mono-visual" perspective on things when creating your art because asymmetry can indeed be beautiful, as you point out!

Dixie Redmond said...

Yes, I don't worry about it overly much. But sometimes on very very small creations the asymmetry int hat scale makes for major wonky-looking stuff.

Loved your paper wreath tutorial! Shared it around the world! :-)

bog said...

Thanks for giving me a mention here! Glad to know those calipers are helping you feel empowered. ;-). I don't have that particular problem with my eyes, but I have endless issues with symmetry...and I find myself wondering why I worry about it, since nobody has a symmetrical face, as you mention. Except, of course, for dolls....

"Do not let what you cannot do
keep you from doing what you can do."

John Wooden