"Sometimes I get so lost in those details that I don't realize exactly how weird something looks until I snap a photo and see it on my computer."
During the month of October we are celebrating Halloween on the blog by featuring dark, fantastical, or downright creepy Redbubble artists. You can check out last year’s Featured Fearsome Artists by clicking here.
DogzillaLives (aka Karen Main) creates intricately detailed and incredibly goopy polymer sculptures of mutated monsters, many-eyed beasties, and toothy slime creatures. Her work is primarily for sale as art pieces, household items, jewelry, fashion accessories, and original framed pieces, but she photographs and sells her amazing creations on Redbubble products so fans can own a piece of her unique world.
We chatted with her about her inspiration, her methods, and what draws her to make such fascinatingly bizarre monsters.
How did you start making polymer clay sculptures?
I just went to the store one day and bought some clay, took it home and started playing around with it, and the rest progressed from there.
Why are you interested in monsters?
Monsters are just fun to make, they are imperfect and maybe that’s why they are so interesting to look at. I love making the little details in each piece. Sometimes I get so lost in those details that I don’t realize exactly how weird something looks until I snap a photo and see it on my computer.
Can you talk us through the making of one sculptures?
Not really, I mean it’s pretty simple. I don’t start out with a concept drawing or anything. Sometimes I’ll have an idea in my head, and sometimes I’ll just start molding the clay and see where it takes me. But if you want a technical explanation I’m afraid that would be a very long and boring read, plus it’s kind of a secret. Though I will share tips and tricks with people who ask.
Where do you draw inspiration from for your artworks?
I draw inspiration from weird sea creatures, plants, mushrooms; and I am fascinated by bold natural textures.
How long does each sculpture take?
The sculptures can take an average of 1-3 days, larger ones taking longer.
Many artists have a long history with making artworks about eyeballs, like the Surrealists, or a lot of Pulp or Noir artwork – what do you love about them?
Well, they’re beautiful and each one is totally unique. If you get a chance, go look at Suren Manvelyan‘s macro photographs of eyes, it’s like looking into another world.
What advice would you give to artists wanting to work with Polymer?
Just go get some, and start messing with it! It’s inexpensive and fun to work with, and there are tons of tutorials online.
How has your photography developed to take such great photos of the artwork so it can be displayed on Redbubble?
One of the first things you’ll learn about selling things online is that you should have good photos. Photography is an art on its own, and I’ve been slowly learning more about it. I feel I still have trouble capturing the full effect of a three-dimensional object on camera.
Do you think you will ever tire of making monsters?
No, I don’t think I will. Though my hands disagree with me sometimes… I’m starting to make vases and lamps with pulsating LEDs in them, giving these monsters extra depth and life. There’s always fun things brewing here!
Do you celebrate Halloween?
No, I could never really get into it, which may come as a surprise to some people. I’m not really into horror movies either, except for a few classics.