Thursday, November 10, 2016

Rochester Mini Maker Faire Preview: Ms. Lucha

I will be presenting a new project for my third year at the Rochester Mini Make Faire on Saturday, November 19th, from 10 am to 5 pm at the Rochester Convention Center. Year one and year two were awesome, and I'm very excited about this year as well.

This year I am doing a project I am calling the Articulated Paper Creature Mash-Up.  That's a mouth full, but what is means is that you can come to my booth, stamp an image of various body parts of a character on cardstock, cut them out, and assemble the character with brass fasteners to create a poseable/jointed/articulated paper doll.  I have hand carved each of the pieces into a rubber stamp by hand, so you can build your creation from the ground up.

Oh, you mean like a paper doll that my grandma used to play with?  Well, sort of, but not exactly. The characters and creatures are not just little cute little girls with pony-tails.  The characters are from other local artist's imaginations.  You can build a single character, or mix-and-match pieces together to create a brand new mash-up.

I will highlight each character over the next few days.

Today I am featuring Chris Charles's creation: Ms. Lucha

Chris Charles is a letterpress printer, and is the creator, owner, operator of Moon Rabbit Press.
I got to know Chris through our artist group that sells work on, the Rochester NY Etsy Street Team.  Chris has been printing her work on her own at Moon Rabbit since 2010.  Usually when I think of letterpress, I think of type, and sometimes some graphics.  Chris is all of that, but with another added layer.  Much of the graphics you see in Chris's work is also hand carved in linoleum by her own hands.  No machinery involved.  As a hand carved, I totally respect that.

Ms. Lucha, as we are now calling her, has been around for awhile actually.  Ms. Lucha is the star character on a poster Chris has been selling for years.  The story goes something like this.  Chris is approached to do a poster for an upcoming concert.  The performers are were Eilen Jewell and Los Strait Jackets.  Chris combines the flavors of both musicians and carves up a cross-dressed luchadore, complete with lipstick and cowboy boots.  It's a killer design, don't you think?

I have seen the poster for years in here craft booth at local art shows.  I'll confess, I'm a huge wrestling mark.  I love this gender bending design, and thought it would be totally rad to bring Ms. Lucha to life so she could be posed in the wrestling moves she was born to do.

Chris prints most of her work on the presses at the Genesee Center for the Arts and Education.   Her work can be found at most of the major arts+crafts show around Rochester and beyond, like Artist Row, Mayday Underground, and the Clothesline Art Show.  She always finds the right blend of text, graphic, and color to make her work stand out, like her best selling crowing rooster with the text, "Rise and Shine, Bitches!"

I can't wait to see how Ms. Lucha (prototypes pictured) gets further mashed up with other characters at Maker Faire.  I know the fists will be flyin'!

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