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MISCELLANEOUS SUBJECT:
About the Artist Ann Lenore Vanture


In December of 1962, the pop artist Andy Warhol was asked in an interview, "What do your rows of Campbell's soup cans signify?" Warhol responded, "They're things I had when I was a child"...and that is exactly what my Paper Minis artwork signifies to me. Paper Minis are an expression of the warm fuzzies of my childhood, and are a form of Pop Art but are easier to carry around than a large silk-screened canvas of a can of soup.

Surprisingly, I don't have an active dollhouse on display at my home, I just love little things and don't need dolls or their houses to display a Paper Minis. Many of my creations were inspired by childhood and other life memories. For instance, the vintage Paper Minis remind me of visits to my grandparents in Missouri and to my Great Grandma Woo in Kentucky. The McDonald's fast food items and vintage place mats remind me of when we returned from our tour of duty in France in the 1960s and discovered these new fun places to eat popping up everywhere along the highway to Missouri. The Olive Garden restaurant items remind me of the many times I took my mother and father (his favorite restaurant second only to local Mexican restaurant Anita's) to dinner. Obviously, Paper Minis represent events and memorabilia that are close to my heart. 

I never focused on the fact that I was drawn to miniatures until about 1998. How did that fact go unnoticed? Odd, for if you open my powder room medicine cabinets you won't find room deodorizer or Advil...instead an outstanding collection of fast food meal toys–going back to the miniaturized McDonald's French fries that makes into a kid's transformer fighter. In the other cabinet can be found souvenirs from my childhood including a tiny glass bottle of gold water...Senator Barry Goldwater's presidential campaign handout.

My younger sister, Cordelia (Deedle), is actually the force that got me started on Paper Minis. She has spent years populating a wonderful Victorian house our Father built for her as well as many room boxes. One day she showed me her latest dollhouse accessories purchase. I was impressed, but felt that the little kitchen groceries could be improved. Having worked as a graphic artist for many years, and with Deedle's encouragement, I quickly became obsessed with creating the perfect 1:12 scale miniatures. A task that took many years longer than I thought it would. The resulting Paper Minis' process is my special "secret recipe" -- 10 years to figure out how to bring out color, texture, crisp lines and readable typesetting at a scale 1/12th our human size! If you have been following Paper Minis over the years on-line from the end of 2002, you know it has been an interesting journey.

Paper Minis' format has run the gamut of high-tech on-line downloading...to honor-system on-line downloading...to auto-executable CDs. Paper Minis became known all over the globe, and how exciting for me to have e-pals from as far away as Australia! Anyway, each of those systems had its virtue, and customers liked Paper Minis regardless, but I was always trying to perfect the product line.  With the downloadable types of delivery I couldn't control how customers' printouts were looking. Each customer's printing situation is different of course...different paper, different ink...all these elements impact the quality (or lack thereof) of a finished Paper Minis. So my next logical step in developing Paper Minis products was to develop pre-printed, pre-cut kits. Armed with a new computerized cutter I was cutting morning, noon and night. All that labor meant higher priced Paper Minis and took me away from the creative part – designing!

Then came the light-bulb moment. From customer feedback, I learned hobbyists like to cut their own Paper Minis. It's therapeutic (translation: fun). So back to the drawing board I went and shortly thereafter Paper Minis easy-to-make, DIY, pre-printed kits were born and well received. In tandem with the easy-to-make DIY pre-printed kits, I spend a great deal of time assembling the Paper Minis Newsletter and designing sample projects in many doll scales. These are enjoyed by literally thousands of club members – I like to whet members' appetite with club projects so that they can't resist the catalog of available kits. It's also a great way to learn the hobby before making a purchase.

As of Mid-2020, 18 years later from the start, I can now announce that all Paper Minis products are professionally printed in great detail in booklet fashion. All projects are easy-to-make! However, if you are feeling uneasy, every kit has either an on-line tutorial (most are photo-tutorials) or the booklet come with a tutorial. The great thing about an on-line PDF is you are able to zoom in on the photos for up-close viewing.

Along with the new format comes a new URL/domain name, DIYDollAccessories.com. There will be lots of little boys who call their game figures "Paper Minis" that will be so happy with the name change. :)

So with the new domain name comes a newly designed easy-to-use website. FYI, the business name is The Bottega Design Studio, the URL is DIYDollAccessories.com, and my product line is named Paper Minis. I hope that explanation clears up a mystery or two.

In closing, I believe that Paper Minis kits will be collectable items in years to come--so take care of your little treasures. Keep them safe in display cabinets or in diorama room boxes. Behind glass is the best, away from bright light and dust. I think you will enjoy making Paper Minis as much as I enjoy designing them. Collect one each month and sign and date the bottom. Your great-grandchildren will be enthralled with your collection. That reminds me of the "little things drawer" my Grandmother Woodruff kept in her kitchen to keep us busy when we visited!

Ann at DIYDollAccessories.com 

Self Portrait

 


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DIY Doll Accessories Website is a division of the
Bottega Design Studio
Paper Minis Miniatures
are the products designed here

On-Line Since 2002
Front Royal, Virginia

http://www.DIYDollAccessories.com
email: Ann-Vanture@PaperMinis.com

 
©Copyright for all Paper Minis doll and dollhouse accessories
held by Ann Vanture, 2003-Ad Infinitum
All rights reserved (worldwide rights)


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