Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Grand Quest for 2013 - In Search of the Paper Theater

Hey all it's Evelyn once again and this time I'd love to share with you 
one of my big quests for 2013... 
Paper Theater parts and fun items related to Toy Theaters.

The joys of Paper Theaters / Toy Theaters are going to play a major roll in my posts for 2013;
 so I chose to redesign my blog background to represent this.

Here is my "New" look.

New 2013 "Toy Theater" background and banner for my blog

I wanted my background image to have a muted or faded look but the 
original creation is actually a lot more vibrant in color and not "stretched" out as much.

Digitally composed Toy Theater Background by EKDuncan

I used an assortment of vintage Toy Theater parts to create my background.
It comprises of a portion of an assembled vintage theater and two different 
paper theater curtains in my collection.

The assortment of vintage Toy Theater - Paper Theater items used to create my background.

My fascination with paper theaters has caused me to acquire an unusual mix of
 vintage parts and pieces; as well as, photos of items on my "wish list".
So, I thought I'd combine a bit of all these elements into making my 
blog page background and banner.

For the background I used a portion of an assembled vintage toy theater that I had a photo of.  
(Sorry but for the life of me I can't locate where I downloaded the larger image from
 - I'll update the info here if I later find the link.)
I believe the Theater (Proscenium) is German c1880 by Adolf Engel
and is called Agyptischer Temple (Egyptian Temple)
There is one on display at the Bruce Museum  - HERE

I did some slight digital alterations to square it up, remove the curtain and a bit of color correction. Next I added in a different paper curtain element and overlayed another altered vintage paper curtain composition I created back in 2011.  

A selection of my altered vintage paper theater curtains 
can be seen HERE on my deviantArt account

I also used this teal curtain creation in my "Queen of the Castle" digital artpiece back in 2012.

Queen of the Castle digital artpiece by EKDuncan in 2012

 You might have noticed the background "Gothic Castle" in the above  piece 
was also used in my blog banner. It's a vintage piece by Winckelmann & Söhne.

My Banner using vintage images by Winckelmann & Söhne
 I used 2 separate Winckelmann & Söhne images to create the banner.
Both of which needed to be "stretched" a bit digitally but they worked well.
First was the castle image seen behind the ladies above and to top it off is a curtain I altered a while back. I believe the curtain is a Winckelmann but if this is not correct and you know who made it, please let me know - grins.

Two vintage paper theater curtains - I believe them to be by Winckelmann & Söhne
The curtain on the left is similar to the one I started with but mine is a bit more 
"tattered" looking so I thought you'd like to see a better example of it.  
This one can be seen HERE at www.geheugenvannederland.nl
They have a great assortment of paper theater related images which can be seen - HERE

I believe the first curtain to be a Winckelmann & Söhne since the one on the right is listed as such and is too similar to the left curtain to be a coincidence; however I'm not 100% positive.
The curtain on the right is part of the SKD (Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden) Museum Collection and can be found HERE. This site takes a bit more to find images related to paper theaters but they have some great reference images if you are trying to identify one or want to see what types were made through the years - it's worth "hunting" around.

For my application for the blog banner required an Aqua version of the curtain.  
I had made a similar alteration back in 2011 and just needed to create the aqua version.
Original vintage curtain and some of my altered versions for digital projects
I started with a vintage paper curtain (mine was missing most of the inserted scene portion) and did some digital restoration so I had a pretty red curtain. Then in 2011 I created a variety of jewel colored curtains from the original restoration. For my 2013 blog banner I needed a new color, so I started with the sapphire blue version made a few adjustments and voilà I had my aqua curtain.

Larger download versions of the curtains can be found on my deviantART account - HERE

Layering, stretching/squishing and adding in some text allowed me to create my new blog banner.
My Banner using vintage images by Winckelmann & Söhne
I love the magic of digitally working with vintage images.
It allows the original to remain intact or without further damage and lets us 
alter and create away to our hearts content.

That's my bit about my new blog look and how I created it.


So as you can see Toy Theaters are one of my passions and I intend to dedicate quite a bit of time sharing with you as I continue to grow my collection, learn more about them and assemble a few along the way.

Back in Feb 2011 -  I posted a bit about Toy Theaters and my interest in them -  HERE.  
It gives you a bit of an idea about them, just in case you've never seen one 
or are wondering what I'm talking about. 
You can also see some of my favorite Toy Theater finds on my Pinterest board  - HERE
I'm sure you'll catch the paper theater bug too after seeing some of those beauties.

Over the course of 2011 and 2012 I explored my "digital" side by creating a 
variety of art projects on the computer that had a "toy theater" look about them.
Those posts can be seen by clicking HERE  or you can select the 
"Toy Theater" label in the right hand blog column under "Labels" .

For 2013 - I launch off on a Grand Quest into the Paper Theater world.
I hope to add many vintage originals paper sheets to my collection, 
purchase a vintage theater of my very own, create some miniature theaters based on images 
from my collection and I want to create at least one original EKDuncan paper theater sheet set.

It's a tall order for 2013, let's see if I can accomplish it all by the end of the year.

Wish me luck!
And I hope you like the new look for the page.


  1. Your new blog is wonderful dear Evelyn!!!!
    Really really WONDERFUL indeed!
    Quelle classe! :)
    I suppose your new quest is not really new, because you've always loved old papers of curtains and theater and circus and ... so one.
    So I do!
    I wish you will find all kind of new treasures and, I want to thank you again to share them with us all my friend!
    You're such a sweet heart! :)
    Many kisses from France.

    1. Hello Dear Sim,

      Thanks for letting me know you like the new look to the blog.
      Yes, you are correct Paper Theater items as not "new" item for me to collect; however this year I intend to take it to a new level and hope you will enjoy the adventure along with me.

      Naturally, I'll still be presenting "Pretty Fashion Ladies" since all stages need actors and actresses - grins.

      Please continue to let me know what items you enjoy the most from my posts.

      Hugs back from the USA,

  2. Hello,
    Wonderful! Rich draperies! Finesse in details!
    There are a lot of depth in the creation with the ladies!!!
    Soooo beautiful!

    1. Hi Sylvie and thanks,

      You know how much I love my curtains and ladies. I use them every chance I get and did several scenes with them in posts last year.