Day 17/29 Days of Giving is…

so um .

*looks around nervously*

yeah, the time i allotted to write this post?

it’s gone. burned up. deceased. vanished. taken flight.  down the drain. extinct. disintegrated into the vast emptiness of the world around us. spent. no more. nada.

it just, well in the words of a 3 year old. .. went bye-bye ….

yup. yours truly spent over 2 hours searching for these damn darn pics

that you shall see adorning today’s post

 (you better like ’em or at least pretend to! )

and i best finish organizing all these old files

(over 100,000 of them – you’d procrastinate too)

scattered across 3 friggin’ computers …

talk about poor time management and inefficiency

sheesh! bad chrysti!

so as you may have now guessed

there won’t be much writing accompanying this post

unless of course i start rambling

which lets face it … tends to happen alot



SO (she tries to state in an eloquent non-rambling, reader’s digest sorta way) today’s giveaway, is one you should be familar with already since it was the Day 1 giveaway too!. I HIGHLY recommend you go back to that post and check out the interview I did with Cate, and read the AMAZING discussions that took place in the comments. True inspiration and eye-openers there.  In the near future, I plan to elaborate on some of your remarks as well – it fascinates me!

I told ya, y’all inspire me daily. Love that.

 Moving on … if you took my advice, and re-read Day 1 … then you’ll know I was honored to be a part of a truly inspiring, and groundbreaking book  last year: Mixed-Media Self Portraits.  In it, I teach you how to create your own self-portrait assemblage, sculpture mask. (it’s alot easier than you think) A super cool background technique, the mask itself..and more. I talk (very personally) about what brought me to creating them. Why I create them, and why i want you to create them.

I’m interested in those of you that may have this book already – what did you think of my piece? Have you tried it? If not, why not? It’s truly not as complex as it seems in print. Claustrophobia isn’t an excuse either – I get panic attacks easily when confined, and actually did a-ok making these. On my own I may add and with no help. (said in my big girl voice) Though admittely, it’d be more fun with a friend. Pair up Ladies!

but here.. take a look at a few in-progress shots as I worked on them…


Chrysti - Plastered


Proof I indeed went outside like this!


Saran Wrap + Vaseline makes for a hot head of hair.

 I want to see YOU like this. Yes – YOU! I want to see artists everywhere slathered in plaster and exploring a medium they may not be used to. I want you to expand your creative horizons – and see what happens as a result. What have you got to lose?

My entire purpose with this project was to challenge not only  myself but to challenge you. It was to create a self-portrait that captured who I was on the inside (and the many moods i experience)– with a loose, rough, raw abstract form. I wanted to teach a mixed-media project that you don’t see very often. I wanted to get to know myself better, I craved a bit of that oh-so-awkward-uncomfortable-squirmy feeling to work with, as it’s usually where I make the most profound insights.

I also found a few detail shots of the masks featured in the book, someday I’ll get the rest of the shots up too… the quote at the top of the post is part of the mask ‘raw’ … and here’s a few other shots for your viewing pleasure …






I want to know your honest thoughts – constructive criticism included – let me have them, and you  just may win a copy of Mixed-Media Self Portraits yourself! One person will win a copy, with my project signed… and if my studio sale pieces on etsy sell out this week – I’ll order another copy for another lucky receipent or two – you never know just what I’ll do! Heck, I don’t even know what I’ll do half the time… 

To enter today simply…

  • On this post; in the comments answer one or more of these questions: What stops you from making your own Self-Portrait Mask?” or if you have created one tell me how the experience was for you  or what you thought of my piece, these glimpses – ie feedback folks!  Extra Credit if you tell me how hot i look smothered in plaster & vaseline. It’s the stuff fantasies are made of kids! (god i hope not) 
  • Do this by: Sunday, January 18th, 2009
  • PLEASE keep Spreading  the word! Blog it, Tell your friends — the works! I’m amazed daily at the impact this project is having on people. I want it to be contagious, plus it fuels me to make it bigger & better! 
  •  Enter Day 0 & Day 16 still!
  • Check out the first batch of winners, the second batch of winners and the third batch of winners!
  • Review, or Buy Mixed-media Self-Portraits if you haven’t already too! (I know, shameless) Enter even if you have it — you can pass it on to someone else!
  • Sincerely, The plastered Chrysti

    51 Responses

    1. A self portrait mask looks like fun. I’ve never done one, just haven’t thought about it. How did you do it?
      I liked the words on the one mask. I also liked the buttons with the flowers on the other.
      Extra credit: Of course you look great even in vasoline and plaster! Your inner beauty shows in what you do, too.

    2. Oh my gosh- I saw this book on Amazon and I have wanted it ever since. I added it to my wishlist for christmas but didnt get it :( I really love the mask with the words, great job.

      kayceewilliams AT gmail DOT com

    3. I’ve never made a portrait like this because – well, I never thought of it!
      …now i want to try it!

    4. wow.

      this is indeed a challenge! i have a slight fear of masks (i wonder what that means?) but i am intrigued by the process and LOVE the outcome of your exploration with this medium. the words spilling across the lips are just wonderful. i am always up for a challenge, so i can see giving this a try. i teach art to kids and i always like doing mask projects with them…i never thought to try it myself!


    5. Oh Chyrsti, you are one hot babe in that fabulous mask of yours. WOOT!

      And why haven’t I made a self-portrait mask? Well, because I’m not sure where to start. I WANT to make one (since yours is sooooo awesome and you looked so gorgeous while making it) but since I don’t have a copy of Mixed-Media Self Portraits, I don’t know where to begin…was that obvious enough sucking up? lol

      I have no problem begging and groveling, if need be…just say the word.

      But seriously…if I win, you have my word that I will make my own mask (pics of every step included) and post it on my blog…cross my heart. *smile*

      Peace & Love,

    6. WOW! so you did this more than once, my thoughts are, does it work as a facial as well, if I can get those enlarged pores reduced or cleaned out in the process I would try…lol….how long did you have to wait. I could see getting claustrophobic…when normally I am not. but inside a plaster cast, would be a tight place. yikes……but I love the work…amazing. and I love the hands. and I’m lovin’ the crazy quilt eye patch and blue star eyebrows, ….I have trouble at the dentist when he makes the dental impressions……..hmmmmm would have to do some serious meditating with mood music, but I can snorkel along the beach for a long time ( mask and snorkel) without getting in a panic. why would plaster bother me….what does this say that this frightens me? I’ve never been frightened by an art project. therapy, I need therapy. but I want to try this….sigh…..what to do…..

      I think fear would stop me from making this sort of self portrait and now I am embarrased for having said it. This is a woman who grabs the wrong part of a soldering iron and doesn’t flinch, this is a woman who will tell you deep dark secrets and expose my inner most thoughts. not sure I could survive plaster on my face….and I am so mad at myself…….this is a woman who is able to tell you I am afraid to put plaster on their face, who else tells those sorts of things….breathe deep. I’ll go away now!

    7. I have no reason for not trying face-plastering except for not knowing how, specifically. I loved the words you put over the lips of your mask, and the hand mask over the buttons shows me how we grasp to try not only to keep things, but maybe hold it inside. It will always spill out, though.

      I would really like to try this, and I’d even post it to my own blog where I don’t have my own face planted anywhere on it (unless you count a first-grade photo – nahhh). I’d even post it to your blog so you don’t feel so alone!

    8. Chrysti- your masks are amazing! I don’t quite know how to put into words my reaction- but the masks are on the one hand dark and on the other insightful. I’m tired so I’m probably not making much sense. But bravo!!

      As for why I haven’t done a mask self-portrait- I don’t know… I guess it seemed time-consuming a maybe a bit scary but now I’m truly intrigued!


    9. I haven’t done a face mask because I never thought of doing it. Also I don’t know for sure how – I don’t have any plaster – or is this one of those “make it at home” plaster recipes.

      I’d love to win the book. It was on my Christmas wish list. But alas I didn’t get it.

      Perhaps I wasn’t good enough this year LOL

    10. Making a mask is not something that I can see myself doing, but I never thought I’d be doing self-portraits and I have been attempting them this past week. I think this book would be a valuable resource to help me.
      And DAH-LING, you looked MAW-VA-LOUS in your mask!

    11. ok, I reread and you said claustrophia is no excuse but I still freak with the dental impressions….I think I could do this with someone, but my face would crack, I’m sure from giggling….tee hee , feeling better, thank you (lol)

    12. I am truely invigorated by this idea. I think this is a must for my ” 2009 DEFINE ME” year long project. I’m using 2009 to find out who i am now that i’m single as opposed to being a single parent. I have been having a very hard time with this lonesome phase of my life. I am looking inside me wondering who i will find. I can see this project as therapeutic and cathartic not to mention absolutely FUN. I don’t think the prep would bother me.
      you look absolutely STUNNING in vaseline and saran wrap!
      I think everyone having an identity crisis could benifit from this.
      I am totally stoked with this idea.
      i have linked your blog here:

    13. Oh my goodness! LOVE the mixed media one with the hand, flowers, buttons, and feathers…Wow! The word college one is wonderful…I do not have this book but would enjoy learning all these new techniques….I have NO idea how you make a mask like this….but I will say you do look HOT……HEAT HOT…was it hot? How long did you have to wear it? Way curious about did you get extra face breakouts from the vaseline? HaHa!

    14. I have (drooled over) seen the book in Borders (looks great!) but have yet to purchase it. (was buying xmas gifts last time i was there) Now I’m most intrigued to pick it up and try this process. I have made a plaster mask of my face before and did a plaster casting of my pregnant belly but neither of them became mixed media art pieces, hmmm. I HAVE made a self portrait shrine doll that can be found here and am in the process of making a felted self portrait piece. wish me luck… and thanx for the inspiration too!

    15. What a brilliant idea, I have the book and was fascinated when I read it, I thought “I must try that” but my muse has been on vacation so nothing created for a while… this has gone on my TO DO LIST…(it grows daily!!!)

      Love how you decorated it and embellished it, the words are perfect and the buttons are great (don’t you just love buttons)


    16. I haven’t tried making a mask of my own face simply because, like many of the others, I hadn’t thought of it. It looks like a GREAT idea, though — really cool! Now, it’s occurred to me, but I have no idea how to go about it. I’ve seen the book before, but self-portraits weren’t my thing, so I’ve never looked through it. But if I’d have known that it contained such yumminess as your project, I’d have owned it by now!

      I really love the collaged mask with all the words on it; I love words. However, I love the other mask, too. It would be hard to pick a favorite, just between the two!

      And you DO look great in your plaster masks! But then, you always do look good, don’t you?

      I blogged about your website and your giveaways yesterday:

    17. Wow – its ages since I visited and strangely I was thinking about making a mask yesterday – though this time I decided I’d make a plasticine mould….

      Yes I have made masks this way, three of them: Animal, Vegetable and Mineral. And yes I do have photos of them but they are on slides and I’ve no slide scanner. It was ten years ago.

      Mask making is a brilliant idea for self-portrait!

      We do show who we are more clearly, at least in some facet of us, whilst consciously wearing a mask…

      My skin didn’t much like the experience though which is why I’m thinking about using a plasticine base this time… though now I’ve seen yours I’m wondering if I ought to put up with it for the sake of art.

    18. you look stunning in your plaster facial :)
      i really don’t think i could do this-severe claustrophobia
      thankfully i have never broken anything i would go batty if i had to wear a cast
      i really do love the idea tho
      i have to wonder what kind of plaster you used
      and how long the drying time is ie. how long does it take before you can take it off-i am getting panicky just talking about it!!
      any chance of a “tute”??
      they are wonderful pieces of art
      enjoy your day

    19. I’ve never seen these before but they are very cool… what a unique take on the self-portrait! I would be very interested to try one of these, time permitting. I like your idea of doing this with an art buddy… maybe a project to save for the next time I go home to create with my mom.

      P.S. You do look HOT in plaster and vaseline! Oh, did you mean “hot” as in “hottie” or just plain sweltering? LOL

    20. I never thought of doing a face mask. I thought of doing a belly one when I’m pregnant. Can I ask did it itch? My skin is so sensitive. Your mask looks like a green goddess to me. What a creative act to do. Then something to always have.

    21. Cool! Just never thought of doing it.. would love a copy of the book!


    22. Chrysti – I have so many questions. I just recently started working with plaster. I cannot wait until next week – not procrastination truly as I have some time off next week – to get working on this. I have a few other plaster crafts/designs in mind also. – Nicki

    23. Many years ago, I made a mask in a class, so I had help. I’m not sure I even know where it is anymore – but it was a fun experience. It would be fun to make another one – I know it would look a lot different today.

    24. “What stops you from making your own Self-Portrait Mask?” I have never even heard or seen this technique, I guess that is what has stopped me, but if I win the book I would for sure try it and even send ya pics!! :) Oh and you look like a Greek Goddess in your plastered self!

      Thanks again for your giveaways!!

      Artful Blessings,

    25. I’ve tried plaster casting on other parts of the body, but never on the face. You look pretty calm and the end project looks great. So did you get any of the stuff in your eyes or mouth? Was it hard to get it out of your hair?

    26. Well I think you’ve got a lot of GUTS!!! Not just to do the physical mask….although I’m sure that’s a PITA but to do a 3-D self portrait. Why do I think that’s harder than a “flat” one…like a painting? Well, cause it’s more “real”.

      Since this all started I managed to do an acrylic portrait. (not self…that’s still on the “to-do” list) I think I’d have to do THAT before I tried a self-portrait mask. Little by little. I think it would be an accomplishment in itself to delve into the “inside” me…this is a process I’ve just started working on…again (Working, raising 2 kids, running a house…amid other things kinda put me, my thoughts, feelings and desires on the “back burner”) Now that the kids are grown and I’m contemplating retirement in the near future, I am working on “finding myself” again. I think a self-portrait mask would definitely be a VERY interesting undertaking!

      I love the one with the seashells….I think I’d like to do one like that….incorporate “myself” into a collage!

      WOW….this book MUST go on my acquisition list!

    27. You have just utterly amused the heck out of me and that is saying something after the year I have had, trust me.

      I just started blogging a couple days ago and I’m still figuring everything out.

      I’m very interested in the book, both the teacher and the artist in me want it.

      My son is going to love when we make a mask, definitely have to check into this further.

      Have a great sunshine-filled day. :)


    28. Oh my you look so H-O-T smothered in plaster and Vaseline in those photos!!!!!! A few years ago I told my Brother about these self portrait mask…and he and his family each made one in plaster. But not sure what they did with them after they were done. He said they had a blast making them.

      Unfortunately I do not own the book yet, but would love too….so I can not comment on the book, but I LOVE the preview photos you showed.

      I love the collages words on the one and the flowers in the eye socket. And the other with the hand included with the shells and buttons is awesome too!

      I really do need to make one….are there instructions somewhere to follow?

    29. “What stops you from making your own Self-Portrait Mask?”

      the lack of Know-how

      You look like you could be a really good Mummy for hallowen :)

      The fact that you can put yourself out here like this for all the world to see, is SUCH an inspiration!


    30. Wow great mask .and you look so hot while making it LOLOLOL . but I really love what you did with the mask . I would love this book .
      Robin krieger

    31. I don’t do it because I know I could never look as hot as you!

      Though really, I get a feeling of panic just thinking about encasing my face in that stuff. I may know that I will be able to breathe, but there is a fear that keeps me from even contemplating the project on myself. I’ll anyone else do theirs tho!

    32. I have never considered making a self portrait mask, and I don’t have any of the necessary materials to do so.

    33. “What stops you from making your own Self-Portrait Mask?” I had never seen this…but it looks AWESOME! Yes, I want to do this…with a buddy. Yes, Beckie, let’s get together and do this if I get to come to Colorado in a couple of months! What fun that would be!!!

      Oh, Chyristi…you look totally HOT in your plaster mask…very mysterious and above it all…yes, very cool …uhh, I mean HOT! LOL

    34. I can’t bear the thought of having my face plastered – it sets off all sorts of claustrophobic panic alarms! I could do my hands, though… there’s an idea.

      Thanks for the extra goodies in my package with my paper purchase!


    35. Nothing has stopped me from doing this, really, just never thought of it. I think these look awesome! I’d love to read & see all the other ideas in the book. The plaster mask is a great idea for a collage canvas, & yes, you look HOT in it (more ways than one).

    36. […]  Enter Day 0 & Day 16 & Day 17 still! […]

    37. Hot? Most definitely…but I would save this extra-special look for those days when your own face just doesn’t cut it (sort of like the bad-hair days?).
      As for why I haven’t done this?…claustrophobia for one, and lack of supplies AND knowing how to do it for another. I’d certainly love to give it a try tho…and make sure I run around outside and scare the living bejeebers out of the neighbours (they already KNOW I’m weird from what they see hanging on my clothesline to dry…and it isn’t clothes!!).

    38. I have never even thought of this, so that was what was stopping me, but now, I am eager to try this, it looks like so much fun and it would be such a beautiful piece of art. I am definately going to do this soon :)


    39. Never thought about doing it before…but I don’t think it’s feasible with a 15 month old running around…so it’s a project to file away for the future)

      You look like one of the models from the Robert Palmer videos from the 80s with your plaster on. :)

    40. Oh my gosh- this is amazing! I so want to try this!!! I finally got the courage to pencil sketch my first self portrait last week, and even though I don’t think it resembles me, it was really rather freeing. I can only imagine how the healing and awakening power this book and the information it holds could help take me to greater heights.
      I would love to win it.

    41. […] Day 0 & Day 16 & Day 17  & Day 18 […]

    42. I love this project! I definitely want to try it sometime. What’s stopping me? Well, I don’t have the book yet (hint hint!) but other than that not much I guess!

      PS. you look hot smothered in plaster and vaseline!

    43. Oh gosh I remember doing these in college as part of our Media and Resources class! That takes me back…
      Bet my kids would love to try it too…

      I found these links for those who are ready to get plastered, hahaha:

      The first one has a link to a resource for buying plaster strips.


    44. … a face only a “mummy” could love!!

      I have the book and loved the masks you made. They were so inspiring I even looked you up on the internet!! I haven’t made one yet but only because I don’t have the time right now. I hope to get to do one this year.

    45. I have the book and I love it. I tried the plaster mask and it was so cool. What was awesome was when I started working on it; it seems like it was someone else. I had to keep reminding myself it was me!!! LOL I did this sometime ago and another artist told me he thought it was silly. Stupid man!! And then I got the book and was so validated!! Thank you!!!
      You look stunning in your mask though a little “deer in the headlights”!! LOL And it didn’t look that hot…was it?
      Hugging you

    46. To my very, extremely, incredibly, amazingly, phenomenally, waaayy hot friend Chrysti (who looks so dang good in plaster, Vaseline and Saran Wrap that it isn’t even funny!), I haven’t made one of these because I don’t know that I can. 1) I would have to do it on my own. I know, I know – I can hear you complaining – YOU did it on YOUR own. But did you do it on your own while watching 3 kids? Yeah. That’s what I thought.
      2) My kids would take advantage of this prime opportunity to take pictures of me. And promptly post them on MySpace, Facebook, and their various school websites.
      3) My last excuse? My sinuses. They are horrible – I’m sure living a mile above sea level doesn’t help – but they are so plugged up and dry that I’m afraid I’ll suffocate while doing this.

      And to be really ridiculous? I even have some theatrical modeling stuff made from gelatin that I could make one from. The kids have been after me for almost a year to let them use that stuff – you can mold faces, hands, feet, etc with it.

      So how dumb am I??? And, just for the record, I LOVE what you posted. LOVE it. Yummy!!

      And now I’m ready for my beating with the wet noodle – cuz I know it’s coming! ;)

    47. OH MY GOSH…. I haven’t seen the inside of a copy of the book. I have a group that I get together with once a month and we try new mediums, tools, projects all the time… I will have to suggest this. CAN YOU IMAGINE SIX of us in PLASTER!!!!!

      I know working on the assemblges will be the greatest fun.

    48. What has been stopping me? Not playing enough and not thinking about those masks for years, maybe since school or kindergarten? I don’t know, but when I see yours it inspires me for sure and I’m thinking… maybe I should do one just for the heck of it? I just might…

    49. […] 17-  Click Here to read all about it ! Prize: Prize:  a copy Mixed-Media Self Portraits (with my project signed )by […]

    50. I’m sorry to say that I don’t like this kind of 3-D art, I’m more into flat surfaces that are treated with all kinds of mixed media, especially paint, soft pastels, rubberstamps etc. But maybe it’s because I’m too intimidated by a 3-D surface… I do love the colours and textures on the last photo in this post.
      And dare I say it? It looks creepy, your head in plaster, it makes me feel like you’re forced into it and are prohibited to speak, only the eyes speak “sadness”. Just my thoughts…

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