Tuesday, July 01, 2014

R. John Wright Scarecrow

Preview description per R. John Wright: 

We hand-dyed cotton fabrics for the coat and pants. On the pants, we positioned and sized the inset patches in the front which are of various specific colors (one being plaid). The buttons are  a muted dark blue color and the button holes themselves are bound. There are also several strategically-placed tears in the costume where the straw pokes through.
The boots are hand-cobbled out of distressed leather. (If you slip one off you can check out his toes!) The gloves are made of cotton twill based exactly on a vintage pair of cotton work gloves with separate fingers and a knit wristband. All the clothing requires extensive airbrushed shading for added dimension. We're finding that the scale of these characters is sooo delicious! The accessories are not exactly miniatures but a bit larger—more like 'Salesman Samples' of real-life objects. We collect salesman samples and it's a wonderful size to be working in because you don't have to sacrifice the details. Of course, as everyone knows, the Devil's in those details!
Working on these dolls and their costumes gives us great admiration and respect for the work of Gilbert Adrian who oversaw the design of the marvelous Oz costumes. The countless design decisions which had to be made every step of the way came together so perfectly! Just one example is the subtle shape of the Scarecrow's hat and the sag of the brim. There is the same attention to detail in the tilted crown and asymmetrical brim of the Witch's hat. Adrian's instincts with regard to all these aspects is flawless and far more complex than meets the eye. It truly is an honor to pay homage to his genius through our work on this series of dolls.
We're also finding that the 'tactile' nature of the materials themselves bring the dolls to life. When you're face to face with this you experience the textures of the fabrics and the leather, wood, felt, straw etc. It's actually a mixed-media sculpture which contributes to the illusion of seeing the actual person standing before you in a small scale. 

Faithfully based on the beloved character immortalized by Ray Bolger in the 1939 film, Scarecrow has been brought to life by R. JOHN WRIGHT DOLLS for the first time in the medium of molded felt.

Oz's Scarecrow from R. John Wright Dolls is faithfully based on the original motion picture images. Standing 18 inches tall, he is fully jointed at the shoulders, hips, knees, elbows and neck with the R. John Wright ball & socket jointing system with an internal wood mechanism. The molded felt character face has been finely modeled in a true likeness with hand painted features and embossed burlap complexion. Under his costume, the Scarecrow has a realistic molded felt torso and limbs and under his gloves, his amazing sculptural felt hands have individually sewn fingers!

Extensively researched for the utmost in authenticity, Scarecrow's costume features a detailed coat tailored exactly like the original out of cutstom dyed cotton flannel with bound buttonholes, leather buttons and ragged tears. The trousers are also made of custom dyed flannel with hand-stitched inset patches. The authentic cotton twill work gloves have individual fingers and a knit wristband and the hat is made of all-wool felt. His hand-cobbled boots are made of distressed leather. Custom-made miniature rope and straw accents complete his trademark ensemble.

Scarecrow is produced at the R. John Wright Dolls studio workshop in Bennington, Vermont, in a numbered limited edition of only 250 pieces worldwide. The 'RJW' brass button is affixed to each doll as a lasting mark of identification and a signed and numbered certificate of authenticity is included inside the deluxe Wizard of Oz presentation box. Subject to availability, matching edition numbers will be provided to other characters in the R. John Wright Wizard of Oz collection.

Ray Bolger (1904-1987), an American entertainer of stage and screen, is best known for his iconic portrayal of the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz. Bolger began his career in vaudeville and his limber body and ability to ad-lib movement won him many starring roles on Broadway in the 1930s. Bolger's film career began when he signed a contract with MGM in 1936. Two years later Bolger was cast as the Tin Woodman in the studios big fantasy production The Wizard of Oz. Feeling he could use his dancing and comedic skills to greater effect, Bolger was delighted when his role was switched to that of the Scarecrow instead. Bolger also played the role of "Hunk" - Uncle Henry and Aunt Em's farmhand - which was the Scarecrow's Kansas counterpart in the sepia-toned sequences at the beginning and end of the film. 

The Scarecrow is available direct from the R. John Wright company store for $1750 which includes shipping and insurance.  Or the Scarecrow can be purchased from authorized R. John Wright retailers.  The Scarecrow is the fifth in The Wizard of Oz collection. Previous releases are Dorothy, Toto, the lullaby league, and the Wicked Witch of the West. Forthcoming releases will be the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, and R. John Wright announced via Facebook they are adding Glinda to the roster.  

The Toy Shoppe has additional images which are magnificent!!!