Tuesday, February 16, 2010





As she was standing at the edge of the ocean she
could hear the waves chanting
their familiar song.

“Come to me, I am geater than you, I am wiser than
you..I am the one.”

She resisted once again. How long could she
continue to resist…How much longer before she
embraced her larger self,
her destiny,
her soul…
..the sea….

~ Cheryl Dolby ~

Decorating cigar boxes became a passion of mine a few years ago. There is an unbelievable story relating to my finding a huge stash of them at one of my art show adventures. If you’d like to read about it or would like to see some of the boxes I created from that stash, please click here.

As I have said in previous posts, I wrote a book titled She Who Whispers, which includes about 44 of the stories I give my finished pieces. I almost always sculpt women since I just can’t seem to come up with a good male face, and I write all women's stories (we have a lot to tell). I use the story of Oceana quite frequently since this is exactly how I feel about the ocean and I am drawn there once a year to get my “fix.” Customers have asked me to expound on Oceana’s story so I finally gave a possible scenerio concerning her life and included it in my book, Layers. You can click here to go to my etsy site where you can read more about my book.

Before I ever started using the very difficult, labor-intensive art form of fresco, I developed "fres-goe's." This is the name I have given to these special pieces of art. Below is the story and explanation that I attach to all of my "fres-go" pieces.

(Click to enlarge)

I created this particular "fres-go" on a a plain white tile. It fit nicely on the top of the cigar box. I added iridized glass tiles to the right side and large ball feet. I added the Oceana story to the inside top of the box and placed a heavy brocaded type material to the base.

Interior view of Oceana box

I painted it with a layer of Modge Podge and then applied a crackle texture to it. I experimented with using a layer of paint, then Elmer’s glue and while that glue was still wet, I gave it another layer of paint. This gave the piece a look of barn peeling. While this may be a good application for some projects, this was not the look I wanted. By using a tan crackle solution and then applying another light shade of green acrylic, I finally got the result I was striving for. The box now appears more sea foam and sand and has the feel of the ocean.

Painting the cigar box

I think she came out pretty nifty. Oh, and by the way, feel free to download a copy of my poem to use any way you’d like, just give me credit ok?

Unsatisfactory barn like texture

The desired crackle effect

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  1. Oh Cheryl, this is cool! Why don't you bring it to the gallery?


  2. I love your blog and look forward to reading the next one. Oceana is beautiful!


  3. This box is so beautiful. I have developed a similar passion for Whiskey tubes and boxes that has extended to pringles tubes, sweet boxes, cocoa tins... Packaging left over from Christmas. I love the thought of upcycling it into something beautiful and giving it a much loger shelf life than its original expectancy. Mine are not as wonderful as yours, I will have to be more ambitious xJ

  4. Hi Cheryl - Beautiful crackle effect, texture and color...neat to see your images of Mexico in light of my current vistas.
    Nice to hear from you!


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