Sunday, 29th July 2012
The first Precious Moments figurine was on 1976 entitled "Love One Another", the teardrop-eyed couple on the stump. Sam Butcher was overjoyed when he first held his creation converted into a 3D form. The artist got his inspiration seeing his daughter Tammy sitting on a cut-down tree trunk with her uncle. The "Original 12" pieces created in 1978 were the first set of figurines sold to the public.
How these touching figurines are made? Each piece is carefully crafted and it made of fine bisque porcelain. Set to fire for 2 rounds then individually painted and hand-finished by skilled artists. Then lastly, final special firing is applied to pop-up the palette and make it more inviting. It would take around seven days just to make one figurine and the number of molds may depend on the design. Sometimes it requires more than a dozen of molds to put up complicated figurines.
Check out this video from youtube posted by Tushin1 on How Precious Moments Figurines and Collectibles are Made.
The Artist room is like a celebration space for Sam Butcher to remember all his hard works in painting the chapel for a lot of years. He described himself as the worst critic of his own work. On one of the frames in the room, he stated, "Every time I visit the chapel, I see something I want to change. I am my own worst critic and I try to correct the murals that I am not completely satisfied with."
Sam also displayed his favorite figurines in the room. I found the early musical angels figurines. It was very inspiring to read the stories for each figurine. One of the stories that moved me was the "Press On".