By Samantha Danson
Today we visit with Cheryl Black Jackson, long time repainter, teacher, mother of teens and recent world traveler (she just returned from South Africa)!
How many shows have you been involved with?
I have been in 2 TRS projects thus far: the Once Upon a Time series where I created Cinderella and the Star Wars project where I made Original Princess Leia.
How long does a TRS project generally take for you?
I tend to start a doll as soon as the project begins so that I don't procrastinate. I was one of the first to finish OUAT and in the middle of the Star Wars because of the hard-headed reroot that I had to do on Leia. Rerooting a doll can take me up to a week as I have to break it into smaller pieces of time. I am a teacher and mom to 2 busy teenagers so time is a precious commodity. The repaint generally takes me a few days until I am happy with them. I usually edit after taking sets of pictures because these always show me tweaks I need to make.
What's the hardest/best thing about participating?
The hardest issues for me are time management and creating the
likenesses. I feel that my strengths are making pretty dolls.
Character dolls are more difficult for me to create. I look forward to
this project as it gives me the freedom to produce a beautiful
Sleeping Beauty from my imagination rather than trying to match an
I think my favorite part of participating in these projects is
discussing and collaborating with other artists. They understand the
challenges of working on dolls and help with tips and suggestions. It
is such a supportive group that really cares about each other, both
personally and professionally.
What's your personal favorite TRS achievement?
I think that I was most proud of the reroot and hairstyle of the
Original Leia. I wanted to do justice to the memory of Carrie Fisher.
What's the most expensive element you've incorporated?
The most expensive accessories are probably going to be with this
current doll so I won't talk too much about that yet!
What excites you most about this show?
I am most excited about this show because the theme is so much fun.
Why did you pick your character?
I like fairy tales and princesses and was really excited to get my
absolute favorite, Aurora.
How did you decide your concept?
I found an inspiration picture on the internet and am pulling some
ideas from that while trying to put my own spin on it. I am still
playing around with the details of the doll but she will have elements
of the trials that she is put through with just a touch of Maleficent.
What will be your greatest challenge in creating her?
My biggest challenge will be the costume. I am not a regular costumer
so I am being creative with some design ideas.
I am really excited to see these dolls all come to life. That is is
probably one of the most exciting parts...seeing the final reveal with
all the dolls together.
Us too, Cheryl! Thank you so much for spending time here today!