Keepsake Artist Robert Hurlburt was asked to give a little more background on some of his 2018 ornaments. Here’s what he had to say!

Robert: Starting out on a sculpt digitally is great for “roughing it out” with quick basic forms to help you problem solve before you start sculpting/creating the detail on screen, all while trying to imagine the size and feel without a physical piece to hold. Digital allows you to very easily adjust size and proportions, and you can keep more than one version to choose from when determining the final look.

1932 Buick Fire Engine
16th in the Fire Brigade series.

Robert: It was great to talk to the folks at the Firehouse that maintain the fire truck and had a hand in rebuilding it, especially little details like the top half of a “milk can” they used to create the filler neck and lid for the water tank. They made us feel really welcome and even got the truck out for us to ride, which I hadn’t even thought would be possible. We always like to get the photos ourselves, and usually the firehouses are always so enthusiastic, that we get plenty of great pictures to work from. While working on the Fire Brigade series I always think of my best friend Bill who was a fireman who lost his life after answering a call. I always wish I could show him what I make every year.

1968 Chevrolet Nova SS
28th in the Classic American Cars series.

Robert: I love older cars! I had a 1965 Nova, a 1969 Mustang, a late 60s dodge Dart with a Hemi, and a 1977 Firebird. Sadly, I made choices to sell—with regrets always. When I was young, I did some restoration and worked in a body shop, so I appreciate the work that goes into it. This year’s ornament made me think of my oldest brother and his car (a Chevelle Super Sport) that he snuck out late at night to race every weekend that he could.


Cinderellas Castle
Disney Cinderella

Robert: You get several of the princesses together and with that castle backdrop all lit, and the music, it makes for a real celebration of each princess individually. The size and lighting effect timed to the music is very unique.


Santas Sleigh Dome
Heritage Collection

Robert: It was challenging to figure out how it needs to be sculpted to work with the glass blowers and how it will be constructed. I love the freedom of creating your own design elements and sculpting it as you go and making changes as you see fit, while trying out different paint schemes to get to the final look.