Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Peeking Inside Hollow Lentils

Oh, yes!!
I love the whole idea of "peeking inside" a bead. If you scroll through my past postings to August 18, you'll see I was playing then with a "peek inside." At that time, I used filled shapes covered with mica shift. The openings in the top of the lentil shapes revealed various inclusions, such as crystals and enamel flowers.
During the past couple of weeks, I decided to give hollow lentil beads a try. These are incredibly light weight, and allow a different method of opening to the inside. Here are some of my new pieces. The two on the left are hung on wire chains. Directly below, peeking inside these three pieces reveals glass pearls, a crystal, and an oval-cut stone.

The bottom photo shows something else new. I decided to see how things would look if the front section was larger and more open. This also gave me the opportunity to use some liquid polymer pieces I made. I love the effect they create in these focals. In case you're curious, the middle piece is a hollow lentil with mica shift veneer.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Tear Away Technique

What a great way to make textures and designs on your polymer pieces! I'd first learned about the Tear Away Technique in a metal clay (PMC) workshop. Celie Fago was given credit for inventing the technique which allows one to create textures from black and white drawings - either your own, or from the numerous copyright free publications available. The process uses polymer clay to create the textures. The texture is transferred paper, and then is used to texture the PMC. The finished silver pieces are lovely and unique.
However- drum roll! - the applications of this technique don't stop there! I'm sure other folks have discovered this, too, but it was a revelation to me. I looked at the polymer piece left after the paper texture was removed and realized that the design in the polymer could be enhanced with paints or other colorizations, and the polymer could then be used in other ways, such as in jewelry.
So, I went on a binge making tear away papers for PMC and then using the polymer pieces for pendants. Had to share the results! Yes - one of the pieces does not use the tear away texture. It's just based on an extruded cane.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

More 3-D

I'm really enjoying the feeling of manipulating the clay into little floral shapes. Here, I started with a Skinner blend-shaded bull's eye cane to create these calla lilies. Love the intensity of the color!

And I'm still on a bit of a rose-roll... I decided to try a different sort of pin, so purchased some stick pin backs, and set to work. After making a couple of wild roses in matte colors, I decided to see what would happen if I tossed in some embossing powders. I think the result is quite festive - what do you think?

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Roses for the Holidays

Roses are one of my favorite things to make. Perhaps it's because they're my "birth-flower" or the fact that roses come in a myriad of colors, or maybe it's just that they're fun to make. :) Whatever the reason, I enjoy making them and putting them in different configurations. The other evening, I was playing with a bit of clay, making it into a square....which became a rectangle...which became a pointed rectangle....with a twist. Suddenly, it seemed I had just made the perfect vase to hold a single rose. I custom mixed some mauve tones, and here are the results.
These first ones have a matching tube in the back to hold a chain. I'm also experimenting with pin backs. Here's a photo of a green/red/white rosevase from the back. Notice the pin back is hidden by a leaf.

This last photo shows a pendant hanging from black wrapped wire.