Friday, June 21, 2019

Oodles of Earrings

I  belong to the "you can never have too many pairs of earrings" club.  I also love making them! For the June show, I created a lot of different surface sheets and canes, and created earrings from those creations.

Here are several pairs in different colors, shapes and finishes.  I have my favorites - do you?

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Pendant & Earring sets

Here are a few of the jewelry sets I made for the June show.  I hadn't realized how much I'd focused on the teal/aqua/purple color ways. Guess it's obvious how much I like those shades!

This first set is made with a feathered Ikat base.  I took the idea of splitting the pendant and joining it with a ribbon of clay from seeing some of Helen Breil's work.   I like the slightly asymmetrical look and adding the gold heshi and crystals really adds a special look to this piece.

These next 2 sets were based on Ikat stacks.  Although the colors are quite similar, the difference in width of the stripes, and the shading I used, does impart a different feel to each set.  I couldn't resist adding little flower elements to the one set.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

New Stroppel Canes

As I have mentioned, I've been working on lots of different pieces of jewelry for the June ACGOW show.  Not surprisingly, I also have accumulated a pile of "scrap" in a variety of colors and patterns.  What to do with it?... Why make a Stroppel cane, of course!  It's been quite a while since I've put one together, so I decided to make two, focusing on clay from a couple of different color ways.

Here are samples of some pieces made from the different canes.  Alice Stroppel originally used black clay between the color layers.  I find I also like other colors, particularly creams and whites. Interestingly enough, the design of these particular canes actually fit into the "Scenes from a passing Train" theme for the June show.

Friday, June 7, 2019

Bracelet/Earring Combos for the June Show

 While working on items for the June ACGOW Show, I also taught a workshop using the mokume gane technique.  Since I really like the mokume gane effect, I decided to make a few bracelet & earring sets.  The bracelets are polymer on brass channel cuffs.

I really liked the wavy effect in the blue set.  Perfect for summer months and time near the seashore.

Here is a red, gold and white set, also in colors just right for the summer months.

I'm including a set made with the "blurred landscape" sheet I made when working with Lindly Haunani.  It's fascinating to see all the different looks it is possible to get from polymer. It seems straight forward, but is really incredibly versatile.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

A Special Honor

As I mentioned a few posts ago, I entered some items in the Westerly Regional Art Show.  This is an annual event open to all artists who wish to submit pieces.  The judge for the show is selected from a field of accomplished individuals. The judge determines the pieces allowed into the show, and also selects particular pieces to receive various fine art and fine craft awards.

I am honored to have been selected to win the Alice Clark Hubbard Award in recognition of excellence in fine crafts.  The piece that won is the round green pin/pendant titled "first buds" that I showed on my April 29th post.  What a pleasant surprise!

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

ACGOW June Show Theme

Next month at the Westerly Gallery, I am one of two featured artists.   For June, the theme is "Scene From a Train:  Fleeting Moments."  As I looked for inspiration for my pieces to fit the theme, I remembered annual family trips taken from California to points all over the West and across the Midwest.  Although we traveled by car, the view out the windows was quite similar to those we would have glimpsed from the freight trains we saw as they traveled, paralleling our road.
I can recall mile after mile of fields filled with crops.  Some of the crops, like corn, were planted in straight rows, making stripes on the landscape. Others, such as beans, were bushy, blurring the lines between the plants.  There were fields of flowers abloom with amazing colors, and pastureland dotted with animals.  In the mountains, there were indistinct landscapes that still retained different colors and textures at each layer.  

For this show, I have created several different polymer design sheets that reflect the images I recall.  Some of those sheets are evident in the pins I showed here in recent blog posts.  Today, I'm going to share some earrings that also fit the theme.  Most of these pieces have a high gloss finish. The first photo shows a landscape in the distance, with distinct colors melding.

 The purple and the copper and black pairs represent plowed furrows.  The purple is a field in bloom, while the earth tones are from a field awaiting planting.

The purple and pink pair is again a landscape, blurred from the speed of the passer-by.  Finally, the black and silver set has an ordered row appearance, in a more elegant approach.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

A Few More Pins

Here are a few more collage pins.  These are so fun to put together!  I tried a couple of different design ideas, including layering pieces and using textures.

This first pin has a little bunch of berries with leaves.

The next two photos show a rather geometric pin that can be worn in more than one way.
This pink pin shows the "snowy" effects from using white embossing powder in the clay.

Monday, May 6, 2019

New Collage Pins

As you could tell from my previous post, I had a lot of fun making a variety of design sheets and working on Lindly Haunani's collage pins.  Once I got home, I was still itching to make more collage pins using some of the sheets I'd made, as well as adding some new ones to the mix. The first pin I made was this one in oranges and pinks.
I was much more angular in my cuts than Lindly had been, and I like the fact that this pin seems to be able to be worn in more than one direction.  You can see tiny white flecks on this pin.  They come from the embossing powder I added to the white polymer that was used in the process of creating the design sheets.  It adds such a neat effect!

Next, I decided to make a very angular, rather vertical design.  These last 2 photos show the results of this experiment.  I like the strips of black separating the fields of color - a very definite contrast.  Once again, I am struck at how much color harmony is evident amongst the different patterns.  These are great examples of the thought process behind the techniques Lindly has developed.  I feel fortunate to be able to take classes with her.

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

New Ideas from Lindly

One of the workshops I took at Clayathon 2019 was called "Sagacious Shale",  taught by Lindly Haunani. Lindly is, to me, the queen of color.  I love the way she leads students through both her thought processes and the actual physical representation of those ideas.

Every time I take a workshop with her, I learn something new, and this class was no exception. Our resulting products were pin or pendant collages, in which the colors of the patterns we each used were in perfect harmony, even though there was great variation amongst the group.

One thing Lindly introduced which I had not seen her use before was to mix some white embossing powder into the white clay we used in various design sheets.  When the pieces were baked, the embossing powder suddenly appeared as little white dots - almost like snow flakes!

This posting shows some of the pins I made using Lindly's sheeting ideas and the white embossing powder.

Monday, April 29, 2019

Regional Show Entries

It's almost May, and that means the Westerly Artist's Cooperative is holding their annual Regional Art Show.  This show is juried by an outside judge, someone who is not familiar with any of the cooperative members.  This means that even member artists who normally show in the gallery may not have their work approved and entered in the show.

This year, I decided to try some new items.  These are pieces I haven't tried before, and it was fun to experiment.  I have no idea if they'll appeal to the judge, but I certainly learned a few things as I tried to make these pieces, and it was a good experience.   Below are the 3 pieces I entered.

 These first photos are of a hollow convertible pin/pendant I made with an opening in the center of the top section.  Emerging out of the hole are several little pearl white buds - the "first buds" of spring.  It can be pinned, or a chain can be added through the loops in the back.

This next photo shows a pendant and accompanying earrings.  I've called these pieces "Pearls floating downstream."  I usually work with Premo! clay, but these pieces were made with Kato.  I wanted a really strong clay that could be rolled thin and still stand up to being manipulated.  The Kato worked perfectly.  you may not be able to see it in the photo, but there is a thin white layer of clay between the blue and copper sheets, and it just peeks out along the edges adding a bit of contrast.

The last photo is of a 20" necklace strung with Swarovski crystal pearls, and silver and crystal rondelles.  The five polymer beads have a very high shine and are larger than the beads I usually make for a necklace arrangement.  I really love the way the Ikat pattern in the bottom section of each bead adds such an interesting contrast to the top section.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Striped Skinner Blend Stack = Fun!

I've just gotten back from Clayathon 2019 in Galloway, New Jersey.  What a great polymer conference!  Excellent classes offered prior-to and after the weekend of the event itself, with plenty of demos to attend in between if desired.  There was a huge hall with lots and lots of great polymer folks willing to share their ideas and expertise, engage in problem solving, or just enjoy friendly conversation.  Obviously, you can tell I had a really good time.  Over the next few weeks, I'll be posting here more about the conference, so check back!
Today, I'd like to share some pieces I made during some "play on your own" time after learning how to make a striped Skinner blend.  I loved doing this, and it was fun watching everything work out as it was supposed to! Check out the class for May!

Monday, March 25, 2019

Crackle in Golden Green

Here are the other sets of the new crackle technique I said I'd post.  These sets are on white with alcohol inks in golden-red, yellow and green shades.  These pieces have a really lovely glow.  I'll be experimenting more with the DecoArt Perfect Crackle.  It really makes interesting patterns in the clay.