Thursday, April 22, 2010

Busy With Polymer Clay and Seedlings for Spring

I may have been quiet on my blog for the last while but I haven't been idle. The addiction to polymer clay continues and with the expansion of the polymer clay section at Michaels it's become easier to pick up some of the latest tools I've read about. Among them is a leaf embossing set which, in a flash, creates lovely, uniform, detailed leaves. To me the drape of the leaf shape on a necklace is lovely and since I got the set I've probably made at least a hundred leaves.
I love to use the Pearl Ex powders on the raw clay for metallic effects and I also love the new foils I've been trying out which are self adhesive.
I'm excited about a new type of UV resin too and just got the resin and little UV oven. Because it's seed starting time, and the weather has been nice enough to do yard work, I haven't tried it yet. I'll be posting my results, once I have some. I did discover another gloss/resin product which I just use out of the bottle, dries transparent, can be layered and is fairly durable. I used it on the eagle pendant but the angle of the shots hides it. The new UV resin cures hard enough to sand and carve and because it cures in UV light it shouldn't slump or soften in the sun.
The allure of polymer clay is the endless potential for self expression. The smooth texture of both the soft clay and the finished product is also highly addictive. Jewelry made from it quickly assumes skin temperature, is light and never feels icy cold.
Egg shapes are fun too and to make the vessels in the shot here I used a marble egg as a form. I was pleased to find that all three sat evenly without stands but for real stability some type of stand would be handy too. I want something that works without detracting from the shape of the egg.
The two textured pieces in shades of green and copper, without any holes, were textured with a sheet I made myself with a cuticle pusher and Bend and Bake Sculpey. It's fun to make my own texture sheets, but the purchased ones are great too for different techniques

The latest project for my gardening started on March 31 when I started a number of different seeds including two types of tomatoes, cayenne peppers, nicotania, impatiens, begonias and geraniums. They are all doing well and I wanted to add a shot or two of their latest progress. The begonias and impatiens are still quite small but it's amazing how quickly they grow. Soon I'll be giving each of my seedlings their own pots and I plan to start some allysum and marigolds within the next week or two. I will post my gardening results as the season progresses too.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Canes, Kaleidoscopes, and Polymer Clay

I've been busy with my art in various forms, as always, and have just lately rediscovered polymer clay. One of the main attractions is the amazing palette of colors and the resulting effects when combined, either formally as in a cane or just random mixing and then slicing. I'm also so happy with the smooth glass like finish which results from using the newer clays and a triple (wet) sanding method I now use on all of my beads.
I've been enjoying playing with the symmetry which can be obtained when slicing even random canes. The photos I post here are mainly pictures of my learning process, in which I'm trying for more refinement in my finished work. I still have a ways to go but here are some examples of what I've been doing.