Tuesday, August 25, 2015

ABC, It's Easy as 123.

At the beginning of this PCAGOE Challenge called "Letters", one of our members posted the Jackson 5 song in my title as a lighthearted inspiration for us. I got a real kick out of it especially the clothes back then reminding of a time when that fashion was cool. Thank you Betsy, it put a smile on my face.
I wanted to make something that I knew would be useful for me and my button inventory was in great need of replenishing so I decided to make buttons with words spelled out. I chose "hope" and "love" because those are the most important words I could think of. I'm imagining a knitter making a sweater and wanting my buttons for closures. That also is making me smile.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Ironcraft is Going to the Fair!

This is definitely time for fairs. Up here, there are everywhere, every weekend. I just love them! I love the sounds, the colors and the various activities going on. When looking at the list of categories, I stopped at the dolls because I just finished a doll that I think would blow away the competition or at least get a few judges scratching their heads wondering where this one came from. lol
Her name is Queen and she is part of an online doll-making course I've been taking. Her body, arms and head are made of wire. Her face is sculpted polymer and her dress is an experiment I call polymerized fabric.
I love sculpting faces and see the expressions they have when I'm done. I know I should work of controlling the expressions with a turned up cheek and smile, frowning brows and such. I so enjoy letting the clay decide what it will look like and the comment it will make on the world using only an expression. Do you have a crafted item that you never know what it will look like before it's done? I love those the best and the freedom it gives.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Ironcraft Says Keep It Small!

Summer has certainly kept me busy all over the place. I'm glad to say I've been creating more than I have lately so it feels good. So, this Ironcraft challenge crept up on my pretty fast. Luck would have it I have been creating hair accessories. I got into a craze of making hair accessories of all kinds; French barrettes, hair pins and bobby pins. I'm not sure what started this fascination with making hair things. My hair is super short. I don't use any of them. They sell at my shows rather well so I know they will go to a good home. I just keep making them because it's fun.
I hope you've found something "fun" to do this summer.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Watch Out for the Fairies!

You may not have noticed them. Fairies are notorious for keeping a low profile, not wanting to be found out by us humans. But if you look very closely with a heart filled with wonder, they will let you see the lights shining from inside their homes. I saw one once, in a dream, and made this nightlight to show my vision. This house is a replica of a home of a Sand Fairy. They are great friends with ants and nestle in among them. If you ever come across a field of anthills you may see them too. I wouldn't recommend going into the field of anthills. But if you wait, you might see the lights of the fairy houses in the dark.
OK, I made all that up but I did make a fairy house which I turned into a nightlight and it reminds me of the shape of those anthills you see in Australia. My fairy house would blend in well with the shades of the grass and sand camouflaging it well from people who do not know what to look for.
The coloring was done with pan pastels, a trick shown to me by fellow artist Izzy Hinther. I love the look of baked stone it gives to the polymer clay. The bottom is felt and you lift the whole house to put a string of battery operated led lights inside. The lights are quite bright in the dark.
Let me know what you think and if you've ever dreamed of seeing a real fairy house.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Ironcraft Blue!

This, being the 14th challenge of 2015, is an exploration of the color blue. I love blue and I hadn't realized how much until I started thinking about what I could make with this color. I realized that I am surrounded with the color. From the blue skies outside, to my sheets and pillowcases in my bedroom I have so many shades of blue around me. I find it calming as well as energizing.
I chose to show this new barrette that I have made. My hair is quite short but I've been making barrettes galore. I am exploring this form and I know they will do well at my shows. They will find a home somewhere. This one is blue and purple inks on white clay. I like the organic look of it and of course, all things must have blue!
Do you feel the calming effect of blue? I know I do. It also gives me energy in the morning when I wake up to a sunny blue sky. Does it affect you the same way or do you have another color that is more inspiring?

Thursday, June 25, 2015

A Challenge By Any Other Name

This month's challenge for the PCAGOE was creating a texture plate and making something from the plate. I thought this would be easy. How humbling these challenges are to me. Every time I think it will be easy and every time I find myself in front of my limitations and asked to push beyond them.
I use texture all the time but creating a texture sheet is something I have very little experience with. n I was racking my brain trying to choose what I should make from the said sheet before I had made the sheet."Make the texture sheet then the creation will come." I read that comment in our forum from a fellow member and realized I was going about it all wrong. Then I saw Lisa Rapp's piece and a light went on. I'll let her explain how she made her piece but I took the idea and went another way. Thank you so much for the inspiration Lisa.
Creating a mokume gane stack of color I pressed my sculptural textured sheet into the clay then started slicing off the top until I liked what I saw. For the flower sheet I used extruded triangle shape clay to build my design. I figured that the point of the triangle would make a deep impression into my stack of colours. I was pleased with the results. I chose a simple design for my first try but I might try it again with something more intricate. The finished piece makes a great design for a greeting card. My sister's birthday is coming up. I already have her card all done. Hope she likes it.
Let me know what you think of my card and your experiences if ever you have tried to put the cart before the horse.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Ironcraft Give Me an E!

This Ironcraft challenge is based on the letter 'E'. We had to let the letter inspire us. It came to me in minutes. I want to make earrings. It's summer and I wear more earrings in the summer. No hat to hide them or wool cap to get caught up in them. I have taken a long hiatus from making jewelry but earrings are always such fun to make.
If you read my last post, you saw that I used feather  canes to make Janis's feather boa. I decided to turn some of the leftover cane into cute earrings that just scream summer. I had made a monarch butterfly wings cane as well. I always get so many compliments on them when I wear them, so I'll keep making a few more designs and make a series called "Butterflies and Feathers". The ones in the photo are my first of this series. Hope you like them, they make me smile.