Tips and Tricks

Collaged transfers

maunsell_hollow_transfer

These glowing hollow beads from Claire Maunsell are patterned with collaged pieces of laser transfers. The elegant mix of patterns shine through dark and distressed surfaces. The combination lends her beads an aura of a rich and mysterious past.

Claire’s added a number of collaged and hollow beads on her Flickr pages. Go there for your first-of-the-week jolt of inspiration.

We happened to be working on laser transfers in our weekend class in Minnesota. See how Maureen Carlson turned the transfer of her sprite into a sculpture and see some of our class pictures on Instagram.

Polymer cover-up

Petricoin on PCDaily

Pennsylvania’s Beth Petricoin loves polymer and upcycling. A favorite shirt ruined by bleach spots could have been discarded or demoted but Beth couldn’t let that happen. She decided to hide the problem with a radiating design in polymer.

She fabricated the components from thin pieces of polymer cut out and applied with Sculpey Bake and Bond. “I worked in segments of about 6″ by 8″, curing in between segments to keep the areas for curing totally flat in the oven,” says Beth.

She details her project step-by-step in a blog post. She even laundered the shirt after finishing to test the glue’s strength and gives it a definite thumbs up.

“I can hardly wait to jazz up another piece of clothing! I can also see this idea put into use to cover up unwanted holes in clothing….lots of ideas running around in my head,” she admits.

Follow other of Beth’s polymer experiments on Flickr, Etsy, Pinterest and her blog. What’s in your closet begging for an upcycle?

Transferred history

Burgess on PCDaily

Since you may have some playtime this weekend, I’ll leave you with the UK’s Jon Burgess. His sites are mecca for those who like abstract, geometric, random, organic or fractal-based patterns.

Jon’s been a longtime writer, illustrator and designer. “I have been exploring the backwaters of the various bits of software I use for many years now but have only recently found practical outlets for the designs I produce,” he explains.

Of course polymer is one of the practical outlets he hit upon. His tiles, coasters and beads often contain his image transfers whose hard digital lines have been softened with elegant, distressed edges and thin washes of ink.

Sure, the 1-2-3 polymer transfer steps he shows are straightforward. When he gets to step 12, the fun begins. From this almost-a-tutorial you get the idea of how he batters his pieces to inject them with history and intrigue.

Start on his Pinterest site to understand his aesthetic. Try Tumblr, his blog, Flickr, Etsy and Facebook. Then luxuriate in the patterns.

Matchy Monday

Phamova on PCDaily

Perhaps we should call the first posts of the week Matchy Mondays because it’s on Monday that I’m most drawn to polymer works that coordinate with PCD’s colors.

Consider these beautifully graduated and sharply creased beads from the Czech Republic’s Dana Phamova. She plays with the light and shadow caused by the bent surfaces. Here’s another of her light/shadow experiments.

Her beautiful Skinner-blended colors are accented by a few judiciously placed light colored dots. A close look shows that the texture is created with hand-applied pin pricks. She shows a work-in-process shot here.

Phamova on PCDaily

Dana calls this series Dreaming Cucarachas. Cockroaches? That title breaks the zen mood, doesn’t it? You can catch the vibe again (lots of polymer scratching and distressing) on Facebook and Pinterest.

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  • I'm Cynthia Tinapple, an artist, curator, and leader in the polymer clay community for over 20 years.

    On this blog I showcase the best polymer clay art online to inspire and encourage you. I also send out weekend extras in the premium newsletter, StudioMojo.

    You can find my book, Polymer Clay Global Perspectives, on Amazon.


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