Simple Stuff

I like these beads from Marie Segal’s April 15 workshop with the San Diego Guild. These beads illustrate my "keep it simple" rant of the last few days, They’re based on two or three canes which are reconfigured into a multitude of shapes.

A few years ago I watched Pier Voulkos take one simple cane slice and in the space of five minutes whip it into a dozen shapes. (I resurrected this link from a 2001 workshop.)

That cane manipulation took incredible dexterity of hand and imagination. It’s that freshness and vitality that I’ve been looking for this week. Thanks Pier, thanks Marie.

A Little Bird Told Me

These teeny birds on my shelf remind me that it’s nearly spring. And they tell me that everything needn’t be precious and exquisite. Sometimes simple and carefree is best.

I bought these polymer birds at the local art college sale. The young artist felt she was overcharging me when she priced them at $1 each. Such a deal! Each bird has character and exudes happiness.

After weeks of looking at wonderful skillfully-crafted works, I’m just a bit tired of the intensity. I think I’ll look for simple for the next few days. No polymer links today. You may want to see what the 20-somethings are doing with jewelry. Just for grins.

It’s Come to This

Call it spring fever. Call it desperation. I’ve got nothing but myself to write about today so here’s the latest inlaid bowl that my husband turned and I inlaid with polymer.

After years of making polymer jewelry, I moved over to the housewares department. It was great fun to add knobs, switchplates and lights in our little Marrakech bathroom. The sink is a walnut bowl inlaid with matching polymer, naturally. And the tub surround is roofing copper. Add candles and bathsalts and a bath becomes a very exotic experience.

So there you have it. Now all I have to do is find something for tomorrow!

Multiple Palettes

This exhibit from last fall at the White Lotus Gallery in Eugene, Oregon, caught my eye. Multiple Palettes/Varied Visions: 30 Jewelers Explore Color covers a variety of media and their emphasis on color is instructive even though only a few (MaryandLouAnn and FordForlano) are polymer artists.

You’ll find lots of inspiration here. Be sure to visit the site of metalsmiths Barbara Minor and Christopher Hentz, Lulu Smith, Ellen Wieske, Deb Karash and others for the complete color experience.

Dittmar’s Guys

Portland, Oregon's Meredith Dittmar first started sculpting while trying to avoid getting her computer science degree. After graduating she worked as an interactive designer/programmer and her digital works have been shown in international film festivals, exhibits and magazines.

For the past ten years, she's put the digital realm on the backburner to pursue her three-dimensional passion. The first "guys" were made in 1994 when she discovered polymer clay.

Ever since that day, a steady flow has continued. Thousands have been created and no two were alike until the recent "clones" series. "Guys" are made out of premo and flexible sculpey.

They're quirky, colorful and fresh. And you can put them on your phone or watch a Converse Video (scroll through until you hit "Polymer Playground") of these creatures.

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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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