Layl McDill digs in

Layl McDill follows her own path to polymer success on PolymerClayDaily.com

Minnesota’s Layl McDill makes large canes that she reduces from the middle, making the two halves look like large Hershey’s kisses.

It works and she ends up with very little waste. Here it is in a time-lapse video.

Layl works in unorthodox ways with off-brand clays and homegrown techniques. She teaches without a pasta machine and doesn’t feel the need for many tools.

The stories on her blog and her dream-come-true studio will make you a believer in the value of persisting and marching to the beat of your own drummer.

So put down your tools and check in on StudioMojo for the rest of this story about the class Layl taught in Ohio this week. It’s refreshing and a little disorienting to forego our tool addictions and let our hands dig in.

Alluring or menacing

We recoil but can't dismiss the beauty of this brooch from Anna Nel on PolymerClayDaily.com

Your reflexes may make you flinch but the colors will make you look twice at this brooch from Poland’s Anna Nel.

The snake is covered with slices of a mosaic-like cane in stunning blues, rusts, gold, and white. Its head is covered with a slice that’s matched in a Natasha bead style.

It’s menacing in the most beautifully alluring way.

Bullseye hits the spot

Kate Lee Foley's bullseye earrings hit the spot on PolymerClayDaily.com

Some days, the trusty bullseye cane really hits the spot. Take these earrings from Australia’s Kate Lee Foley.

Nothing pretentious or complicated about these swingy cutouts. The yellow background picks up one of the cane colors. Kate calls her earrings “…a little Gustave Klimt.”

Stuck for an idea? Try a bullseye.

The fashion of Fall

Christine Pecaut's necklace mimics falling leaves on PolymerClayDaily

This necklace from France’s Christine Pecaut (Chifonie) reminds us that falling leaves will quickly be back in fashion.

Christine’s leaves are a combination of shapes, textures, and stripes bisected by thin spines of twisted clay rolls or sharply cut slivers.

The angles mimic the way leaves fall from the trees and a few random dark beads break up the symmetry. Is it fall in your studio?

Spikey bracelet for a weaver

Rebecca Thickbroom weaves coastal influents into polymer on PolymerClayDaily.com

London’s Rebecca Thickbroom created this “Spikey Isle” bracelet for weaver Camilla Thomas.

Rebecca picks up the subtle colors, designs, and shapes of this fiber artist for Camilla’s commission. Even the findings could have been washed up onshore. It’s a combination of ancient coasts, quiet colors and modern patterns.

Explore the two artists’ sites to see how their aesthetics mesh.

Family story in polymer

Monica Rotti turns photo transfers into an heirloom on PolymerClayDaily

Italy’s Monica Rotta features family members in this mixed media framed keepsake.

Black and white photos are transferred to pastel-colored polymer and then carefully textured and embellished. She backs each with a contrasting layer and mounts them on a painted page.

The Rumi quote that illustrates the piece reads, “Love is from infinity and will remain until eternity.” There’s a powerful story here.

The loving and thoughtful touches that Monica has added assure that this assemblage will become an heirloom.

We’ll be talking on StudioMojo about the power of doing what you love as Monica has clearly done. How do we go about finding and following that thread of deep interest? We’ll talk about a couple of upcoming events that center on just that. Join us! 

Explosions of color

Lindsay Locatelli combines color and dimension on a volcanic cuff on PolymerClayDaily

Small volcanos threaten to spew color all over the place on Lindsay Locatelli’s latest cuff.

Painted spouts rise up and give the piece a weirdly satisfying dimension. Then just when you’re creeped out by the spitting spouts, you notice the sumptuous gold leaf on the interior. This cuff delights on all cylinders.

Lindsay’s toddler doesn’t seem to have slowed down her creative output. She’s teaching a 4-day class in Wisconsin next weekend. Don’t miss her spiky earrings on Instagram.

Cheeky slab polymer

Katie Long brings Brooklyn to Australia on PolymerClayDaily

Australia’s Katie Long (Hellotherecheeky) wakes up your Wednesday with this in-your-face color palette.

You’ve probably noticed how fond the Aussies are of what they’re calling “Slab Polymer” (google it). Lay down a base slab of clay and layer on tiny pieces of design. Flatten and cut out shapes you can use. They’ve become masters at it.

It’s the punchy, fearless colors and layers of abstract elements that set off a big YES in my gut. Katie adds a coat of resin for shine. She’s on Instagram here. This collection is called “Brooklyn”…gotta love that.

Second looks, second versions

Why a dot necklace deserved a second look on PolymerClayDaily
Why a dot necklace deserved a second look on PolymerClayDaily

The first version of this necklace was suspended from a hook in my studio for years. I liked it but I just wasn’t sure. “Too simple? Too spare?” I asked myself (it’s here on my Instagram)

This year I thought, “I really like that necklace.” I pulled if off the hook and every time I wore it someone commented. What held me back?

I’m betting that you have pieces in your studio that call to you and deserve a second look. What holds you back?

The tubes are extruded polymer and the dots are added in a “tab and slot” step. This is my 2019 Colorado version modeled here by Katie Way’s daughter, Taylor. My mind is buzzing with upgrades.

Sending happy out

Pamela Carman sends happy out for your Monday on PolymerClayDaily.com

“It’s the joy of riotous color and pattern that drives me to create my work. It is my way of sending happy out into the world,” says Florida’s Pamela Carmen.

Nothing better than a bird of happiness to fly into your Monday. Can you picture the supply of canes Pamela must have on hand to feather her large menagerie? See her creations on Flickr. 

Her entry in a recent show called Woof, Meow, Chirp, and Slither: Artists interpret the world of pets earned a top award from Florida CraftArt. When you send happy out, some of it returns to you.

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