Polymer that remembers

Luann Udell's Lascaux horses in polymer clay
Williamson's distressed beads
Elvira Lopez del Prado's polymer bangles

Polymer clay simulates nothing better than ivory and bone. Here are three recent examples that caught my eye.

Luann Udell (those are her Lascaux horse sculptures) updates ancient stories with modern artifacts. “I use these modern artifacts to retell ancient stories, stories I feel have much to teach us today,” she says. Her post about telling stories through art is a good Monday read.

Genevieve Williamson’s distressed, faceted, and textured beads seem to have been unearthed from another time as well.

Elvira Lopez del Prado uses fragments of handwritten messages to hint at old stories and past lives on her newest line of bangles.

In the US, it’s Memorial Day…a good day for remembering and retelling stories.

Feel Good Friday

Arendt's polymer rot ringel

The polymer sculptures from Berlin’s Angelika Arendt make me feel good. Words escape me and I can’t explain.

I’ve learned to respect my gut which started singing the moment I landed on her site. The colors, the complexity, the textures. Even the blobs are appealing. I’ll just go with it. Here’s her Flickr page.

Arendt's polymer duschhaube

Speaking of feeling good, I was pleased to see my work and my faux bosom shown on Julie Eakes’ site. Look only at the work and ignore the augmentation Julie added in Photoshop. Have a feel good weekend.

Toops/Adams site

Cynthia Toops and her husband, glass artist Dan Adams, have launched a new site with loads of mouthwatering work, old and new.

While Cynthia is known for her figurative polymer micromosaic pieces, in the last few years she has been concentrating on thin sheet work, creating the cone and claw necklaces and the rolodex series. Cynthia will teach at Arrowmont in September. This comes to us via the DailyArtMuse site.

You may enjoy revisiting this Seattle Art Museum video about Cynthia and this earlier post.

Landscape and cat canes

Maine Coon Cat polymer clay cane by Jayne Dwyer

I’m mesmerized by landscape polymer artists like Jayne Dwyer of Maine. I went in search of more of Jayne’s Paper Moon jewelry and found a bit here and here and on Facebook.

She doesn’t make it easy to feature her work but I couldn’t resist.

This Maine Coon Cat was made from her recycled gray clay.

Jayne’s scenes will put old-time caners in mind of Mike Buessler. Slices of these vista canes stand on their own, no embellishment necessary.


All blessings and good wishes have been gratefully received. We said goodbye to an elderly family member, patched up a young one with a successful surgery and are doing our best to look after a dear friend. I’m back in service.

Barbee concentrates on composition

Meisha Barbee current polymer work

When I asked extruder extraordinaire Meisha Barbee what kind of extruder setup she had, she admitted that her equipment was nothing special. She works in small batches and spends more time selecting colors and building a pattern library of small canes than she spends in extruding.

Meisha sent along a luscious sampling of her current work. (Here’s an earlier post.) Her colorways fit into small boxes that she carries between her studio and her gallery.

With her variety of components built, Meisha gets down to the business of composing, balancing, building the elements into finished pieces. It’s a good lesson in planning and prioritizing to start our week.

Brandon’s faux Mexican pottery

Brandon's Cinco de Mayo polymer necklace

Our flower power week ends with fiesta polymer clay beads from Arizona’s Anita Brandon. They’re what she calls “faux Mexican pottery” and made of polymer over an ultralight base to keep them lightweight. Cane slice appliques give the beads extra dimension.

Anita wanted to capture the excitement of the Cinco de Mayo fiestas she remembered as a child. Have an exciting weekend.

Her monarch and morning glory necklace is not to be missed either.

Lombardi’s buds

Lombardi's Italian petal earrings

If yesterday’s polymer petals started you thinking, you’ll want to study Marina Lombardi’s version of flower buds as well.

Lombardi's polymer rose garden necklace

Her approach is more lyrical and less graphic than Kim Korringa’s. You can see that both artists (Kim in California and Marina in Rome) were inspired by the beauty dripping from hanging pots at this time of year.

Marina’s polymer roses woven on wire with crystals and seed beads creates a wearable garden.

Korringa’s elegant solution

We gushed over Kim Korringa’s simple solution to her hanging blossom earring design. She bakes scrap polymer clay armatures with pins embedded in them and forms the earrings over the bases.

She lightly drapes petals made from four cane slices over the forms, offsetting the layers.

After baking, the petals easily pop off the mounds for assembling and finishing. Kim generously agreed to share her elegant solution with you.