Charuau’s polymer galaxy

Céline Charuau’s new polymer “Beetles” cabochons with oxidized silver settings have a cross-century Mad Max look inspired by the work of jeweler Joanna Gollberg.

It’s refreshing when artists name their sources and even better when one medium affects another and moves it in a new direction.

Celine combines organic forms with metal in unusual ways. This year she seems to have moved from wire wrapping and stitching to prongs and bezels. Her polymer gems look like objects from another galaxy. Have a stellar weekend!

Survey/Book Giveaway

It’s your last chance to fill out the PCD survey. I’ve been overwhelmed by the response and your feedback is terrific. Thanks so much. The giveaway drawing winner (of Sherri Haab’s new metal clay book/DVD) will be announced on Monday.

Gone Fishing

SandrART’s Croatian summertime polymer playthings remind us what fun in the studio is all about. Forget serious and studied. Let your fingers do the walking and play.

Her bright colored fish on strings are simple and childlike. Her graduated band of layered polymer winds around to create an aerodynamic sealife pendant.

SandrART’s site is full of experiments that show a joyful approach to clay that we sometimes forget. Go fish!

Summer reading – Ford and Forlano

Ford and Forlano (Dave and Steve) slipped off my radar and when I went back to check their site, I felt like I’d taken a quick dip in the pool on a hot day. Their work instantly refreshes.

In recent work they’ve created an homage to Georgia O’Keeffe, toyed with Alexander Calder ideas, and been surprised by the popularity and wearability of their big pieces that they thought were only for museum display cases.

Even Ford/Forlano get rejected (gasp). You may be surprised at how they responded when a show they’d been in for years passed them over. Good summer reading here.

Feichtinger blends in

Fleichtinger's polymer brooch in graduated colors

Austria’s Carina Feichtinger knows her way around a Skinner blend. With a few beautiful gradations in polymer and a some clay cutters, she layers simple shapes onto brooches and pendants. The subtle shadings and a few metal clay embellishments give the pieces extra dimension.

Fleichtinger's pendant in Skinner Blended polymer

As a bonus, you’ll see a photo of the Austrian and German guild gang on Carina’s Flickr site. They gathered for a Christine Dumont workshop recently.

Survey Results

Your answers to the PCD survey have been very helpful in figuring out how to keep the site lively and on target. We’ll gather your answers Friday night and pick another giveaway winner. Keep ’em coming!

Katz gets her head on straight

To mark the end of her fifth decade and the beginning of her sixth, Washington’s Sue Ellen Katz resolved to create a polymer head each day for a year. She’s completed 197 and ends her year in October.

Explaining the exercise she says that, “Each new head will help my own to sit more squarely on top of my shoulders.”

On her 365TalkingHeads blog Sue Ellen adds pensive quotes and captions to each head and she gangs them for a “say cheese” group photo at the end of each month. Repeating an exercise 365 times is bound to bring changes. Don’t you wonder what she’s learned? (Thanks to Ronna Sarvas Weltman for the link.)

Second Haab book giveaway

You readers are anxious to help me lighten the load on my bookshelves. Our randomly picked winner is Connie Nall from Omaha, Nebraska. Congratulations!

Incidentally, I have a second copy of the same book with DVD. I was going to hang onto that one but decided you’d enjoy it more. Take the PCDaily reader survey and enter your email at the end. You’ll automatically be entered in next Friday’s giveaway!

de la Torre’s shifting polymer gestalt

Madrid’s Silvia Ortiz de la Torre is fascinated with shifting colors and patterns, from soap film to fractals. A look at her Flickr page shows you how she translates this fascination into polymer patterns. Polymer was made for artists like Silvia.

I’m mesmerized by these recent pieces. I can’t tell if they’re made from extruded blends or hand-built canes. The colors pop and the patterns play nicely with each other.

Friday Giveaway

My daughter’s visiting and she’s making me tidy my library. The brand new Art of Metal Clay, a beautiful revised and expanded book from Sherri Haab comes complete with a project DVD.

While there are several polymer and mixed media artists in it, this book deserves a good home with a metal clay artist. If metal clay rings your chimes, leave a comment and my daughter will draw a name on Monday. Have a lucky weekend.

Ancient peoples polymer

Christine Damm's Ancient Peoples polymer cuff

Christine Damm’s article on wire and polymer in the summer issue of Belle Armoire Jewelry tempts me to try her loose, eclectic style. I’m on a tribal, primitive jag this week that you can see in her copper and faux jade cuff. The polymer pieces on her Stories They Tell site and Flickr page hint at tales from other times.

Her husband formed the cuff from repurposed copper flashing. The texture is from a Cool Tools plate. (Cool Tools carries mostly metal clay tools and many of them can be used on polymer as well.)

Psaltis’ cool black and white

Psaltis' polymer persian rug canes
Psaltis' polymer bangle
Psaltis' Ancient Modern rings

Perhaps a little black and white polymer from Maria Psaltis will cool off our hot summer. Maria is from Australia where it’s winter.

She does a cool rendition of Ronna Sarvas Weltman’s Ancient Modern rings and then pairs them with her more complex Persian Rug canes for building bangles. See more of her ethnic influences on her Flickr pages. (Ronna has two new DVDs just out.)

Shopping update

Thanks to Kim Korringa, Brenda Urquhart and Jeanette Walters for reporting back about their shopping at the Grove and Grove sidewalk sale. Enjoy shopping vicariously by reading their stories here.

Realtime polymer sculpture from Camille Young

Camille Young's polymer SkyMaid fan pin

Camille Young made this fan art pin out of polymer so enthusiastically that I had to figure out just what a Flapjack SkyMaid was.

SkyMaid is pretty sweet, a super heroine who travels from under the sea to up in the sky with a bit of an edge and an attitude. Go take a look!

Camille offers a straightforward step-by-step of another of her polymer video game-inspired creatures on her Flickr page. Follow along here.

She creates characters in real time in response to viewers suggestions on Fangamers Camilleart Fridays. (You have to skip ahead about 45 minutes in the video to watch Camille sculpt on demand.) Here’s the result.

A blast of bangles

Sylvie Peraud’s prickly polymer bangle was one of the top vote getters in the Crazy Bracelets challenge sponored by France’s LezArtGil group. Scroll down the LezArtGil page to reveal all the wild entries. The theme was inspired by Donna Kato’s signature fluid bangle shapes and her recent workshops.

The second bumpy bangle is from Connecticut’s Helen Wyland-Malchow. She’s a winner in the Progress and Possibilities competition. Click through her noisy Web site to see the full range of her work.