Penciled clay

Annie Pennington uses colored pencil on polymer on her mixed media Diatom Series commissioned brooch (left) which is set in copper and filled with felted wool. Annie is associate editor for ArtJewelry Magazine and was trained as a metalsmith.

When Janice Abarbanel featured Annie’s work on her blog, I noted that all the captions listed “clay” as one of the materials. A quick email clarified that the material was polymer and Annie happily amended the descriptions in her captions.

“I have just recently begun working with polymer clay again after close to 20 years (and I’m still using the same old clay!). I think it may be time to get some new clay,” she admitted. “I recently stopped by the Racine Art Museum to see Terra Nova before it closed. I’ve been to countless exhibitons and art shows, but that was definitely one of the best exhibits I’ve ever seen,” she added.

Houndstooth hearts

Louisville pediatrician Ron Lehocky has made 18,200 polymer hearts which makes him the valentine king. Today is his day. Blow a kiss toward Kentucky.

Not only has Ron raised $10 for each of those hearts which goes to the KIDS Center, he’s also raised the bar on what one person can accomplish. Other polymer artists have helped by sending Ron their scrap clay and old canes (he has enough to carry him through 2020).

Ron started his project as a small fundraising effort in 2005. It’s fun to look back at the PCDaily posts that have charted his climbing numbers.

This year Alabama fans asked Ron to take up the houndstooth challenge, a tribute to coach Bear Bryant who wore a houndstooth hat. After a few trial and error canes, Ron created these as his entry. Here’s another recent photo of his 2012 designs.

Email Ron if you’d like to purchase a heart and spread a little love. Happy V Day.

Love Notes

Just one more! Check out Tejae Floyde’s love note hearts for a Valentine’s Day love story.

Time for polymer hearts

Time flies and it’s nearly time to gather up all the hearts in your studio and deliver them.

These lovelies from Israel’s Eti Raz and Massachusetts’ Amy Crawley may inspire you to make a few last-minute valentines.

Eti’s heart is covered with cane slices, layered with a clock face and given patterned wings. Amy’s is inked, textured and stamped. Both of their sites are full of more examples.┬áLove, any way you want to say it.

Mosaic pebble

This Pebble brooch marks the latest collaboration between polymer artist Cynthia Toops and metalsmith Chuck Domitrovich.

Cynthia mixes vertical and horizontal polymer micro mosaics in a beautifully constructed 2.5″ x 2″ x 1/4″ frame that Chuck constructed from sterling silver and brass with a stainless steel pin. Vertical threads of white polymer create the lines on the horizontal mosaic of a pebble.

Keep the size in mind as you zoom in to marvel at the detail. Then turn it over to examine the back with its brass posts that balance the piece, an option for a bail, and spaces for both artists’ signatures. We end the week with an example of remarkable attention to detail and fine collaboration. Have a remarkable weekend.

Wisdom of the heart

Estera from Croatia speaks the international language of love…in polymer.

In fact you’ll find her two Etsy sites here and here filled with paint-spattered, mosaic and textured hearts in fresh, inviting colors.

There’s no imitation or struggle to prove herself here, just an exhuberance and innovation that’s pleasant for a Thursday browse.

Polymer with an African aesthetic

See new work from Ohio’s Debbie Jackson on Facebook and on her Black Art in America page. She’s off to LA to sell these new works at the Pan African Film Festival.

A trip to Ghana injected Debbie’s work with renewed ethnic vibrancy and she mixes polymer with treasures she brought back with her.┬áHer artistic aesthetic is rooted in Africa.

This new necklace includes polymer focal bead with eggshell mosaic, stick coral and African brass beads.

Debbie’s a vital part of our local Creative Women of Color collective that provides a creative connection with the community. Thanks to Jeanne Dumond for the link!

Party Time

Tonight at 8:30 ET at Craftcast. Join us for a free event all about tools.

Polymer love birds

When you don’t quite know what to say, Amy Giocomelli’s small polymer shapes say it for you.

This Colorado Etsy artist stamps short messages on hand formed love birds, hearts, pears, and stones that can be lined up as pleasant reminders. Simple and sweet.

I’m resting up for Craftcast’s free online party for those who love tools on Wednesday. It’ll be big. Come as you are. You can sign up directly here.

Tribal mosaics

Liz Hall keeps refining her polymer mosaics and I can’t stop watching her progress. This brass cuff is part of her new tribal series.

Chips of iridescent polymer opal and faux wood pair up with black and white cane slices. Silver beads embedded in the black polymer grout add a dimensional touch.

Liz is teaching some of her tricks in a “Fillable Forms” class at the Cabin Fever Clay Festival next weekend (February 18) in Maryland. Registration’s still open.

Rifle through the sold items on her Etsy site to see what she’s been up to. These beautiful graduated polymer and pearl earrings slipped into the sold category before I could show them to you. Find more on Facebook too.

Tea and polymer

Wanda Shum has based the design of her newest polymer tea set on The Night Circus, a popular novel by Erin Morgenstern that presents a sprightly version of 19th-century English magic.

Wanda uses ceramic teapots as the canvas for her polymer canes.

You can follow the evolution of her face cane here snd see the damask cane portion of the teapot emerge here. Zoom in close to examine the carved and drawn areas as well. What a treat!

Party on Wednesday

PCDaily doesn’t usually cover tools but that’s not because I don’t love them. Wednesday night, party girl and Craftcast publisher Alison Lee is hosting a free webinar during which five tool fans will bring out their favorite polymer and metal clay tools.

Celie Fago, Jill Erickson, Wanaree Tanner, Patrik Kusek and I will demo our secret weapons. It’ll be a fast-paced, fun filled hour with lots of surprises and giveaways. RSVP here.

Northern lights polymer

Florida’s Barbara Bechtel uses her “Northern Lights” color way to wash these stamped and distressed polymer squares. These heart charms are only 1/2″ square but they’re layered with color, texture and personality.

Look through all the items she’s sold on her Floridity Etsy site to see the selection of wearable, desirable small beads she has created, lavishing them with colors and then judiciously sanding and removing details to give them an aged, mysterious appeal.

There’s much more to study on Facebook and on her SecondSurf blog. It’ll keep you busy.