Hollow echoes

Krichevskaya on PCDaily

This week big, rough, natural-looking beads kept popping up all over the world. We’ve got Anna Krichevskaya (left) from Russia, Kseniya Iokhna from Belarus, and Danièle Moucadel in Italy all catching the same vibe. All different, of course, but with an emphasis on light and hollow (or with big holes which is similar).

Anna calls her necklace Jeans Forever and she sells her big, earthy, informal jewelry here.

Danièle (right) refers to her heavy cord as jump rope (or that’s how it translated). The heavy cord works well with this jumble of big rings. If you can get to her Facebook page you’ll see even more in this vein.

Kseniya (Xenia) Iokhna goes under the name of SolarBird and she lives in Minsk. She calls these hollowed out round beads Druid Stones.

 Iokhna on PCDaily

Xenia pinpoints her influences – the architect Zaha Hadid and paper artist Jeremy May. It’s easy to see the echoes in her work. Whew, there’s so much to look at these days. Have an inspired weekend.

Egg hunt

Friesleben on PCDaily
Hickey on PCDaily
Ariane Friesleben Angela Hickey Jan Montarsi

Go on a little egg hunt with me today. First I bumped into Angela Hickey’s flower-covered eggs (one chicken, one quail). Hers is a traditional approach straight from her garden of flower canes.

Ariane Friesleben camoflaged her eggs with Swelligant patinas to make them look like precious metallic treasures. She offers a carved faux ivory version as well.

This Jan Montarsi egg was hiding in his Flickr gallery. His palette includes pearl clays and pinata inks (here’s the tutorial) in the mix which makes the extruded strings glow.

All of this led me back to the PolymerArtArchives and one of my all-time favorite eggs from a 1991 series by Ford and Forlano (then City Zen Cane). You can still find echoes of David and Steven’s bright graphic roots in their current work.

Even Martha Stewart was in on the hunt this year. Yep, here’s the video that shows Martha trying her hand at polymer.

April in Polymer

If you’re dreaming about April in Paris, you’ll love Laure Bonnet in Rennes. Her playful polymer bouquets are sold in trendy galleries all over France like this one (Dumauvobleu, Mathilde Colas and others sell there).

Laure’s dark-edged disks and ruffled petals are wired together in a riot of colors and shapes to form bright baubles for fashion divas. There’s more at this site which represents several galleries and in her photo galleries.

Bonnet on PCDaily


The five winners from Monday’s From Polymer To Art magazine giveaway are: Lanette Holland, Leila Bidler, Bonnie Kreger, Valda Belyeu and Glo Weimern. Marjon and Saskia will be in touch with you. Congratulations!


Polymer miniatures are big

Kilgast on PCDaily

That’s what Stephanie Kilgast discovered. She was mobbed by miniaturists in Hong Kong at her press conference there a few months back. Her sushi platter brooches and earrings sell quickly. Catch the pictures and the news video.

Stephanie was born in Germany, lives in France and travels the globe showing her miniatures. She studied architecture but shortly before graduation she discovered polymer miniatures. After graduation she became a full-time miniaturist. That was in 2009.

Her mini-Easter eggs and chocolate bunny fit our week perfectly. You’ll find a bunch of Stephanie’s free tutorials on her site. She’s also on CraftArtEdu, CDHM.org, Flickr and in all the usual places. It’s best to look when you’re not hungry! Thanks to Donna Kato for the link.

Buying kisses, giving away magazines

Our surveys showed that only two percent of polymer artists are men. That statistic may have contributed to the popularity of Dan Cormier and Staedtler’s director of marketing Nils Henssen during the Synergy3 auction.

Saskia Veltenaar and Marjon Donker, publishers of the Polymer To Art Magazine started the silliness by requesting Dan’s kissable stubble as an auction item (a bold move considering that Tracy Holmes was the auctioneer). When Saskia and Marjon later proposed Nils as an item, Hollie Mion and I could not let the Europeans outbid us. Here’s Nan Roche dropping out.

Wind Issue

To raise the stakes, I offered a PCD post that would document the event. I’m paying up with this post. Here are the two kisses that raised hundreds of dollars for IPCA. It was hard to explain to my husband how I placed a winning auction bid and came home with nothing.

Giveaway 5 magazines

Silliness aside, the Netherland’s Saskia and Marjon are offering a copy of this month’s issue of their international magazine, the Wind issue, to FIVE lucky winners who leave a comment on this post. Sign up before Tuesday midnight to be entered to win. Winners will be announced Wednesday.

Wrapped up polymer

Garrod on PCDaily

My suitcase sits by the washer mounded with dirty laundry and my husband forlornly admits that he’s eaten all the pot pies in the freezer. I’ve been on the road too long and must attend to the homefront today so I’ll make the Synergy wrap-up brief.

The two presentations that Judy Belcher and I gave at the conference (How to How to and The View from Higher Ground) are available. Keynote speaker Harriete Estell Berman has posted the handout listing references from her speech, The Good, The Bad and the Ugly in the Age of the Internet. Her talk evaluates the good of the Internet, some bad trends, and a few ugly behaviors that threaten the healthy growth of crafts.You can follow Harriete’s entire slideshow here. Other presentations will soon be up on the IPCA site.

Cold drugs

I am most grateful that I did not catch the cold that ran rampant through the stressed and sleepless crowd. This snapshot shows the pile of therapies on my Georgia friends’ kitchen counter. Thanks to the IPCA committees that soldiered through sniffles and snafus to bring us Synergy3.

Heartfelt thanks to all of you who donated your money and good wishes to the Samunnat building project for the ladies in Nepal. By the end of Synergy you had exceeded the goal. We’ll follow along as Samunnat realizes the dream and I’ll share pictures right here as the building goes up. We are over the moon with gratitude and the ladies are astonished at the generosity of their friends a world away. Thank you, thank you.

This black and white necklace from the UK’s Angela Garrod was in the Synergy gallery and I couldn’t get the idea of its extrusion-wrapped cones out of my head so I’ll leave it with you this weekend.

Feathered polymer

Bonitz on PCDaily

At Creative Journeys Studios Kay Bonitz’ works jumped out at me. The pieces were stunning and the name was unfamiliar. Turns out that Kay is from Asheville, North Carolina and she’s known for her beading work. She hasn’t gotten around to adding her polymer pieces to her web site which is why we missed her.

Kay often adds beads and feathers to her polymer art. She haunts the outdoor stores and fishing supply places for embellishments like the fancy rooster feathers that bounce and wave when you move this textured brooch.

The back of each brooch is an unexpected treat and Kay often etches fortune cookie sayings and pithy remarks there. You can see some examples on the page I made of her polymer work.

Travelog polymer

Creative Journey Studios on PCDaily

Nowhere else can you immerse yourself in such a collection of polymer art as you will find at Creative Journey Studios in Buford, Georgia.You’d have to go to dozens of artfairs and shops to encounter the variety of polymer artists found here. They have glorious classroom space and the most esoteric tools and trinkets you could want.

Located a 45-minute drive outside of Atlanta, this 3,000 sq. ft. gallery shows a stunning array of historic works and a mouthwatering selection of contemporary work.

Owners Sue Sutherland and Ellen Prophater briefly opened the gallery for us on Sunday and I share our sneak peek here. Put Creative Journey Studios on your bucket list. Tomorrow I’ll show you a new artist who caught my eye there.

Bettina Welker has uploaded a great photo diary that you’ll want to visit if you’re in the mood for more Synergy3 travelogs.

Deviant demo

When Judy Belcher and I mentioned deviant art in our Synergy presentation, a surprising number of artists in the audience didn’t recognize the term. While Wendy Malinow’s work might fit in any number of categories, deviant is certainly one of them. Anyone who sets up her own bone-a-day challenge certainly qualifies as deviant.

Her latest polymer faux antler is inlaid with garnet, sunstone, raw sunstone, abalone, pua. Air plants sprout from its openings. She’s offering this piece as a free giveaway to people who follow her Tumblr Inkhead site. The drawing will be on April 1.

If you’re an antler fan, you’ll love her 32-inch long polymer antler lariats. Her Etsy shop shows a wider range of wonderfully strange and deviant art.

Treasure chests

These are the collars, chests and arms where your eyes might have roamed if you’d been at Atlanta’s Synergy3.

Today was a travel day and gave me an opportunity to begin to make sense of all the ideas, goodwill and plans that floated around. As I decompress, I’ll share what I saw with you. Consider this a first installment.

Photos here include: Pendant from Croatia’s Nikolina Otrzan, brooch from North Carolina’s Carol Parsons, Maryland’s Jeff Dever’s brooch was made with balloons. Second row: Germany’s Anke Humpert’s beads were much larger than I imagined, UK’s Carol Blackburn‘s striped bangle, hollow pendant from UK’s Cara Jane.