You’re getting warmer…

Enkhe Tserenbadam drills each of these holes in a hollow bead on

This piece from Switzerland’s Enkhe Tserenbadam (@enkhethemaker) made me gasp. I try to keep track of my body when I’m looking at art. A gasp tells me that I’m close to paydirt. It’s like that “hot and cold” game we played as kids. This was warmer, warmer, HOT.

Enkhe drills each of the holes in her hollow pieces. It’s luscious to browse her site and consider how she works.

Speaking of warmer, warmer, I spent the week in an online gathering where gasps and astonishment surprised us again and again. Somehow our troubling times have moved some of us to “hot, hot, hot.” Come on over to StudioMojo to see some of the cool tools and sizzling art that we shared. Who knew a Zoom conference could be this much fun?

Flower diversion

Chicago’s Ann Duncan Hlavach brings us an end-of-the-summer flower. She tucks them in her outrageous garden among their more perishable, less flamboyant cousins.

If you need a pleasant diversion (and who doesn’t), take a stroll along Ann’s garden path.

Putting it all together

Assembling a global view on

Puzzle night has always been a hit at an annual gathering in the mountains that’s been going on for 20+ years. Though we’re online this year, the puzzle was still a huge hit orchestrated by North Carolina’s Julie Eakes.

Each player created a 3″x3″ polymer tile based on the line drawing that Julie sent via e-mail. Anything light on her black and white clue drawing must be a light value, darks must be dark. We had no clue about the theme or the color scheme.

Julie secured permission to use Thomas Wimberly’s poignant and powerful Global Forefront sketch. We submitted jpeg photos of our square tiles to Julie via email.

She based this ingenious group project on the site which meant that Julie had to upload our 30 files to them. Today we each tried to solve and assemble the puzzle virtually on our computer screens. Usually, we elbow and jostle as we crowd around a table to figure what goes where. We missed the cheek-to-cheek jostling but the laughter and competition were undiminished.

Now, each of us must mail our actual tile to the puzzle winner. It felt liberating to have creative good times. Click on the photo to see if you can pick out any artist just by her style.

Distressed stories

Christine Damm finished this story brooch with distress oxides and metallics on

Vermont’s Christine Damm (StoriesTheyTell) makes earthy, rough-hewn pieces with surfaces that look weathered and worn.

Here she played with distress oxides that make the polymer brooch look like it was unearthed and brushed off to reveal a story from another time. Christine builds layers of color, of texture, of materials, of design, of meaning that require a curious and daring wearer.

This piece lingered in her studio until she ringed it with polymer snakes that she accented with metallics and proclaimed its story sufficiently told.

Taming pandemic hair

Del Roussel tames hair with crisp patterns on

Do you have pandemic hair? My longer hair keeps flying into my mouth and fighting with my mask and glasses. So I keep looking for barrettes and clips to keep my mane under control. Of course, I want them embellished fashionably with polymer.

Del Roussel tames hair with crisp patterns on

These barrettes and clips from France’s Del Roussel show us how to tame stray strands with style.

Del’s patterns are crisp and summery. And these findings are perfect for using up scraps. A small project idea to start your week.

Sometimes it is painted!

Geninne Zlatkis paints her polymer mobile on Polymer Clay

New Mexico’s Geninne Zlatkis paints and decorates, illustrates, and photographs. Every once in a rare while, she works with polymer as in this bird mobile. Yes, they’re painted.

No complex techniques, just a love of birds, and an understanding of their shapes topped with an illustrator’s ability to translate feathers into lines and dots.

It’s a pleasure to see landscapes and architecture through her eyes.

Over at StudioMojo, this is what I look for. We cast a wider net to spotlight outlier artists who understand the importance of polymer as one of many tools in their toolbox. Come on down and see what surprises we’ve dug up for your weekend entertainment.


The rhythm of polymer

Chris Baird makes polymer bits reverberate on

Zero in on Chris Baird’s brooches featuring shapes, flowers, birds, and fish that are different from the usual. This Minneapolis artist works small and relies on gradations of dots and stripes.

Chris Baird makes polymer bits reverberate on

Chris slices narrow bits of graduated or striped canes and places them next to each other on shaped bases. The light and dark bits reverberate against each other.

She keeps the tap-tap-tap going with indentations and repeated textures. The beat goes on. Here’s Chris on Etsy.

Canes from the garden

Helena Viberg makes amazing 12:1 miniature fruits and veggies on

Sweden’s Helena Viberg (enmojtmojta) sucked me right down a nostalgic rabbit hole with her 1:12 scale miniatures.

I started in polymer making imitative food with my daughter for her dollhouse. It was nothing like Helena Viberg’s home renovations but Hillary and I spent many happy hours making pizzas from polymer and furniture from matchboxes.

Helena Viberg makes amazing 12:1 miniature fruits and veggies on

How far that art form has come! It’s hard to believe that you’re not in a chic country chateau when you look at Helena’s creations. And stumbling onto miniaturists’ Home Depot (Mini Materials) was astonishing.

Helena says that recently when she tired of mini-home renovations she returned to her garden to make these fruit and veggie canes. Careful, you could lose a large chunk of time looking at her tiny wonders. The most efficient way to see them is on Instagram.

Warrior women

Maryanne Loveless makes warrior women on

Utah’s Maryanne Loveless suits up her polymer power women in armor and gives them superpowers (magnets).

She calls them the Hang On girls with their articulated arms and legs. 

Maryanne Loveless makes warrior women on

“Sometimes the best we can do is armor up and hang on,” says Maryanne. These make great reminders to stick on your fridge. They shout, “You can do it!”

Here she is on Etsy.