Bright colors reflect a bright spirit

Polymer and a bright spirit helped Rachel face challenges and look forward to a bright spring on PolymerClayDaily.com

If the holidays are truly over, spring can’t be far behind, right?

Need a shot of springy colors? Here’s a super one from the UK’s Rachel (madebyracheluk)

Her colors remind you that brighter days are coming and her story will certainly lift your spirits. Rachel had her heart set on a career in medical science but health challenges made her change directions.

The bright colors reflect the bright and determined spirit of the artist. Here’s Rachel’s story on Facebook. Her can-do spirit shines through in these delightfully colored flower cane beads gathered into bouquets on a string.

Polymer petroglyphs

Deb Harts debuts new Southwest inspired imitative inlays on PolymerClayDaily

Texas’ Deb Hart shows the start of these petroglyphs on Instagram but how she arrives at the small squares with caned petroglyph images in the middle is still baffling.

They are built into an extruded string outline. Wow, that looks labor-intensive. She’s releasing more photos of her progress on the new inlays as she goes.

Here, she shows a Zuni Bear petroglyph and a coiled snake. Maybe she’s gearing up for a tutorial about her newly developed methods.

See an overview of Deb’s Southwest and Native American-inspired sculptures and jewelry on Flickr.

Planting bits of clay

Eva Thissen captures Saturday on a bead on PolymerClayDaily.com

Germany’s Eva Thissen says that she doesn’t work as intensively with polymer these days but she still enjoys it immensely. Her current crop of minutely appliqued beads has already sold on Etsy after only days. 

Eva used to create narratives around a single character. Now her stories are bigger and focused on groups as in this community garden, part of her Saturday series.

Eva Thissen captures Saturday on a bead on PolymerClayDaily.com

It’s hard to imagine working this small. A needle, good eyes, and steady hands are the only tools required.

Faceted and striped

Alessia Bodini treats us to both facets and strips on her beads on PolymerClayDaily.com

Italy’s Allesia Bodini keeps her options open. When confronting the decision of whether her beads should be faceted or striped, she merely says “Yes.”

Are they cut from solid blocks of stripes? Or created as faceted beads and covered with slices of stripes? Is it too early in the week for this brain teaser?

Inquiring minds want to know. Take another look on Facebook.

 

 

From veneer to bead

Dan Cormier shows how to turn veneers into finely finished pieces in his June-July online class

Here’s a first look at one of Dan Cormier’s newest beads from his initial Matrix Canes online canework master class. But what does one do with beautiful veneers?

The sequel to the story is lodged in his second online adventure, Building Better Beads which runs from June 14 to July 14.

In this next step, Dan shows you how to turn a flat veneer into a finely finished piece. Registration closes Wednesday, June 5. Hop on over to the class site to read up on the details and register.

Long-running projects

Watch Cristina Garcia Alvarez challenge herself for 100 days on PolymerClayDaily.com

Spain’s Cristina García Alvarez (espiralarte) gives us a window into her journey through a 100-day project on Instagram.

On day 20 she took a turn that you may like when she paired Skinner blends with Bettina Welker-like retro canes. She added quirky textures and sped along with variations on the days that followed. Cristina gives us a window into her world as she continues to explore these designs. Click through her days and watch her progress.

We’ll be looking at how artists grow and change in the StudioMojo weekend newsletter this Saturday. Instead of sulking about how I haven’t participated in 100-day efforts like Cristina’s, I’ve decided to celebrate that StudioMojo has been perking along for 408 weeks. Yikes! It’s my own kind of long-running project that you can join at any time!

The attraction of ease

Barbara Baatz brings spontaneity to her beads on PolymerClayDaily.com

These beads from New Jersey’s Barbara Baatz (baatzbeads) are unpretentious and relaxed. They’re full of heart and devil-may-care attitude. They match but they’re not matchy-matchy.

It’s sometimes wise to step back, ease up and let that inner wild thing have some fun. Maybe it was taking yesterday off that has me appreciating simplicity.

Perfection is overrated and aiming for it sometimes sucks the energy out of our work. Do you need more spontaneity? See more on Instagram.

Blossoming beads

Juliya Laukhina's beads blossom with color on PolymerClayDaily

Moscow’s Juliya Laukhina covers her dark round beads with dense delicate dots of pastel colors. Is she using mokume gane off-cuts? Or has she taken another path?

It doesn’t matter, of course. She mostly uses round beads of this size as her canvas and every time I check, she’s trying another method to decorate them.

Juliya must have a science background since she’s methodical in her experimenting, only changing one variable at a time. These tight dots look like spring blossoms. She’s on Instagram and Etsy.

Playing during a party

Loretta Lam test drives a new idea at Clayathon on PolymerClayDaily

It’s not easy to be productive at a busy event like Clayathon where you are bombarded with ideas and opportunities to socialize.

Loretta Lam bravely used her time to play, trying out an idea that had been rattling around in her brain. She envisions a long chain of these 3″ tubes covered with mix and match patterns. The neutral palette keeps her focus on shape and design.

Passersby help her with a thumbs up or down. The patterns are all Loretta and the shapes allow us to see them in a new way.

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