Clay combinations

Cindy Silas entered this intricate metal clay/polymer necklace in the 2013 Saul Bell Design Awards and she’s a finalist!

This mosaic inlaid piece also serves as the glamor shot (original photo by Robert Diamante) for Lark Jewelry & Beading’s call for entry for a new book, Clay Combinations, which Cindy is busy writing.

If your art combines polymer with metal clay, you have until April 1 to photograph your best work and submit it for publication in the book. Here’s the information and the form. What are you waiting for?

Liz Hall is also a Saul Bell finalist and here’s Liz’ entry on Facebook along with in-progress shots. The awards will be presented in June.

Giveaway announced

The winner of yesterday’s quick giveaway is (drum roll) Karen Keech. Since I have to go to the post office anyway, I added two runners-up. They’re Karina at Kabidesigns and Rose of Witch Rose Am I. That was fun.

Fractured polymer geometry

Missouri’s Dawn Stubitsch has started mixing her media in a new jewelry series that combines polymer with metal clay.

Dawn has been known for her super realistic polymer cake toppers and her tame and tidy graphic pendants. These recent energetic combinations of patterns, layers and materials represent a new direction.

Look more closely at Dawn’s work on her Facebook page, her website, and her Etsy shop. Libby Mills, who just finished a metal clay workshop with Celie Fago, brought the Dawn’s new geometry to our attention.

Mixing clays

If you like your clays in both polymer and metal, take a look at the work of Ohio artist Pat Bolgar. Her complex combinations mix materials, colors and shapes in rich and appealing ways. Her mixes engage the eye as she brings color to metallics and, at the same time, adds metallics to polymer.

Pat is featured in the new Metal Clay and Color book and she’s added updated photos on her Facebook page. You can also tour her cabin-in-the-woods studio on Facebook.

Micromosaics and metal clay

Just in time for Easter, Cindy Silas finished her micromosaic from our recent class with Cynthia Toops. Cindy’s leaping bunny is set in a metal clay bezel that she textured with photopolymer plates.

Here’s the in-progress shot in case you missed it. Baked, splinter-sized pieces of rolled polymer are set into unbaked clay, a tedious but meditative process.

I’m leaping to the west coast today for a vacation. If you see beach pebbles and sea glass creeping into PCDaily posts, you’ll know why.

Edgier romance, easier extrusion

This Lovely Bones pendant from Georgia jeweler Jenny Baughman reminds us that not everything romantic has to be hearts and flowers.

Jenny often uses polymer to fill her deep bezels and add color to her modern primitive metal shapes.

See more of her work on her Etsy site and on FaceBook. The new link comes from another polymer artist with a primitive bent, Ronna Weltman.

Extraordinary Extrusions

I’m gathering my tricks to teach an online class on Alison Lee’s Craftcast next Wednesday called Extraordinary Extrusions. I find polymer extrusions fascinating and have made it my mission to assemble the most easy-to-use and easy-on-the-joints equipment.

I’ll even share my bulging file of design ideas from sites around the world. Alison’s a terrific hostess and you’ll leave with secrets, links and videos. Join us. Sign up here.

Upcycled polymer

In the hands of Barbara Briggs discarded guitar strings, a bit of textured polymer, some wire and a few trinkets are upcycled into a chic bangle.

Barbara talks about her first-of-the-year penchant for order in recent blog posts. She’s been beautifying her tools and straightening her mixed media studio which is home to some cool new tools. Her progress makes me believe it’s possible to get organized.

Electroforming and polymer

Have you gotten wind of the electroforming on polymer craze? A glance at the kit available from Sherri Haab and a look at the recent experiments of these artists may start your wheels spinning:

That led me to some of the glass folks like Kate Fowle Meleney who’ve become expert at electroforming.

If you know of others who are experimenting, send me links to their work. For those of you who prefer more low tech polymer, check out this easy and fun free bead shaping tutorial.

Malinow’s skull and bones

It’s October and you can predict a month of polymer skulls, candy corn and pumpkin art. We’ll start with this new skull and bones necklace by Wendy Malinow. She’s loaded up her Etsy site with dark and quirky works that are on the cutting edge (including this poison cameo bracelet).

Wendy’s ability to stay edgy netted her first place in the 2010 Saul Bell Award competition in the metal clay category competition. It was her fourth year as a winner! The competition challenges jewelry designers to push the boundaries of creativity to come up with innovative pieces. Here’s her winning Song and Eggs necklace that includes metal clay, gemstones and polymer.

Fideka partners metal clay and polymer

Fideka's metal clay and polymer necklace

Anna Fideka of Warsaw, Poland turned up as I was rooting around in the metal clay artists’ sites (check out metalclaymagic and this Flickr pool).

Fideka's metal clay and polymer pendant

She studied Polish literature and journalism. For many years she worked as a journalist and released two books of poetry. In 2004 she discovered polymer clay and began her adventure in jewelry.

Seeing how our medium is mixing with our metal clay partners is exciting. Her Polish gallery sales site was impressive. Here are her Fickr pix.

This Just In

Libby Mills posted the Bead Dreams 2010 winners on her site. First Place Lynne Schwarzenberg; Second Place Lludmya Heggland; Third Place Janice Abarbanel. Check ’em out here.

Easy spring polymer

Thanks for making my job easy. I just scroll down the link list and see what’s arrived. Easy-peezy.

UK’s Pippa Chandler made the articulated polymer leaf necklace at the left after studying her daughter’s cloisonne fish pendant.

Rebecca Geoffrey's metal clay and polymer fern

The Netherland’s Els van Haasen (beadelz) created this retro volcano pendant and given the volcano in the news, it seemed only right to show it off.

A silver and polymer fern necklace from Rebecca Geoffrey is part of her newest line and a perfect look for spring. I’m off to pull weeds!

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