Forced blooms

Nancy Nearing forces spring blooms on PolymerClayDaily.com

Rather than wait for real blooms in her Connecticut yard, Nancy Nearing grabbed a 36″ branch lying in the melting snow and created some polymer blooms.

She reinforced the stick with Apoxie sculpt and wired on caned leaves and delicate translucent blue blooms. Lights may be next. She has just the spot above a corner window in her studio for her touch of spring.


PCD is getting ready for spring too and will post only two or three times each week. I’m cutting back and clearing my schedule to make time for more art and adventure. If you need additional inspiration, please sign up for the weekly StudioMojo newsletter that arrives every Saturday full of tips, talks, tools, and other juicy bits.

Embracing imperfection

Rozz Hopkins limited her tools and let herself play as a personal challenge on PolymerClayDaily.com

For these organic canes, New Jersey’s Rosalyn Hopkins (RozzHopp) set aside her pasta machine, rollers, and tools. She used only a Bic pen to make indentations. It was a personal challenge.

“I struggled for so many years to show my work in public. I’ve come to understand it doesn’t have to be perfection. It needs to be freeing. Something that pushes me,” said Rozz in a recent post.

Imperfection used to send Rozz off twitching in discomfort. Lately, she’s taught herself to accept flaws and even make them on purpose. “It makes life so much more interesting,” she says.  Freedom and playfulness come through loud and clear in these canes. Agree?

Coming up roses

Ann Havlach-Duncan's patriotic garden grows as you vote on PolymerClayDaily.com

Illinois’ Ann Duncan-Hlavach brings red, white, and blue to her polymer roses. She swirls thin cane slices around each other and hides a pearl in their centers.

So here’s hoping that we swirl around each other and find the pearl we want in the middle.

You’ve voted already, right? That’s the best way to keep your garden growing!

A nip in the woods

Chris Owens creates a flask for the woods on PolymerClayDaily.com

Kentucky’s Chris Owens (chris325o) uses layers of Cernit metallic clays with a touch of Sculpey Souffle white to achieve this tree bark look. She’s made a big mokume gane veneer that wraps all around the Blue Bark Flask.

Chris makes luscious mid-century modern patterns collide with woodsy colors. Usually, you hide a flask but I’d want to set this right on the table for all to admire.

Aren’t you curious to know what she used for those patterns? She’s Retrovenue on Facebook.

Polymer pile up

Fabi Perez Ajates piles up her jewelry on PolymerClayDaily.com

Spain’s Fabi Perez Ajates (Con Tus Manos) makes stacks of beads and bangles and brooches look like fascinating ceramic sculptures.

The holes and ridges and shapes in her imitative ceramic pieces all have dual purposes.

They can be worn or piled up in endlessly entertaining ways that form totems.

Fabi Perez Ajates piles up her jewelry on PolymerClayDaily.com

Fabi calls this her Coraline Jewelry since the pieces were inspired by oceanic reefs. 

Scroll down Fabi’s blog to see how she plays with her jewelry. (via Sue Ossenberg)

Challenge with a twist

Janet Bouey gives her challenge a twist on PolymerClayDaily.com

Vancouver Island’s Janet Bouey finishes her 100-day challenge with this hollow twisted tube.

Looking at her recap on Instagram you get a sense of how muscles loosen and fear is diminished by the commitment to a daily studio exercise.

There’s no wrong or right, there’s just moving forward. I’m guessing that Janet will want to explore this new tangent from Day 95.

We’ll look at the challenges (polymer and otherwise) of the last 100 days on StudioMojo this Saturday. What have we learned? What’s next? Join us for an inside look. 

Garden inspirations

Pavla Cepelikova creates Columbines on PolymerClayDaily.com

Czech Republic’s Pavla Cepelikova (SaffronAddict) has taken liberties with her version of the Columbine flowers (at the top right of the photo).

The long tubes drape down and flare to reveal secret colors as they open at the bottom. Pavla likes these bell shapes in her garden and polymer will allow her to wear them on her ears.

What inspiration is blooming in your garden?

Monday head scratcher

Melanie West joins fabric and polymer in new ways on PolymerClayDaily.com

Maine’s Melanie West posts daily on Facebook about an astonishing array of artists that she’s discovered.

She rarely reveals what she’s working on.  But in a July feature, she shows a new series brooches that she calls Fabric Rocks. Polymer is involved but she’s done a sleight of hand so that it’s difficult to tell what’s fabric, what’s textured polymer, and how the pattern is created.

She’s probably proudly smirking at having stumped us with her new tricks on a Monday. What’s your guess?

Succulent Skinners

Anna Nell makes blends for her new succulents on PolymerClayDaily.com

What would Poland’s Anna Nell make with the Skinner blends she showed on Instagram? A few days later she gives us the answer.

Anna Nell makes blends for her new succulents on PolymerClayDaily.com

She says she uses translucent clay, porcelain (I’m guessing she means pearl), and glow in the dark (she calls it “night effect”). She added pastels as well and some gold leaf for bling

Anna surrounds herself with a large collection of succulent inspirations so it’s difficult to distinguish real from polymer.

Pansies on the wire

Iryna Chajka drapes spectacular pansies from a hoop on PolymerClayDaily.com

At this time of year, I very much admire gardeners who can weed and prune their gardens to highlight spectacular specimens. They run to their studios to replicate them in polymer.

See how Ukraine’s Iryna Chajka suspends pansies from metal hoops.

She specializes in succulents but her pansies are outstanding.