Enhancements for silkscreen on polymer

Breil on PCDaily

If you’re a silkscreen novice like me you’ll find the tips that Helen Breil offers in her new free tutorial particularly helpful.

Use pastels? Mix colors in one quick pass? Who knew? She demos the basics in a quick video and then moves to some clever enhancements.

Helen only started experimenting with these processes on polymer rather recently. Following her lead can save you lots of time and frustration.

What better way to start the week than with timesaving tips? There’s more on her site, Pinterest, Flickr and Instagram.

Tidying for the summer weekend


If you breathe deeply you may catch a whiff of fresh, line-dried laundry as you study these silk-screened pendants from Spain’s Noelia Contreras Martin. Or at least that’s how they impress me – clean and crisp and summery.

Enjoy the rest of Noelia’s bounty on Instagram, Facebook and Flickr.

As we head into a sunny weekend, let me tidy my desk and share a couple of late-breaking news items with you.

Clearing my desk

Christi Friesen is test-driving the concept of using her Pinterest board to promote and sell (it’s all the rage). Take a look at her Sakura Pinterest page, a one-week art event that includes projects and tips and giveaways as well as art for sale. The online pop-up party continues into next week.

Speaking of parties, there’s one in the mountains of central Spain (Sierra de Gredos) this August 5-8 with teachers Robert Dancik, Natalia Garcia de Leaniz, and Olga Castuera. Sign up and get ready to add these new skills to your toolbox.


Folded, silkscreened, crackled polymer


Since you’re revved up for tool shopping, here are a couple more juicy tidbits.

Helen Breil and Tonja Lenderman teamed up to create a new line of retro-looking silkscreens. (They go nicely with my retro extruder disks that are now available online!)

If you’ve never silkscreened on polymer, you’ll want to watch Helen’s free video tutorial that quickly shows you how. She’s been experimenting with using Tim Holtz crackle medium along with silkscreens to produce aged and crackled patterns as on this black folded bead (with red feathers)! Click on the image for a better look.

Helen used Picket Fence crackle paint over black clay using her Cosmic Spider Webs design. See more of her silkscreened samples on Pinterest. Helen’s books and stamps are available from KazuriWest.com. Catch up with Tonja on her blog and Facebook.

Low profile polymer

Florida’s Karen Woods doesn’t hang out in the usual online haunts like Flickr and Etsy.

It was delightful to spot her on the list of teachers at Creative Journey Studios (formerly Women Creative) in Georgia where she’ll be teaching silk screening on polymer in February. Her graphic shapes fit next to each other like old friends with colorful stories to share.

Karen also teaches her own approach to weaving polymer into baskets and I bumped into one student’s class pix here. You have to work a bit and follow a few links to keep up with Karen but it’s worth the effort.

The lure of silkscreened polymer

Arlene Groch's silkscreened polymer

This silkscreened polymer necklace by Arlene Groch and the pendant and earrings that Susan Gross was wearing (pictured below) nearly convinced me to try silkscreening.

Flat or pillowed, densely layered or lightly applied, silkscreened polymer has an elegance that’s hard to match with other techniques.

Susan Gross' silkscreened set

Though the screens can be a commitment of time and money, it was reassuring to learn that good pre-made screens are becoming more readily available through a number of suppliers.

I retreated to rock making when I felt overloaded with new ideas. I’ll head home this weekend and share more pictures with you next week. Have a great one.

Carren’s new site

Art historian Rachel Carren is most comfortable as an art writer and contributor of critical commentary. She’s also been quietly working in her polymer studio since 1999. Rachel spent several years refining the air-filled polymer pillow construction she used on these segmented brooches. The surfaces are elegantly screened and the segments are fitted together on a clay base.

Artists friends have nudged and nagged Rachel to promote her own work and her lovely new site is worth the wait.

Carren's Sebo brooches

She’s still writing about polymer on the PolymerArtArchive, promoting polymer art to museum curators, helping out with the RAM project, and curating a Lark book on Polymer Masters that’s due out next spring. Elise Winters tipped us off to Rachel’s new site.

Cozzi’s polymer hearts

I hadn’t caught up with Louise Fischer Cozzi for a while and somehow I missed her Etsy store where she sells her latest polymer clay creations and a line of heart pendants for charity. The story behind the hearts is a touching and uplifting one.

Her website had some new additions that I hadn’t seen and a very nifty catalog.

Louise shuttles between Stresa, Italy and Brooklyn, NY and has pioneered a number of polymer clay metallic, silk screen, and image transfer techniques.