Flower cups

Nicole Bucher builds layers of petals on her flower cups on PolymerClayDaily.com

If you’re fed up with jewelry and tiny formats, take a tip from Australia’s Nicole Boucher (BlueMallee) and slap some layers of color on a straight-sided form to make flower cups!

Layers of bright sunflower petals stack up over a graduated background. She piles on leaves and flowers with delightful energy. Her sculptural composition is topped with a decorative edge and brushed with a wash of dark paint to enhance the details.

Who couldn’t use a creation like this to hold tools or utensils? Nicole will introduce her new series at her gallery.

Over at StudioMojo, we’ll be looking at how to keep moving when your heart doesn’t wanna. How do you loosen up and let the clay do the talking? Come on over and explore with us.

Curvy polymer

Julie Eakes keeps pantyhose and sand in her toolbox on PolymerClayDaily

North Carolina’s Julie Eakes brought sand and pantyhose to the Virginia retreat to experiment with rounded polymer forms like this one that has a 4″ diameter.

It’s all polymer and built on a shape filled with sand that is removed after curing.

Julie Eakes keeps pantyhose and sand in her toolbox on PolymerClayDaily

Julie continued her dark, curving theme on gently rounded squares for the bowl swap.

With several successful vases and one blowout (hot sand needs to cool slowly before handling), Julie was hooked on vessels. Watch for more on Instagram and Facebook.

Roosting after 100 days

Pamela Carmen's birds come home to roost after 100 days on PolymerClayDaily

Florida’s Pamela Carmen winds down her 100 Day project with a few more birds. Can you imagine the menagerie she’s accumulated in 100 days?

The neutral palette is a change for Pamela. Tropical colors are more to her liking and she applies slices over most any form she can find.

You’ll find her transforming vessels and found forms on Flickr and Instagram. She changes her style according to what the shape calls for. If you’ve been thinking about covering items, her work will educate you.

Polymer in the air

Emily Squires Levine's trees go to Washington on PolymerClayDaily.com

Emily Squires Levine’s dense and colorful Magical Copse bowl will be among the artworks for sale at the Smithsonian Craft Show in Washington DC April 26-29.

She joins a select group of polymer artists in this premier crafts show. From over 1000 applicants,120 are chosen to participate. We’ve come a long way from hippie beads to welcomed participants in fine crafts. See more of Emily’s works on Flickr.

At StudioMojo, the weekend behind-the-scenes newsletter, we marvel at where artists are showing and where we may end up next. If your art needs a shot of inspiration and a push toward new possibilities, join us!

Dog bowls

Pearl on PCDaily

Of course you’d guess that Baltimore’s Linda Pearl was a dog lover from her bowls in the swap at the Virginia conference. You might also sense that her background is in pottery. And her shapes and treatments have a distinctly Japanese feel to them.

Pearl on PCDaily

She showed me how she cut a shape and let it slump inside a hemisphere cake bowl creating a graceful shallow dish shape.

Pearl on PCDaily

She transferred her images from toner copies and played with various textures and metallic finishes.

Linda’s Facebook page is pretty sparse and she swears that better online presence is on her to-do list. Click on the images here to see more.

This crop of bowls was a particularly good one and we’ll cover it more completely in Saturday’s StudioMojo.

Wrapped in quilts

tinapple_quilt_bowl_2016

A picture of a worn old quilt caught my eye. The stripes reminded me of men’s pajamas -washed and faded ones. They showed up in this polymer veneer for a maple bowl turned by my husband.

Taking a hint from Emily Squires Levine, I’m starting to make a habit of using my scraps at the end of the day. Of course the carefree scrap vessels often turn out to be my favorites.

Tinapple on PCDaily

You can see a few in-process photos on my Instagram page.

On my desk

There’s nothing like a deadline to focus attention. These 2 1/2″ diameter bowls are for a conference swap this summer. Thirty are required and the idea of making 30 of anything is daunting to those of us who happily flit from project to project.

By limiting myself to translucent shibori-like blues, I’m concentrating on patterns and shapes. Right now, they’re perched (not glued) on their bases for easy packaging and transporting. I’ll attach the mix-and-match bottoms on site.

These little delights feed my enthusiasm for small decorative items. With their varying pedestal heights and shapes, they create an intriguing grouping.

Repeating a new technique or design 30 times can be very instructive and before you know it, you have a body of work that veers off in a new direction.

You can see how I’ve been mulling over bowls for a while on my Pinterest board.

If you’re interested in learning more about adding touches of personal style to your home join my class at Maureen Carlson’s at the end of July. Have a super weekend!

Before and after polymer

Levine on PCDaily

Pennsylvania’s Emily Squires Levine used her Artchain Challenge to show us these Then & Now works. Inspired by Karin Noyes’ polymer bowls, Emily formed her first version in the mid-1990’s around a custard dish. It drooped when she removed the warm clay from the form but she was undeterred.

Fast forward to this fall and you’ll see how far Emily has come. In fall 2014 she created a flower pot of wavy tendrils in muted greens and metallic golds, part of her Sargassum series that appeared in the Racine Art Museum exhibit.

Levine on PCDaily

Emily’s bowls, eggs and tiles depend on her own strong color palette and exploit the negaitve spaces between elements.

Browsing through her galleries of bowls and polymer/resin tiles on her site and photos on Facebook and Flickr may set you off on your own journey of exploration.

Be sure to keep a photo of your first efforts!

Coaxing polymer to leather

Richardson on PCDaily

Cincinnati’s Kathy Richardson likes to coax polymer to look like whatever she fancies.

Here she fancies rugged leather and turquoise vessels. She takes 3 1/2″ glass jars and covers them with rough-edged slabs of leathery polymer. She weaves a collar from strips and adds a real turquoise nuggets in chunky bezels.

Kathy takes a welcome departure from the cane slice covered approach to vessels. See more on Flickr, Etsy and her OutofTimeDesigns blog.

Polymer poultry

McDill on PCDaily

You may see a teapot where Layl McDill sees a fanciful chicken. It flew out of her studio as soon as it was finished.

Layl layers slices from her brightly patterned canes onto vases, pitchers, teapots and more. She piles on the color (see the in-process shot below), hoping to catch the viewer’s eye and inspire wonder.

McDill on PCDaily

In this issue of The Polymer Arts, Layl is one of four featured artists who approach polymer with whimsey and humor.

Layl adds to her site regularly and puts her most recent work on her Facebook page.

 

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