Feb 162017
 

#3 James cover

Today I have for you my third polymer clay sculpted figure of 2017. Meet James. Isn’t he sweet little boy? If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook you may recognize the butterfly as the same one I made several of to send to the Into the Forest art installation.

That’s the fun thing about caning: you can make them in whatever size you need.

James is the fourth project in Maureen Carlson’s neighborhood kids series in her book, How to Make Clay Characters. Her little guy is named playful Pete and he is holding marbles in his hand. I’m trying to make sure my figures are different from Maureen’s creations, even if just a little bit.

I have discovered that I love doing the details on the clothes, shoes, the hair and the props, but find doing the hands and faces more difficult. Probably because they are fiddly and require precision, lol.

#3 James back

I’ve also discovered that I can be quite the expert at finding anything else to do when it comes time to working on the hands and faces! However once I plunged in and made myself do them I was pleased to find that they all came out just a little bit better than on the previous figures. In fact I didn’t squish up and re-roll James’ face once! (Something I did several times on all of the other characters.) So that’s encouraging, I slowly seem to be getting the hang of this. Which, of course, is the whole point of practice.

If you would like to make the butterfly cane that I used you will find a free tutorial for it by Claire Wallis at CraftArtEdu.

Hope you have a creative day!

Watch the James-Looking on in Wonder-2017 Polymer Clay Figure Challenge #3 360° video at YouTube.

Feb 012017
 

Today I am pleased to introduce you to Patricia. She is the second in my 2017 polymer clay figure challenge. She is the third of the neighborhood kids projects in Maureen Carlson’s book, How to Make Clay Characters.

2017 #2 Patricia -Super Bowl

I had it in my mind to give Patricia something other than a football to hold as I had given the other two projects pets/animals. The little girl had a kitty cat on her lap and Philip, the first of my challenge figures for this year, had birds singing along with him.

2017 #2 Patricia -Super Bowl 2

But then I realized that the Patriots would be playing in the AFC championship game and if they won that they’d be going on to the Super Bowl, which as you know, indeed they are! So I decided to keep the football and turned my attention to making a Patriots logo on Patricia’s shirt.

patriots logo stencils

This involved finding the logo online, printing it out at 1 inch wide and then cutting the tiniest five-part stencil I have ever seen! I’m quite pleased with how it came out. For a while there I was afraid it would be a total mess. But it’s just a matter of practicing controlling the consistency & amount of paint.

2017 #2 Patricia -Super Bowl 3

As with Philip, there are a million and one things wrong with this figure. But I am happy that her hands are marginally better than his, even though very far from perfect, and her face is marginally better, although there are many improvements that could be made. I really enjoyed doing details like her shoe laces and the curly hair.

And if the patriots do win the Super Bowl this Sunday I will definitely be making a championship banner for Patricia to hold!

For a 360° view of Patricia, check out her video on YouTube.

Jan 192017
 

In my year-in-review post a couple weeks ago I alluded to the possibility of doing another personal polymer clay challenge for 2017. As I was disappointed in several of the things I didn’t get done in 2016 I’ve decided that this needs to happen.

My dragon challenge of 2015 was a success, but oh-so-much work! And it took oh-so-much time. Since I’ve got more going on these days this year’s challenge will be a little less demanding. 🙂

My goal this year is to make two polymer clay figures each month. I’ll share the results on or around the 15th and 30th of every month. As you can see from the photo and video, I’ve already completed the first of 24 sculptures. 

philip make a joyful noise

I was really pleased with the more relaxed pace of working on this piece over the course of two weeks. I could do a little bit here, a little bit there and was able to take the time to add things or make changes as I liked, rather than being constrained by a strict deadline.

I named this sculpture “Make a Joyful Noise,” and the boy’s name is Phillip. I know there are many, many things that could be improved, but I’m still happy with him and his flock of singing friends. Phillip is based on Studious Stan from Maureen Carlson’s How to Make Clay Characters.

For me the trickiest part of making this was the hands, they just gave me a terrible time. But I’ve found a really nice YouTube channel with lots of sculpting help and this video: Tips on Sculpting Tiny Fairy Hands. I’m excited to try her tips on my next sculpture!

For a 360° view watch the Polymer Clay 2017 Figure Challenge-#1 Make A Joyful Noise video on YouTube.

Have you set yourself any goals or challenges for the upcoming year? It’s never too late to start a personal challenge!

Happy creating!

Apr 032015
 

friday findings-polymer clay inspiration.JPG

In today’s video I share several of my favorite resources for learning polymer clay techniques. Whether you’d like to sculpt or cane, make jewelry or mixed media pieces, there’s something for you.

Here are links to the books I mention in the video, in no particular order:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Friday Findings-Polymer Clay Inspiration video over at YouTube.

Mar 112015
 

I thought you’d like to know…

chocolates class collage.jpg

…my Polymer Clay Chocolates class is live over at CraftArtEdu! You can learn how to make seven different miniature chocolates – in polymer clay.

Click on the photo for more info and a free class preview. There’s a 20% discount if you sign up by Saturday, March 14.

Happy creating!

Jan 132015
 

Happy What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday everyone!

2015 01 14 woyww chocolate box class

Today’s desk shows me starting work on a new class over at CraftArtEdu.com. That white box in the top left is where I take the photos for each step-by-step shot. I love my mini Gorilla-pod tripod for my camera, cuz it lets me position it at exactly the right angle. Of course the camera isn’t in the shot, it’s in my hand, taking the shot. 🙂

2014-02-19-woyww-chocolate-charms-close-up

Remember these from last February? This is what I’ll be teaching in the class, how to make several different types of miniature chocolates from polymer clay. It should be fun!

jungle baby quilt (1)

Those of you who stopped by last week wanted to see photos of the finished baby quilt. Here it is, all done.

jungle baby quilt (2)

I just love that jungle print, so cute, and the prairie points added a bit of time but are a nice touch.

Wondering why I’m posting photos of my desk? Well it’s What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday, the day we all go visiting the creative spaces of creative people all over the world. The blog link party starts at Julia’s.

Happy creating, all!

Jan 082015
 

For a while now I’ve been thinking about doing some sort of creative challenge. We all need to stretch ourselves in order to grow, and sometimes it’s too easy just to watch another YouTube video rather than go make something myself.

procrastionation-pinterest

Know what I mean?

Several things came together towards the end of December to convince me that I needed to take the jump and make a commitment

At the end of the year Wendy Jorre de St Jorre posted a collage of all 52 tree canes she had made in 2014. That had been her challenge to herself, to make a tree cane each week, and I was impressed that she completed it!

Tree cane #38 "Tiffany Style Tree" by Wendy Jorre de St Jorre.

You can see those canes and more on her Pinterest board. This one is my favorite. Wow.

In the Winter 2014 issue of The Polymer Arts, Anke Humpert is talking about creativity and limits. She points out that “the absence of time restrictions and boundaries or rules does not necessarily lead to many ideas flowing freely.”

She goes on to point out that it’s usually the opposite, “Having some sort of restriction does lead to a kind of kick in the butt and encourages ideas to sprout.”

TPA winter 2014

You can read that article in this issue, Boundaries.

 

That’s what I need: a kick in the butt.

Back in 2012 it was the Year of the Dragon, and I thought it would be fun to do something dragon themed. but I just wasn’t ready. Now, I think I am.

I hereby accept the challenge to make a dragon each week in 2015.

So without further ado, let me introduce you to Thursday’s dragon #1:

dragon #1 Errol the wanderer (1)

This is Errol. His name means ‘wanderer,’ which is why he’s hitched himself to a bangle bracelet, so he can wander with me wherever I go. 🙂

dragon #1 Errol the wanderer (4)

The background of the bracelet was done with a technique I learned in Syndee Holt’s Bangle Bracelet class over at the Polymer Clay Adventure.

dragon #1 Errol the wanderer (3)

If you’d like to keep up with my dragon creations this year, I’ve made a Thursday’s Dragon Pinterest board just for them.

dragon #1 Errol the wanderer (2)

Btw, if you’re thinking that I started a week late with my first dragon, there are 53 Thursdays in 2015, so the 52nd will be due on the last day of the year. 🙂

Happy creating all!

 

Dec 302014
 

Happy final What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday of 2014!

2014 12 31 woyww  tribal pendants (1)

Now that Christmas is over, I’ve been trying to finish up a few projects, including these Tribal Pendants from Sylvie Peraud’s CraftArtEdu.com class.

tribal pendant 1

I wasn’t happy with this first one I made, so I did two more.

2014 12 31 woyww  tribal pendants (2)

I’m loving the bright colors of the one of the right. Those are so much more me than the earthy tones of the other two. Maybe I can get it done in time to wear for New Year’s Eve. 🙂

I hope this day finds you looking forward to God’s blessings in 2015. No matter how bad things seem, there is always much to be thankful for.  (I Thessalonians 5:18)

Wondering why I’m posting photos of my desk? Well it’s What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday, the day we all go visiting the creative spaces of creative people all over the world. The blog link party starts at Julia’s.

Happy creating and Happy New Year, all!

Dec 092014
 

Happy What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday once again! I hope today doesn’t find you too frantic as you prepare for Christmas. It should be a time of joy, not stress, right? 🙂

2014 12 09 woyww polymer clay food charms

Today’s work desk shows me working on some fun miniature clay food charms. They are actually going to be used to demonstrate a few techniques in my upcoming CraftArtEdu.com class.

I’ve been wanting to make polymer clay pizza & chocolate chip cookies for some time, and this was a good excuse.  I suppose I could have used plain balls of clay, but what’s the fun in that?

No, I won’t be teaching how to make the pizza or cookies, but here are three great how to videos:

That bowl of stuff in the bottom left, the one that looks like chocolate, is actually Translucent Liquid Sculpey mixed with some solid Burnt Umber Premo clay (which is the perfect chocolate brown color.)

Not the least bit edible, but it sure looks yummy. 🙂

Whatever you’re doing today, I hope you find some time to be creative.

Wondering why I’m posting photos of my desk? Well it’s What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday, the day we all go visiting the creative spaces of creative people all over the world. The blog link party starts at Julia’s.

Happy creating, all!

 

Mar 192014
 

Last week I showed you some faux lapis lazuli beads I made using Desiree’s tutorial.

faux lapis lazuli beads (2)

This week I thought I’d try a matching pendant with the rest of the color mix.

lapis lazuli dragon pendant (2)

The purple mold is one I made with Castin’ Craft EasyMold Silicone Putty, it’s of one of the dragon cameos I made a while back.

I use the ball tool to push hard and pack the clay into the mold so it will pick up all the detail.

lapis lazuli dragon pendant (1)

Meh.

The variations in the clay mix don’t do much for the details of the pendant. Ah, well. You gotta try a lot of things that don’t work before you hit on the few that do. 🙂 Not sure whether I’m going to ball this up and start over, or bake it and try to make it work. Hmmmm……

Happy creating!