Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Out of the Studio

I keep meaning to blog about our BAO challenges but somehow, it always escapes me.  Anyway, our latest color challenge was to create something using 3 colors from this photo.  The photo is a print by Obsolete World

And as usual, I hadn't started making anything until the last minute.  Sadly, but fortunately for me, my metal clay guild meeting was cancelled due to the hurricane, so it freed up my afternoon. So, while the family was upstairs bonding over Hurricane Irene, I was downstairs in my studio with Tess Gerritson's "The Keepsake" playing in the background. Safe and sound.

Anyway, after I made these earrings, I made one of my reversible beads.


And after that?  I  started working on filling some orders.  Here's a few of the beads.  Can you tell I've had a few marathon bead making days and evenings?  I always seem to get so much more done working late into the wee hours.  I'm really going to have to change these habits as school is starting up again and I won't have the luxury of sleeping in anymore.

Did you see Heather Powers blog post about Pinterest?  I've been hearing about Pinterest, I've glanced at it a couple of times, but decided to give it a go after reading Heather's post.  I haven't spent much time with it yet, but know that it's definitely someplace I could get lost in . . . for days.  So if you can't find me here, I just might be there! 

Monday, August 29, 2011

Marvelous Monday

Leroy Bayerl is a self-taught artist whose hollow wooden vessels have earned national acceptance through juried exhibitions across the country.  His attention to design detail and material choices make his work sing.  Although I enjoyed looking at all his photos from afar, I was smitten with them up-close.  Enjoy and have a marvelous Monday!

Here's how he describes his process:  “I start with the finest timbers available. Each vessel is hand-turned on a lathe the first time while still green – and then turned again to its final dimension after drying. I give each piece its unique character by texturing, carving, or dying – then finish it with oil, wax, lacquer or urethane.”
            Desert Ironwood and Birdseye Maple

Box Elder burl with walnut legs and lid, enamelled parts

spalted Maple and Ebony

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Out of the Studio

Here's a little that's been going on in my studio this week.  Other than cleaning, placing a few orders and organizing to get ready to show at a local shop, I've pulled out one of the stones I got in Israel and started working on it.  First came the rough sketch that I laid onto the cleaned metal.  Next, I made the bezel for the cab and placed the stone inside to check the fit.

And finally, I placed the cab over dental floss which was laid in the bezel as I hadn't pierced the backplate yetThe piece will be textured in sort of an organic pattern to mimic the stone.  

Monday, August 22, 2011

Marvelous Monday

Although this couple have spent 27 out of their 37 years living aboard boats, they met 9000 ft. above sea level in Colorado where they both worked on a dude ranch.  They now have a home base in Bali, while their other home is Cuchura, a sailboat that has been described as "one of the most beautiful boats you'll ever see".  They're currently sailing around the South Pacific with friends visiting the primitive islands of Northern Vanuatu and the Solomons.  It's on adventures like these where they collect unusual pieces for their one-of-a-kind jewelry.

The name of their business is Eb-u, which is an Indonesian name given to a mature woman as a form of endearment and respect.  They define Eb-u as more than a jewelry company, it's a way of life.  Their story is fascinating.  I enjoyed reading about them in an article about their life and work which can be found in their flickr pages (under the "Artisans" tab).  I originally found them through flickr when they uploaded the last picture shown below to my Crackling with Polymer Clay group.  When going through their flickr photos, I didn't think I'd ever make it out alive.  Their work is so unique and exciting. Here's a few photos to picque your interest.  Hope you enjoy and have a marvelous Monday!

This first ring has brass zipper surrounding textured polymer and amber set in sterling silver as an adjustable ring . . . SOLD.

A fossil ammonite from Morocco is set in silver and set off by ammonite textured polymer (also SOLD).

"Karma Circle" - made from extruded polymer.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Isn't life weird when you go to some place that is so large and filled with so many people, that you bump into someone you know? I was telling my friend how last night we went to a Red Sox game and lo and behold, of all the 35,000 or so people that were there, we

end up sitting behind an old neighbor. Literally. His 4 seats were right in front of our 4 seats.We've all had these experiences of travelling somewhere far away from home and bumping into people you know. Strange, huh?  My daughter came home just for this game so we could do our yearly family outing there. It's just such a fun environment to be in and a great place where you can embarass your kids in public and get away with it. Julienne now seems impervious to our antics and she is now acting just as goofy as we were trying to embarass Lily.  Score!

Anyway, why a state of flux? Two reasons actually. I had been running low on flux (used to keep metal clean, and needed to make the solder flow) this week. As luck would have it, a job came last week in that required repetitive soldering.  My supplier stopped carrying the Superior No. 6 flux that I always used, so I had to purchase it through the internet. Rather than wait three or 4 days, I decided to try my hand at the cupronil I had (which is an anti-firescale/flux combination spray bottle) again. The times I used it previously, it made a mess of my soldering pad. Like I should really care, right? Turns out, I really enjoyed working with it. It kept the metal beautiful and no more bubbling flux. The only thing that I see happening is the spray nozzle clogs a bit and you get some wonky sprays happening. I also have a bottle of Firescoff (similar product) that's been sitting on my bench that was never used. I  picked it up to use it first, but as luck would have it, it wouldn't even spray as it was totally clogged. 

The other reason I'm in a state of flux is I had way too many ideas floating around in my head and in my journal but I couldn't get to any of them until the job was done. I don't know which is worse. Not having the time to get into the studio, or being in the studio, and not having the time to do what you really want to do. And funny how today, of all days, I get an email from Craftcast that was titled, of all things, "Are you overwhelmed with great ideas, and wondering how to make them happen".  Don't you sometimes feel that the universe it speaking directly to you?

And then there's back to school shopping.  Fortunately though, Lily always seems to know exactly what she wants and where she has to go.  So with her, there's no mindless wandering in malls.  Thank God.

But before I can get back in the studio, I'm putting a necklace together that I had promised I would make for a friend.  It involves suede lace and coin pearls.  After it was all put together yesterday, I put it on and wouldn't you know it . . . it doesn't hang right so it's back to the drawing board today for me. 

Monday, August 15, 2011

Marvelous Monday

This week I figured I'd share some inspirational work made from polymer clay.  I recently came across this artist's work (her flickr name is julli_ya - sorry, I couldn't locate her real name) and loved these bangles she made - doesn't this look like yarn?  She also has a flickr page where you can view more of her work.  I have to go make me some bangles!  Have a marvelous Monday!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Marvelous Monday

At first glance of Candone Wharton's work, I thought her ceramics were a mixed media of some sort.  I wondered whether it was fiber or even possibly beading. 

I was surprised and amazed at her use of carving to create such wonderful texture.  Below is a photo of a piece made from coils that were flattened and carved.

Mixing raku with these beautiful textures, makes for some really exciting work.  Here's a few samples of the extraordinary work that she creates.  I hope you enjoy and have a marvelous Monday!

Friday, August 5, 2011

A Day at the MFA

Yesterday I finally made it over to the MFA to see the Dale Chihuly exhibit.  And I even rememberd to bring my camera, hence actual photos for a change.  I wasn't quite sure what to expect in terms of a crowd seeing as this is basically the last week of the exhibit. There was a rather long line out in the front of the museum and inside it was a bit crowded.  The red chandelier below looks to me a bit like a firecracker frozen in time.  Much of his work is now done by his team, but I've shown some of his renderings that were included with the exhibit.


Ikebana Boat


These photos are from a room called the Persian ceiling.  His rondels and sea creatures really do appear to be floating up there.  Can you see the octopus in the photo on the left?  I took the picture on the right so you could get a feel for the room and the effect of the colors from above shining on the walls.  

It's rather mind boggling as to how all these pieces get shipped and installed.  I've included a link here if you want to see a short film of some of this exhibit.

Today Luca's being brought to Camp Bob and we're leaving for a long weekend in Sunapee, NH.   I probably won't be able to sneak out to the Sunapee fair as I'll have my family with me this trip.   But hopefully the weather will cooperate and we'll be spending lots of time on the lake.  Have a great weekend!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Marvelous Monday

Hideaki Miyamura is a potter from New Hampshire who grew up in Japan and spent 5 years apprenticing with a Japanese master.   During this apprenticeship, his assignment was to develop new glazes, mainly Tenmoku glazes, in a brown-black color with an iridescent quality.   During this time, he completed more than 10,000 test pieces. 

Over the last few years he's discovered new glazes which combine crystallization with iridescence (which had never been done before).  He calls this newest glaze "Yohen Crystal Glaze". Yohen means "stars glistening in a night sky".  More of his remarkable work can be found on his website.  I hope you enjoy and have a marvelous Monday!