Thursday, July 28, 2011

August Blog Giveaway Prize

August Blog Giveaway Prize

I thought that this month, I would give away one of my embellished Waterhouse image transfer pendants. This one features one of Waterhouse's paintings of pre-Raphaelite women, and is entitled "The Crystal Ball". It has a Renaissance look and feel and is part of my "Ancient Romance" series of pendants and bead.

If you would like a chance to win this pendant, please leave a comment after the post, either about the pendant, or perhaps how the dog days of Summer are treating you. It is hot, hot, hot and sticky here in the lowcountry of South Carolina.

As always, no purchase is necessary. If you won last month, you aren't qualified to win this month, but those are the only rules. I will leave the comments open until August 1, 2011, when I will draw a winner. If you do not have email enabled on your blog, please include an email address in your comment so I will know how to contact you.

Thanks, everyone, and happy Summer!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

My Entry in Art Bead Scene's July Challenge - Rose Mallow Garden Necklace

The painting providing the inspiration for this month's Art Bead Scene challenge is "Morning in the Garden at Vaucresson," by Edouard Vuillard.

I created the cylindrical focal bead pendant from translucent polymer clay, using an image transfer technique. The image depicted is a rose mallow bush. The translucent clay was layered onto a base clay of soft butter yellow. The translucent clay makes it appear the image is floating on the surface, and it has a soft luminescence.

JULY ABS Entry - Garden Necklace

I kept to the Garden theme by creating matching rose beads from polymer clay, which compliment the centers of the rose mallow in the image. I embellished the focal with Vintaj Magnolia leaf bead caps and added Vintaj's Deco Vines Filigree components, which are appropriate for the time the painting was created; and faceted, round Swarovski crystal with an AB finish, to symbolize the sparkle of early morning dew drops.

JULY ABS Entry - Garden Necklace

Friday, July 15, 2011

Lorelei's Blog Giveaway Winners!

Lorelei has chosen the winners of the pendants I donated to her blog giveaway this week. Mosey on over to Lorelei's blog to see more.

Pendant #1 Black Line Transfer - Not Afraid
Pendant #2 Mauve Rose - Deb
Pendant #3 Butterfly Kingdom - Julz
Pendant #4 Klimt Embellished Pendant - Nena

I would love to see what you create with these pendants, ladies. Send me photos and I'll post them here for everyone to admire!

Thanks again to everyone who commented. I appreciate the response and all the wonderful Summer recipes, to boot!

Stay tuned for MY next blog giveaway, coming soon.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Want To Win One Of My Pendants? Lorelei Eurto Is Giving Away 4 On Her Blog Today!

Lorelei Eurto Blog Feature 071311

Lorelei is one of the ladies behind ArtBeadScene, and a very talented and gifted designer in her own right, and I am thrilled to be a part of her fantastic blog giveaways.

I donated 4 image transfer pendants, some of my favorite pieces, actually, and if you would like a chance to win one, head on over to Lorelei's blog and leave a comment about the pendants or your plans for Summer. She will choose a winner at random some time tomorrow!

You can see more of Lorelei's talent on display in her Etsy shop, too.

Thanks again for letting me be a part of this, Lorelei, and good luck to everyone who enters!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Tackling The Scrap Clay Pile

Scrap Clay Striped Earrings - Olive, Lavender, Brass and Gold with Faceted Tiger Eye Drops Scrap Clay Striped Earrings - Copper and Black with Carved Jasper Flower Drops

All that experimenting last week added to my very weighty scrap clay drawer. I usually set aside a day every couple of months to either blend it all together to use for bead bases, or to marble some of the more interesting colors and run them through the pasta machine, hoping for some pretty stripedy (Julz, I haven't used that one in awhile!) patterns.

Scrap Clay Striped Earrings with Faceted Pumpkin Czech Glass Beads Scrap Clay Striped Earrings - Copper, Turquoise, Bronze with Blue Quartz Drops

There is something very cathartic about marbling, isn't there? It's not technical, not complicated, just a few minutes of fun grouping together color combinations to see what you get. I was pretty pleased with myself when these came rolling off the pasta machine.

Scrap Clay Striped Earrings with Faceted Black Onysx Beads Scrap Clay Vertical Striped Earrings with Black Carved Horn Bone Beads

I have been making more and more polymer earrings lately, something I haven't done in the past because I couldn't seem to get each piece to match the other in size well enough to make them a pair, which would drive me nuts.

The rolled strips were about 2 1/2 inches wide, so I used a square 2" cutter and cut out squares, then used a 1" x 2" rectangle cutter to divide them, either horizontally or vertically. I think I am partial to the horizontal stripes.

And the best part? My scrap clay bin is empty! I don't know about you, but I always feel a little guilty when the scrap clay starts piling up on me. It is a nice feeling to be able to see the bottom of the drawer again; and it always jumpstarts my creative urge, too.

I hope your week is a good one, wherever you are!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Am I A Color Snob?

I tried really hard this weekend to make myself use more bold brights and primary colors in my work. I realized recently that the only time I really use a lot of really vibrant color is when I'm doing image transfers.

I love color, especially tertiary colors like aubergine, mustard yellow, pumpkin, tomato red, teal and sage green; but the basic primaries and bright secondaries like orange and purple and green aren't really my thing, and don't show up very prominently in my non-transfer work. The color palettes I gravitate to are muted, semi-transparent colors created from translucent clay and alcohol ink.

I visit artists' websites all the time and see all these vibrant pinks and purples and yellows and oranges and greens and blues, but I tend to talk myself out of using them. I see color like that, especially a riot of color in one piece, and the first thing that comes to mind is "LOUD!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

I would be happy with a roomful of translucent clay and alcohol ink. Really, I could live the rest of my life just using those; and as long as Ranger doesn't run out of Walnut Stain Distressed embossing powder, I'm set. I don't even like silver all that much, and prefer to use it only as a backing. I usually use gold as a backing or as a means to create my signature antique brass and copper blends.

Just like my Momma's pimento cheese is my comfort food, my little stash of antique brass and copper blends are my comfort clay, but I set out this weekend to push that envelope that artists are supposed to push. I made the 200 mile round trip to the "local" craft store and bought some Premo Purple, Orange, Fuchsia, Cadmium Yellow, Cobalt Blue, and Candy Pink. Oh, and please forgive a mini rant here, but whomever invented flourescent polymer clay should be strung up by his toenails. Good Gawd. To each his own, I reckon, but with polymer clay struggling for respectability and recognition as a serious artistic medium, do we really need glow-in-the-dark clay?

I came back and put the new colors out on my worktable and circled around them for what seemed like hours, waiting for divine inspiration as to what to do with them, before finally opening the Purple and Fuchsia. I just couldn't quite bring myself to tackle the pepto bismol pink.

Six hours later, most of what I ended up with went in the trash or the Butt Uglies Jar (oh, and we're up to 25 gallon jar #8, by the way.) This purple marbled piece was actually the best of the bunch. No lie. My mother loves purple and will have a field day with the jar, about the only good thing that came of my color experiment; and the sea green, the cobalt, and especially the cadmium yellow and candy pink have been consigned to the back of the clay drawer, the very back, behind the dried-out, never-to-be-used-again Studio clay.

Deep Blue Sea Pendant 3a Lime Plum and Wavy Gold Pendant

Distressed Retro Aqua Metallic Pendant with Lime Green Accent 1 Deep Blue Sea Pendant 1

I went back to the translucent clay and alcohol inks. I did get a really bright, lime green, and a really lovely carribbean blue, even an icy/silvery blue piece.

Liquid Gold Bar Leopard Print Pendant Embellished Leopard Print Pendant with Artistic Jasper, Bone and DZI Bead

Faux Etched Matte Glass Wormwood Pendant Small Faux Etched Matte Glass Wormwood Pendant

Then to make myself feel less guilty about wasting two whole days with nothing to show for it, I played with some stamps I just got from my friend Tonja Lenderman, of Tonja's Treasures at Etsy. I LOVE her leopard print stamp, and her wormwood stamp, which I think will make a great faux palm jasper.

I guess there are worse things than being a color snob.

Friday, July 1, 2011

July Blog Prize Winner - Julz!

Thanks to everyone who commented on the July prize, a collaborative effort between Jill Kollmann of JKollmann Jewelry, to whom I also give a huge thank you for helping me out this month.

We had 7 comments (the comment by Anonymous doesn't count because that was actually Jill) this month, and the winner, drawn at random, is #2, Julz!

Congratulations, Julz. I will contact you shortly for your mailing address. I hope you love the necklace as much as Jill and I loved creating it for you.

Next month I'm on my own again, in fact, I'm on my own for the rest of the year, but I have a special prize planned for August, one of my Vintaj-embellished cylinder bead pendants, so stay tuned for the reveal coming soon!

Thanks again, everyone!