Sunday, 31 October 2010

PS Please be my friend

Feeling a bit lonesome today. I know lots of you are reading my blog... so please join as a friend or even post a comment. I'll be ever so grateful!!

Even more 'worthwhile' distractions

Cruising around the internet is probably my distraction of choice because I kid myself, 'it's working really' Right.?!

Anyway I did come across this little gem  It's a bit like CraftHaus, but based in Australia. It has lots of new (to me) jewellery to look at, some good discussions going and a really fab list of links. With those alone you have literally days of 'worthwhile' distractions to keep you ( I mean ME)  from getting down to proper work.
I've listed them below so have fun, hey after all it IS the weekend

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Craft Central- a fantastic resource for all crafts people

Craft Central,  is a great organization. I've been a member for about 3 years and as well as exhibiting there with the WOW group I'm taking part in their MADE IN CLERKENWELL Christmas event for the first time. 

I'm on the 5th floor of the St.John's square building ( don't worry they have a lift) 
They also run a really good ongoing education program for members ( only £40.00 per year) about every aspect or running a small business, marketing, PR and general creative endeavours etc . VGFM IMHO!

Craft Central: 2 Buildings. 90 Designers. The Ultimate Shopping Treat!Special Launch Night on Thursday 25 Nov, 5-8pm (Join us for Love Brownies treats, washed down with Kopparberg cider!)

Late Night Shopping on Friday 26 Nov, 12noon - 8pm
Avoid the High Street crowds on Saturday 27 & Sunday 28 Nov, 12noon - 6pm
Venue: CRAFT CENTRAL HAS TWO GREAT BUILDINGS, 33-35 St John’s Square London EC1M 4DS and 21 Clerkenwell Green, London EC1R 0DX
Admission: £2.50 per person, under 16’s free
I have a limited number of free tickets.. just ask me. 

Sunday, 24 October 2010

From Oman to Cricklewood !

I've taught students from all over London, all over Europe and even India and Singapore which has been wonderful. Emma West came over all the way from Oman specially for a 3 day polymer clay/metal clay class. 

Well done to her for making the journey, we had a fun 3 days and she made some lovely things. She has her own jewellery boutique in Muscat and has promised me she's going to spread the word about polymer and metal clay- more converts to our cause- hurrah

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Blogger glitches

No I haven't gone off on a long holiday around the Caribbean or emmigrated to Alaska ( altho it has been suggested!)

Having probs with uploading pics to my blog and as a picture speaks a thousand words, I'm not sure what to do


Saturday, 16 October 2010

Come and learn how to do this.....

A bit of eye candy heading for the weekend. Some polymer clay bead samples etc. to illustrate what we would cover in a days 'introduction' class.Quite a lot eh?! If you interested in learning more you can contact where I teach or if you want a one to one lesson at my studio in North West London, call me on 07967 978061.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Daily Art Muse, a(nother) must see blog

I've probably mentioned it before but Susan Lomuto's is one of my absolute favourite blogs. She's just re designed the site and it looks fab. She has a knack of finding the most fantastic artists and unusual art. It's always food for thought and inspires me on a daily basis to take notice of the world outside my own particular niche.

Check it put and expand your horizons!!

In Susan Lomuto's own words,

'DAM explores the global landscape of handcrafted excellence by showcasing the best in contemporary fine craft. The site inspires artists, designers and collectors worldwide and is frequently used as an educational resource in traditional classroom settings (high school and college) as well as online learning environments'

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

My personal route to polymer and metal clay

I'd like to say that I made fantastic models with polymer clay as a kid, but I don't think it was around then or that I always wanted to do something arty, but that wasn't it either, at least not consciously!!

About 10 years ago however, I went back to college and did a diploma in figurative sculpture at Heatherley's College and totally loved it. My final disertation was about the American artist Alexander Calder, one of my enduring heroes, and my exhibition piece was inspired by his work Le Cirque.

Calder's Le Cirque

Debbie's version!

So far so not polymer clay, but during my research about using wire and colour I found Barbara McGuire's book, Wire in Design and thro' her, polymer clay, metal clay and jewellery making as a natural extension after that.

So, some 8 years on, I've returned to my first love, life modelling the figure in clay and, yup, I still absolutely love it. I'm sharing a few pics of work in progress

The moral is- you never forget your first love!

Friday, 8 October 2010

WOW Jewels!

I'm a member of a small (but perfectly formed) jewellery consortium called WOW Jewels! There are 8 of us, we got together about 3 years years ago and put on shows once or twice a year. Our next event is 8th-11th December at Craft Central in Clerkenwell, London EC1. There'll be lots of sumptious jewellery to peruse, mulled wine, some tempting special offers and , I promise, no carols! 

What I like about the group is we all come from such different backgrounds and traditions, jewellery wise. I think this is a real plus for the visitors to our events- it's the 'something for everyone' thing.
and last but not least
Enjoy browsing through some lovely work.

I'm off to teach polymer clay this weekend at the Mid Cornwall School of Jewellery in one of the most beautiful parts of the country. I LOVE MY JOB- have I said that before?!!

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Most definitely creative in Corbieres

To be honest you don't normally go on these things for the food and the sightseeing! The great tutors, new ideas, interesting people and bit of shopping-of course. But last week's trip to Luc Sur Orbieu in the South West of France ticked every box.

Canal du Midi

Andy and the boys, paella evening

Just over 50 people from all over the world got together in a community hall in a tiny village in the middle of the French countryside surrounded by vineyards. Kylee and her husband Andy, residents of said village seemed to have galvanized the entire population (about 1000) to the help with the event; cooking us truly spectacular food, putting us up in their homes and generally just being supportive to the cause of polymer clay!

Ah yes, polymer clay, I almost forgot, that's why we were there. 5 really fabulous tutors covering a diverse spectrum of work. First up for my group was Laurie Mika.  It was great to explore new surface design and techniques and think more deeply about meaning behind one's work. Lorretta Lam's beautiful wearable Inro's next. For me as much an exercise in attention to detail and finish, not always my strong point, as subtle colour choices and design

Lisa Pavelka's faux batik session

My 'Laurie Mika'

Ronna Sarvas Weltman's session  really blew me away. We covered a huge amount of ground and my head was full to bursting with ideas as a result. For me, the challenge is how to take all these wonderfully strong styles and techniques and to come up with something that becomes your own rather than a mini version of what the artist has made.

Creating custom findings is so important and Denise Peck took us through a 101 session on how to make headpins, clasps, earwires etc. A timely reminder for me that I can actually do this and to stop being lazy about it! Finally, but by no means least, a great session with Lisa Pavelka . Tips and tricks galore shared with great generosity and humour. 

In fact generosity of spirit, humour and, as the Irish would say, great craic sum up the event. It was indeed tres coool!!

Laurie Mika, Kylee and Lisa Pavelka


My London Polymer Clay buddies, Sue Margretts and Rebecca Thickbroom