Friday, 29 July 2011

Creative food sculptures

Because i love food and because I love sculpture check out the link .

happy weekend tout le monde

The Conference begins... fanfare of trumpets

So much information packed into such a short time frame- where to begin? Actually with a massive thanks to the organisers of the conference, Jackie Truty, Katie Baum and their team. I can't even begin to image the amount of time and effort that went into producing such a well run event! Well done guys.

There was an incredible choice of presentations on offer, and I attended 10 of them. I've picked out some of the highlights for me. Sorry not many photos to show as it was mostly talking heads and sitting heads ( and in some cases sleepy heads!) 

Julia Rai and others wearing silly hats in Jeanette Le Blanc presentation about writing and how to article  
Hattie Sanderson's 'Easy Button' metal clay tips and tricks was great ( nothing to do with buttons btw) She spend an hour whizzing through a whole range of great ideas and I'm sure she wont mind me sharing some of them with you
  • rest hand and wrists on a rolled up towel for stability and to relieve stress 
  • use a lidded Tupperware box with 1/2 inch water in the bottom to keep syringes in.
  • use coated card stock for cutters for longer slabs of clay ( instead of tissue blade) 
  • use coloured plastic sheets ( cut from file dividers) as work surfaces, clay doesn't stick and also can be used as surfaces to reconstitute clay on
  • use polymer clay to make drill bit handles
  • to get rid of cracks and wrinkles when rolling out metal clay, roll clay onto a low relief brass texture plate. flip clay over to make sure both sides are wrinkle free
  • polymer clay donut to create a gem bezel setting.- Roll donut of PC. Make a pilot hole. Press gemstone into PC so the table is level with surface. Poke stone out from underneath. Place donut onto mat and centre. Roll out MC, texture and cut out. Make pilot hole in clay sheet smaller than the gemstone. Centre metal clay sheet over the polymer clay and press stone in. Dry , sand etc. set into hollow from.
There were lots more but check out her website

some of her amazing work below

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

The IPCA polymer clay retreat- Stepping into another world.

I imagine walking into the polymer clay retreat room in Chicago is a bit like walking through the wardrobe into Narnia. A large, pretty boring conference room set out with long tables and chairs was transformed by about 60 -70 polymer clay enthusiasts into another world. 

People had set up their own little worlds equipped with more tools and kit and samples of polymer clay than you could shake a stick at. Shelves had been built to accommodate yet more samples of things to buy, and elaborate work surfaces constructed full of more things in the process of being made made. One side of the room had banks of toaster ovens manned virtually round the clock and the other side of the room was table after table of amazing raffle prizes to be won.

Throughout the day there were planned and impromptu demos from the big hitters of the polymer clay world as well as others willing to share their latest tips, tricks and techniques. It was , of course, all being filmed!

Delegates from the Art Clay Conference ( we were sharing meal times in the conference venue) were walking round the room with eyes on stalks and mouths open, it was indeed a sight to behold!

Ponsawan's ring tray

Jill Palumbo

Debbie Jackson

Maureen Carlson and Barbara Forbes Lyon

Monday, 25 July 2011

Polymer and metal clay heaven by way of Chicago!

I've been back a week- although it feels like a month.- from my trip to the Metal Clay World Conference in Chicago. It was a whirlwind event starting early in the morning and ending late at night altho' admittedly that was in the bar. 

The venue was perfect for the job, a large hotel about 1 hour outside Chicago with all the facilities you needed ( and didn't need ie swimming pools, golf courses etc) Unfortunately I didn't get to see anything of Chicago which was a real shame but hey - next time.

So what did I do? Well, to start with I did Bettina Welker's Hinged bracelet pre-conference  I've long admired her work and especially these beauties. It was an illuminating day, she's a good teacher and we just about got thro it. My efforts were a bit wonkey to say the least as being precise and accurate is NOT my forte. However great learning and good fun.

One of the best things was the texture, a sponge like material used as a filter in aquariums! and then using oil paint to patinate the baked piece.

One of the absolutely best things for me was the fact that the polymer clay retreat was held at the same time in the same place. I got to meet all my polymer and metal clay friends and see what everyone was up to.... and on that note.... next episode tomorrow!

Tuesday, 19 July 2011 the quintessential diversion from work!

Wow, what an amazing site  ( found via ) Seems to be  endless collections of peoples fav images and finds that they 'pin' onto a page. 

You can 're-pin' other peoples finds etc. To be honest haven't quite sussed it out yet but suffice to say have just 'wasted ' bloody hours trying, and as I hope you'll agree have found some super cool stuff.

So some completely random images that caught my eye
you have been warned!!

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Great illustrations and very funny and NOTHING to do with jewellery- yey

Really funny blog from Allie Brosh which I found via Luan Udell's blog which is also good. The post about the simple minded dog is brill.

A bit of light relief before I tackle my packing for Chicago, in otherwords virtually nothing in my suitcase on the way out and jammed packed with stuff I've bought and probably don't need on the way back- thus was it ever so.!