Archive | January 2016

Week Four #2016PCChallenge

I’ve made it to week four! I’ve actually been doing quite a bit of polyclay playing this year so it gets to the end of the week and I have to sit back and think ok, what did I remember to take photos of? Which project shall I post about?

 

This week I decided to go with the dragon scales work I’ve been doing. This is based on Deb Hart’s Dragonscale Gems tutorial that can be found at Craft Art Edu. I didn’t use her exact colours but it still turned out pretty kewl. The first thing I tried out was a bracelet. I haven’t managed to find a form the size I like to wrap my scrap clay around yet so this one is quite a big bracelet. Having said that I actually like how big and chunky it is. If ever I lose weight I figure I’ll just push it up to the top of my arm instead!!

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So after I baked the scrap clay form I went to work on making the clay, then I filled the outside of the scrap clay form with the cane slices. I baked that and so far that’s as far as I’ve gotten with this particular piece. I still need to sand and polish it and put some black clay around the inside to neaten it up a bit. Once that is done I think it will look quite awesome!

I still had plenty of the clay cane left over so I decided to shrink it down, found one of my bezels and filled it with a bunch of slices. I didn’t mind how the bracelet looked all flat, but this time I wanted it to be more 3D and I have to admit I much prefer it this way! I may need to make a smaller bracelet or cuff with 3D scales rather than smooth flat scales.

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I really loved how this one turned out. So I then decided I’d make a dragon egg. In case you don’t know it, I LOVE dragons. I have loved dragons since I was very, very young. So this cane was right up my alley! Then upon re-discovering polyclay in my 30’s I have spent time trying to make dragons and all sorts of other things. No matter how far away from dragon’s I travel in my exploration of the clay, I always seem to come back to them. I’ve always wanted to explore doing dragon eggs, so I thought now was the time…

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That is what I came up with. I’m not sure if I’m completely finished with it yet. It keeps calling for me to put some sworovski flatbacks on it, so I may just have to do that before I call it done. I’m not sure what kind of dragon would hatch from this kind of egg but I’d sure like to see it one day! I still have left over cane, perhaps that’s what I need to do with it?!

This cane definitely excited me with all the amazing possibilities. This is only my first ever attempt at the cane, just wait until I start trying different colour combinations!! Remember to come back next week to see what polyclay creation I’ve come up with!

Week 3 in the #2016PCChallenge

I actually finished this week pretty early so I’ve done a bunch more than just this weeks project which is awesome because I am starting the markets this week and I want to have a heap of stock to sell. This weeks project was done specifically to sell at the market. I also managed to finally complete a few things I had begun last year which is nice too.

So this week I found a tutorial via a blog I follow on blogspot… I’m sorry I don’t remember which one it was now or have a link to it. They didn’t make hair pins but I saw the design and thought it would be well suited to hair pins:

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This picture was taken after they had come out of the oven and cooled down, ready for a few extra embellishments.

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This one is the final product. I put some sculpey gloss glaze over all of them and added some swarovski gems in random spaces in some of them:

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Others I left plain:

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Then there was a couple of pairs where I added extra petals inside before the baking process:

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Hopefully they sell! And hopefully they stay together and don’t fall apart!!

Week 2 #PCChallenge2016

Well I’m a day late for this post seeing as it’s the 15th January 2016 now but better late than never!

This weeks polymer clay piece is inspired by Faerie Magazine‘s dragons and mermaid gallery. They have some really amazing stuff for anyone who is a true Dragon Lover, which I am! I’ve always been interested in dragons and inspired by them since I can remember. So it was only natural when I re-discovered polyclay a couple years ago now that I would venture in to dragon making. I have done some dragons… ok, a lot of dragons, in that time but making miniatures doesn’t sing to me.

So when I saw dragon eggs I thought oh man, that would be awesome! I just never got around to making any … yet. Then I saw some pendants and because it was small and simple I thought why not? So I got one of my bezels and plopped some black clay in it, textured it, added a tiny rose quartz cabachon and some glow-in-the-dark polyclay and… voila!

 

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My very first dragon shell pendant.

OK, so I’m not so happy with it, but that’s ok, we all have to begin somewhere right? Firstly I really need to make sure I’m working on an extremely clean surface with extremely clean hands. I have to say, the clean hand thing is no easy thing! I feel like I can wash and wipe my hands 100 times but as soon as I touch white clay or the glow-in-the-dark clay it manages to pull more of the darker clay from the dips in my fingerprints or something. It’s quite frustrating!!

So I’m really unhappy with how dirty the glow-in-the-dark clay is. I’m also disappointed with how much the rose quartz faded in the heat. You can’t even see the rose in it anymore. Then the very middle spike I can see the very end of my armature which is most frustrating because I didn’t see that before I baked it and I don’t think there’s anything I can do about that now! So I guess I just strike this one down to a first attempt and do better next time.

It was fun though and I can see myself quite likely making more of these cute little necklaces in the future. Not bad for my 2nd completed project for the year so far!!

Week One #2016PCChallenge

Can you believe the first week of 2016 is already done and dusted?!

I can actually. I’ve done a lot and feel pretty accomplished and on task. One of my tasks this year that I have set myself is to do one polymer clay piece a week so that by the end of 2016 I’ll have done at least 52 COMPLETED polymer clay pieces. The completed part is important for me because I am amazing at beginning projects… the completion though is something I need more practice with. After this week though I do wonder where people find the time to do everything in their lives. It’s not like I have a full-time muggle job to get to 5 days a week or anything. I would end up with no time for anything at all if I did!

It is my intention to blog about each polymer clay piece I do each week so that’s what this blog is meant to be about. Win/win being I not only do a polymer clay piece each week, I also blog each week! Better than last years effort by far if I can pull this off 😀

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So here goes! I started off being inspired by Claire Wallis’ tutorial for Faux Knit weave in polymer. I did manage to do a couple (see above photo) but I wasn’t really happy with them. From that I kind of moved on to weaving…

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It wasn’t my intention but that is where I landed. I used my Makins’ extruder for the logs simply because I am lazy and I do like the ease of uniformity. Once I’d done the weave I squished it together a bit and used a brayer to roll over the top to squash it down some.

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Once I was happy with that… ok, not happy but couldn’t be bothered being a perfectionist 😛 I ignored the gaping holes and instead decided to put a sheet of glow-in-the-dark polymer clay underneath it, cut it in to a heart… because hearts… and of course border it with some more glow-in-the-dark polymer clay.

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Once that was done I put a couple of small holes in the top left and right corners of the heart, twisted and mashed up the rest of the clay and rolled it in to a not-so-uniform log.

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As you can see I kind of flip-flop between wanting perfection but being too lazy to actually strive for it in reality. I figure if I don’t do my absolute best, when it doesn’t turn out as awesome in reality as I think it is in my head… well I have my lack of precision to blame and can always convince myself that if I just tried harder and took more time with it, imagine how much better it would have been. Or is that just a cop-out?

So after I rolled it in to a log, deciding just how many beads I wanted… I went with 7 on each side because as much as I love even numbers odd numbers tend to look more pleasing to the eye *sigh* I then cut the log in to 1cm sections once I made sure the log reached 14cms, thus ensuring I would have 7 beads for each side of the necklace.

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At this point I wasn’t actually sure how I was going to turn it in to a necklace. The holes I put in the heart were too small for suede or hemp, which meant my only real option was wire. I could have then made the holes big enough in the beads to thread them on to some black suede but because I do love wire working a lot I figured why not make the whole thing wire, so I did the beads up in my little contraption here…

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As they were baking in the oven the gears were still churning around in my head and I finally decided how I would piece it all together. So once it was all nice and cool I began…

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I got out some seed beads, got out some 20 gauge bronze wire and began to put together a pattern. I’m not sure why but I thought it might not end up as long as I would like. So in addition to the bead links I did a couple rose and bead links. In the end I left out two of those links because I realised it was actually getting quite long! To finish it off I attached one of my magnetic rhinestone clasps.

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And this is it! My first completely finished polymer clay and wire wrapped piece for 2016! I haven’t seen what it looks like when it’s all glow-in-the-darky yet but I imagine it’ll look pretty awesome with some glowy bits peaking through from the back of the heart and the bits and blobs of it mixed around in the matching beads.

I’ve realised this is going to be quite the challenge after all this year. To complete a piece every week. It sounds easy… 52 projects a year… but in reality, I guess we’ll see. I haven’t even started my Uni course yet and I still want to find a couple more regular face painting gigs! Let alone the more time I want to spend out in nature like today with the kids at the Ennogera Reservoir. It was really beautiful there and while I may or may not have gotten a bit burnt, I can see us spending more time there this year having picnics and swimming and walking the tracks.

So fingers crossed I can succeed in getting through this #2016PCChallenge as well as all the other stuff!

I’m always happy to read your thoughts on my posts so don’t be shy, leave a comment if you dare.

Either way have a beautiful day, In Joy!

 

Day 2 already?!

Yeap, it’s the 2nd day of the year here in Australia already… actually the 2nd day is almost over! I only have 5 more days to start and complete my very first polymer clay piece for my yearly challenge!! And I’m not even sure what I’m going to do yet. I may need to begin working on that tomorrow.

Today I spent time working on planning my 2016 with Susannah Conway’s Unravelling the Year Ahead. If you want some help with releasing last year and moving in to this year with some clarity and purpose head on over to her page and download the free pdf! It’s well worth it in my opinion. It felt really good to sit here most of the day answering the questions, picking tarot cards, and sorting out my desires for the year. No resolutions for me, no goals for me. Just desires for things I’d love to see happen. The pdf gives you this fluidity and ability to go with the flow which I love. Just as life has this inevitable way of changing, so do your intentions and desires. This way, I won’t feel bad for not accomplishing my goals or resolutions. It feels better this way!

I also started my Birthing Ourselves Into Being course for the year. I’m really excited about this one too as it speaks to me on a deeply spiritual level. The first chapter that we work on this month is all about our birth story. Writing it, owning it, seeing how it shaped us, then rewriting it in a way you wish it had been and transcending what is to what can be. You can find out more here.

Funnily enough with all my planning and ideas, I didn’t end up putting in there that I’d like to blog more regularly, which is something I’d really love to do. I want to blog at least once a week about the polyclay project I’ve completed. I’d love to blog once a month about BOiB. Perhaps also blog about the jewellery making and then of course is my Uni course! Yeap, I’m going to Uni this year! 40 years old and I’m finally going to University. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’m the first one along my particular genetic branch to go to Uni! Go me! I’ll be studying Art therapy which I’m hoping to bring to those who need it online as well as in person. We’ll see how we go. Those are plans for another year 🙂

As the clock ticks inevitably toward midnight and toward the 3rd day of January 2016 I really must get myself to bed. I have 2 face painting gigs tomorrow. My regular tavern gig for the lunchtime rush between 12 and 2, then I’m going to help a bunch of other painters paint up the fans of Brisbane Heat tomorrow at the Gabba. Being an Aussie you would think I’d be all in to sport and stuff.. but I’m not. Apparently Brisbane Heat is a cricket team. Their colours are teal and white. They logo a flame. So I’ll be painting a lot of teal flames tomorrow night!

If you are one of the few people to have read my blog, thank you 🙂 Hopefully I will bring you interesting content throughout the year. If not, at least this will be a space for me to share my authentic self. Much love.