Thursday, February 28, 2013

Keeping Your Rollers Warm

I got a great tip from Carolyn at a Horizons this year. She warms up the rollers on her pasta machine with a microwaveable heating pad. This keeps the clay from cooling off to much and loosing its plasticity. I had not thought of the idea of warming up the rollers. Since the temperature of my studio even after the heated running for a couple of hours is about 58 degrees Fahrenheit, or about 15 degrees Celsius, the clay can cool down rather quickly as soon as it is out of my hands.

Since I don't have a microwaveable heating pad handy I have thought of a could of other ways to warm up my rollers. the simplest is to put my desk lamp ( a rather warm halogen bulb ) right over the rollers when I am not working. Another ideas is to fill a plastic bottle with hot water and lay in on the rollers between rounds.

So I still love my studio with it's high ceiling but I guess the chill is the price that I have to pay. Hopefully these roller warming ideas will work for me and others.

My pasta machine sporting a stylish plastic peanut butter jar full of hot water. All toasty warm though the room is cold.   

Monday, February 25, 2013

A Bit of a Romance with a Dragon

On Friday I got a large inexpensive bead from Bead Freaks. I had gone into show Kayla, the owner of the shop, some Buddha beads that I made earlier in the week. Kayla liked my beads and I came away with a couple more beads to try out. The result is shown here.

A.) This is a push mold made with Sculpy Ultralite. I find this is soft enough that I can push the original bead in without to much pressure. I use cornstarch as a release agent having first painted a thin coat of Armoural onto the mold. I let the Armoral dry before I use the mold.

B.) The original bead is about 4.5cm (1 3/4 inches) across and over a 1/4 inches thick (7 mm).

C.) This is the resulting inro. 

I just realized that I have placed the dragon on the inro upside down. That is the sort of thing that happens with a mark one, especial if you are rushing to fir a little trial work in with other less interesting work.

My molds are of the most primitive. I welcome other suggestions or molding products that have worked well for you.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Major Bumble Bee Dance

Opening night - photo by Gera Scott Chandler
 When I check my email this morning, I discovered that Polymer Clay Daily has features our Chameleon Show. Cynthia Tinapple always has her hand on the pulse of what is happening in the world of polymer clay and I was delighted to see the artists of this show given recognition. Loves to see my fish swimming across the screen too.
North Shore News also recognized our show and ran this picture on Veronica Jeong with her whimsical alphabet.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Original Antiquities

My Friend Kayla at BeadFreaks gave me a couple of glass beads to make molds from. BeadFreaks is simply the most interesting bead store in Vancouver. I has wonderful stuff that you will not find anywhere else because Kayla goes to the source to buy beads directly from the makers.

The beads she gave me are not that remarkable but they had potential. The antiqued white beads that I made really do look older that the originals.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

In Youthful Hands

Yesterday’s class at Seymour Gallery was great fun. My only regret it that I could not take pictures of the enthusiastic you artists faces. I have spent enough time in the past trying to get photo releases to try another approach.

As all artist and craftsmen know that you can show joy with your hands as well as with your face. These grade twos and threes had and cheerful and creative visit to the Chameleon Show. Most of them had never used polymer clay before.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Over the Horizons

Well that was it for Horizons 2013. It will not be long until the guild will be thinking up what will happen in Horizons 2015.

Right now I am concentrating on getting things together for a couple of classes at Seymour Art Gallery. We have two groups of children, grade two and grade three at the gallery for a quick introduction to polymer.  I am really interested in what the kids have to say about the Chameleon Show there.

1.) Olga's bunnies and babies
2.) Veronica's treasure chest
3.) Jem teach all to die form.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Images from Horizons 2013


1.. A rare sunny day in Vancouver from the hotel parking lot.
2. The "PolyTrolly" going to Chameleon in North Vancouver.
3. Concentrating on Carolyn Joy Good's class in the hotel "studio".

Thursday, February 14, 2013

On the Horizon

Tomorrow is the first day of Horizon's. I am still not ready. Things are scatter about the living room and the studio. I do not know if I will be able to post from Horizon's so there might not be anything said until Monday... I might be having to much fun.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Getting Ready for Horizons

I remember my mother liking the expression "the hurrier I go, the behinder I get." Well that very well suits my situation. Horizons polymer clay retreat starts on Friday and I am trying to finish up my bits before it starts. One thing I put together is a special stamp collection that will be available to those attending the retreat. I spent the day packaging and trimming and I would still be doing it but I ran out of bags.

It is going to be great getting together this weekend. I need to have a chance to see others working.


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

How it Started

Jem's bowls and leaves
About seven years ago I met Jem at a bead show in the Fraser Valley. She had the idea of starting a group for polymer clay artist and hobbyists. I said I was not getting involved in organizing a group but I would help out a little if she wanted to start one.

Well that idea went onto the back burner for a while but then Jem told me about Ravendale and I decided to go too. After that great week of claying, I was ready to help - that was the beginning of the Vancouver Polymer Clay Guild. Jem and the VanIsle Polymer Clay Group leading the way and me reluctantly tagging along ....

Monday, February 11, 2013

Hatching a New Chameleon

A sneak peek at my new Chameleon stamp.
Yesterday was the official opening of the Chameleon show. It was well attended and a lot of fun, but by the time I got home I just wanted to put my feet up, so no blog post.

I have time to do something different now that the Chameleon show is safely installed and will be at Seymour Gallery until March 2nd. This Friday will be the first day of Horizons, our guild's biannual retreat. In honour of the Chameleon Show I have created a new stamp that will be available on Etsy next week.

Before I can do anything else I have to get somethings ready to jury for a Vancouver market. It is at the same time as the retreat so a friend will take my things in to be judged. Good to have friends who can help out in a pinch.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Me at Chameleon

And here I am at Chameleon with Olga's lovely Red Bird in the background.  Chameleon will be at the Seymour Gallery for the rest of February.

Now I have a little time to do other things, like pick up a new stamp and get ready for Horizons.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Ta Ta!

For more views go to Chameleon

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Another Peek

Rarely do I long for a wide angle lens, but this is one of those time. Better pictures will be taken. Better come and see. I am really pleased.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Poised to Start

the best of the bunny family
Tomorrow will be the first day that the Chameleon Show in North Vancouver will be open to the public. The show will continue until the March the 2nd. There will be an opening event on Sunday the 10th between 2 and 4. Come and see what polymer clay can do.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Sneak Peek Mark Two

The Chameleon Show is almost up but it is back tomorrow to finish up. So today it is just another sneak peek.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

I Had No Idea

You can't even see the glass cubes in the background!
Well I guess I had some idea of how much time went into having a show at a gallery. I have done it before but the Chameleon Show is different. It has been my baby since conception years ago when I started pitching to galleries to get a space. I didn't want to try the private galleries that charge the artists because this is not about sales, besides not many artist have money to spare. Polymer clay has been on the rise as an art medium, but there are still people who say things like - " My kids used to play with that. It's like play dough isn't it?" Well I guess it is but only in the same way the food dye is related to acrylic paint. But I digress....

Tomorrow morning I will be packing my car with the work of six feature artists and juried work from the Vancouver Polymer Clay Guild. Today I was in the studio getting used to putting glass cubes together.

I have new respect for what goes into a show, and this is just a little one. Little but hopefully good.
to be continued tomorrow.