Category Archives: Baking
(The Art Bead Scene post is one click down)
Every month Erin Prais-Hintz gives us an amazing design challenge. The challenges have ranged from photos of dragonflies, to short movies and this month: Architecture.
When I saw this building, and the others in the challenge, I knew I had to make earrings with Dinosaur Bone. And not just any Dinosaur Bone, Opalized Dinosaur Bone.
In medical school I learned that the hip bone is “spongy” inside. It is not solid bone but has “trabeculae”, long arches of bone in its spongy core. The arches are virtually identical to the arches architects have used over the centuries to create the supports for cathedrals and for modern buildings like the one above.
If you are a nerd like me, you are going “duh” because the laws of physics apply equally to supporting bone and supporting the roofs of buildings.
Here is an X-ray of a hip bone. The image is reversed, so the bone shows black. Do you see the swooping, curved lines?
Here is a drawing that shows the lines that support the bone:
If you go to http://www.earrings-everyday.blogspot.com and look at all of the photos Erin posted, YOU WILL SEE THESE SAME LINES AND CURVES IN THE LOAD-BEARING WALLS OF EVERY ONE OF THE BUILDINGS in the challenge.
I am in year two of a five year plan to create gorgeous polymer clay opals.
When Erin posted the April Challenge, I had just seen this photo of Opalized Dinosaur Bone and pinned it to my “Opals to Polymerize” Pinterest board.
This fossil is a tiny piece of a dinosaur bone, so you don’t see the swooping lines we’d see if we had an X-ray of the dinosaur’s whole hip bone.
Here are the earrings I made:
I really had fun making these. I created two shades of green opal, two of blue and one of violet. I mixed tiny shreds of these colors into five different color combinations. I wrapped the green ones in Raw Umber Premo and the blue ones in Burnt Umber. If you look closely you can see how this enhanced the natural, organic feel to the piece.
The opal clay sparkles and twinkles just like mineral opal.
I used dyed jade beads as drops below the Opalized Dinosaur Bone. It’s translucency enhances the mineral feel to the earrings.
Here is another shot. The photo finishing to bring up the sparkle of the opal made my hands look a bit blue.
Join me on a trip down memory lane:
This is one of my early pieces, a pendant of Fossilized Dinosaur Bone, in this case the spaces in the spongy bone of the dinosaur filled with the mineral Apatite, Fools’ Gold. This is my interpretation in polymer. I have one of these available to sell. Message me at http://www.susandolphindelaney.etsy.com if you are interested.
This piece, a small pendant, is very dear to me. The green clay is my very first successful batch of opal clay. I’d been playing with a technique which hadn’t worked and I was processing the clay so that I could turn it into Beads of Courage for kids with cancer, and voila, there it was. I had discovered the next step in making beautiful opals from polymer.
This is another pendant, from my second batch of opal clay. I’d seen an amazing fossil: Opalized Snakeskin, in these colors. I had to try to make it.
Thanks for following my journey.
I am so grateful to Erin for creating these challenges. I always enjoy them, but I must say the deep nerdyness involved in this one kept a grin on my face the whole time I worked.
Art Bead Scene offers a painting each month as a prompt to create beads and jewelry.
The painting this month is Self Portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird, painted by Frida Kahlo in 1940.
So many of Kahlo’s paintings focus on her physical suffering as a result of terrible injuries in a bus accident.
Instead of the suffering I chose to focus on Frida as an Artistic Goddess and created beads and then earrings derived from the Jaguar in the painting. I call the beads Eye of the Jaguar Goddess Beads.
I used my emerald Opal polymer clay and layered it with black and translucent black polymer to create the Eye of the Jaguar Goddesses. They shimmer and reflect light like mineral opals. I topped them with a pair of emerald shaped vintage beads collected in Santa Fe, NM. The pale emerald beads sing with the opal clay.
Here are the earrings:
I am so grateful to Art Bead Scene ( http://www.artbeadscene.blogspot.com ) for these monthly challenges. I grow so much as an artist as I respond to the challenges.
Every month, Erin Praise-Hintz of Earrings Everyday issues the challenge to make a pair of earrings based on a prompt.
This month’s prompt was a photo of dew covered damselflies:
The prompt led me to create the earrings above. And helped me solve TWO design challenges that had bedeviled me.
I had two “failed” necklaces on my workbench. Both of them had laid there for a LONG time.
One was made with the large frosty/icy aqua lampwork beads you see in the photo above. They had posed a huge design conundrum because they TURN LAVENDER in natural light (I photographed them in florescent light, above.) I had made and remade necklaces with them, but none was “right”.
I also had some Aqua Aura beads on my bench that had been incorporated into several failed necklaces. Aqua Aura is clear crystal quartz that has been heat treated with 24K gold vapor. The treatment causes it to turn aqua and to acquire an iridescent lavender/golden finish. You can see a small bead of Aqua Aura in each of the earrings above.
Erin’s challenge got me to looking at both sets of beads. Finally the thunderclap came: incorporate them into the same jewelry set, incorporating the lavender/aqua lampwork beads; the Aqua Aura (I had one big bead of it and many tiny round ones; light Azore AB Swarovski crystals; lots of tiny Aquamarine beads (rounds and cubes); a few shades of amethyst Swarovski crystals, and two sizes of Amethyst rounds.
Here is the complete set in florescent light, which is the lighting at my office:
It looks AMAZING at the office!
And here it is if I step outside:
OK, but not spectacular.
So, thanks to Erin’s challenge, I have a wonderful statement necklace, matching earrings and a bracelet for each arm.
Two sets of beads that had driven me crazy trying to find a way to use them have come together in a lovely, useful jewelry set. Thanks, Erin!
If you liked my design, head over to my Etsy shop, to the second page, where you will find several items that COULD have been inspired by Erin’s post.
* Newborn Unicorn Twins – a pair of earring disks made with my Mystic Roman Glass Opals
* Northern Lights; Lighting Up the Tundra and Aurora Australis, three pairs of earring disks inspired by the Northern and Southern Lights.
* Underwater at Puerta Vallarta, gorgeous watery translucent and opal clay goddess earrings with matching gemstone adventurine rondelles.
Here is the url of the challenge where you can see what the other participants made:
The March challenge for Art Bead Scene reminded me of paintings I’d seen of birches at twilight.
I am crazy about birches and have 531 pins of birch trees on my “Birches” board on Pinerest.
Here is the challenge painting:
Edith Carr painted this in 1912 after a six week adventure into rural British Columbia. She called it “Haida Totems”. Birches grow in British Columbia and as far north as Alaska.
My twilight birch beads are inspired by Heather Power’s birch beads, although mine are much, much bigger than hers. I strung them with denim colored button pearls and amethysts.
I also entered the Bead Challenge this month, based on the same photo. Here are Indigo Goddesses.
You can see this month’s challenge at http://www.artbeadscene.blogspot.com/2015/03/march-monthly-challenge.html
A few days ago a woman found my Aurora Australis earring disks on Etsy and wrote to me.
She is a spinner of wool and wanted me to make her a diz* that looked like my earring disks. Many emails ensued and today I made her the diz at the top of this post.
I textured the top of the diz with a mold I’d made from a Malaysian palm and after curing, painted it with iridescent paints and cured it again.
*A diz is a curved disk with small holes in it. It is used to select the longest fibers from a mass of wool fibers, so that they the long fibers can be spun into a strong yarn.
Here is the back of her diz:
The diz is 2 1/2″ across and 1/4″ thick. I left the back very plain so that no paint would rub off on the wool.
I look forward to hearing from her about how it works for her.
Dry Gulch Beads and Jewelry issued a challenge to make something in this palette:
If you’ve been reading this blog long, you know I love a challenge.
I mixed up a translucent silver and three shades of translucent pink from the palette and made the lush, mature, gorgeous female figures for the earrings. I added silver-plated beads, wires and lever backs.
I HAD to photograph the earrings in my ice cream scoop!
Aren’t they beautiful!
They are available in my Etsy shop:
Are you feeling at the end of your rope?
My dear, late friend Fr. Al Durrance used to say this: God can always be found at the end of your rope.
Al had been in the healing ministry for 56 years when he passed last July. He brought me into that ministry in 1994 and I have been privileged to see many miracles because he “got” me that day at the National meeting in Ft. Worth. He waived the “entrance” requirements for the Oder of St. Luke the Physician and inducted me on the spot. I think he knew that I would do all of the required things. I did. In fact, I have taught the course on the healing miracles of Jesus eight times already.
I made these earrings from translucent polymer clay that I kissed gently with silver/granite clay and bronze clay. Only the tiniest bit of each.
I made the silicone molds from a statue of St. Francis of Assisi. The mold for the back is just folds of his habit. See below.
I painted the recesses of the clay ovals with a silver paint and the high points with a gleaming micaceous paint.
They are gorgeous. Below you can see the “back” of one on the left.
They are available in my Etsy shop as a special order. I can do them with hints of silver, pale gold, gold, copper or bronze in the clay. I can put in gray mica or gleaming colorless mica. Or both. I can paint the recesses with silver, gold, copper or bronze. I can paint the high spots with a super thin layer of mica in red, orange, blue, green or violet. I can use wires and lever backs to match the metallic color you have chosen to tint the clay body.
I’d be glad to make a pair for you. I can have them ready to ship within three days.