Category Archives: Polymer Clay
Art Bead Scene ( http://www.artbeadscene.blogspot.com ) offered a wonderful leafy challenge this month. Click on the url to see this month’s challenge.
I used beads from five countries and three continents in my response to the challenge. UK, US, Norway, Czechoslovakia and Ghana. North America, Europe and Africa.
The focal beads were gifted to me by Petra of Scorched Earth (UK) with an order I placed with her. They started out as white porcelain. I painted them with black acrylic, then dry brushed them with interference violet and interference green. I used my embossing gun to cure the paint between colors. I have my embossing gun hanging from my gooseneck lamp so it is always at the ready.
I used two bright purple disks made from my opal polymer clay, one in each earring. One is much thinner than the other. (US)
The grape colored bead is lamp work by Yulia Hollund of Norway, gifted to me with an order of her beads.
I used amethyst beads and Czech beads in both earrings.
The right-hand earring has a green artisan bead from Ghana. The artisan used recycled glass and made the hole with a piece of straw, which burned away in the kiln.
I have been strongly drawn to asymmetrical earrings of late and this challenge gave me the chance to give myself the chance to let loose with asymmetry.
(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.
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
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.
Art Bead Scene ( http://www.artbeadscene.blogspot.com) issued a very bright challenge this month, bursting with oranges and other bright colors. I gently marbled together some golds and oranges to create these earrings, Creamsickle. They are available in my Etsy shop http://www.susandolphindelaney.etsy.com.
Here is the painting we had for a prompt:
Imagine Tomorrow’s World, an environmental poster by Friendensreich Hundertwasser. Did I mention that it was bright?
I also created Ruby Begonia, a pair of earrings with lush, female forms in shades of translucent ruby from the painting. I topped them with genuine raw rubies. You can find Ruby in my shop.
Art Bead Scene has a new challenge: create Art Beads based on the painting. I created two:
Sunshine and Buttercups.
All are available in my Etsy Shop.
A few weeks ago I was fooling around with my opal polymer clay. I’d mixed up batches of different colors and was mixing tiny pieces of colors together. To my delight this color way emerged. I immediately “saw” one of Monet’s paintings of his waterlily pond. I made the opal clay into earrings, pairing them with yellow freshwater pearls. These are available in my shop http://www.susandolphindelaney.etsy.com.
I put together some violet, sapphire and two greens and got Monet’s purple irises. I paired them with large, baroque freshwater pearls. Available in my Etsy shop.
Then I mixed some violet opal bits, a little gold and two greens and came up with an opal clay that reminded me of Monet’s paintings of irises by the pond. I paired those disks with amethysts. Available in my Etsy shop.
I turned to Robert Frost for inspiration, making up earrings in wintery opal tones.
The Woods Are Lovely, Dark and Deep.
My shop also sells wonderful earring components for your own designs. Opal Disks: Monet, Molten Lava, Mystic Roman Glass Opals. “Mineral” Disks. And lush, female figures for earrings or pocket goddesses.