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JPicarelloI don’t think I have ever done a week on a specific color but that’s what we are going to do this week and purple is my choice. I don’t know if it is all the purple blooms coming out in this nice Spring weather we are having or just my penchant for it, but I’ve been seeing a lot of beautiful purple pieces popping up on Pinterest in particular. These aren’t all new pieces. It just seems that purple is on more than a few people’s minds.

It is not hard to combine other colors with purple and arrive at a beautiful and majestic combination since purple will pretty much make any palette majestic if it takes center stage. Take this nicely balanced–both in colors and in the way the shapes are hung–necklace by Julie Picarello. The purple does dominate but take a close look at the other colors she has here. Yellow is not surprise since it is purple’s complement but there is also a touch of orange, mauve and magenta. They are subtle blends so none of those stand out but they allow contrast with the purple to allow the darker color a richer feel than it would have on its own.

Julie is, of course, a master at choosing colors for her signature mokume techniques. For inspiring color combinations, take a look at more of her work on her website and Flickr pages, and check out her book, Patterns in Polymer.

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kukly-i-igrushki-ichchi-hranitel-gornyh-pescherWe’ll wrap up the week with this curious creature that is somehow very beautiful, sympathetic, and magical all at the same time.

This is actually a felted figure with a polymer face, and real crystals embedded in its back, created by Genriette of the Secret Jar shop on LiveMaster. Ichchi, the Keeper of the Mountain Caves she calls it which really makes you stop and wonder about the story Genriette had in mind. Luckily, she gives us the story in her listing. Mind you, this is a Google translation so it’s a little odd at points. You have to do a little interpreting of your own but it sparks the imagination nonetheless. :

“The spirit that dwelleth in the snowy mountains. But do not think that he was as cold as the furry giants. It’s not like that at all. The spirit of quiet mountains, as if the wind whisper quiet as the evening for your window, and soft, like feathers. Ichchi afternoon sitting in his cozy cave and snowflakes cut out from the clouds, and the night creeps in the world and looking at the stars. Sometimes he is, as he himself would be a Star. I would have illuminated the way people and pointed the way to the north. Once Spirit became lonely mountains, and he came to our workshop. Looking for a friend. It promises to teach climbing to the most distant peaks.” 

I really like that this artist works in a myriad of craft mediums including cold porcelain, resin, wood, wire, and wax along with felt and polymer as seen here. Obviously her medium does not define her work but rather, she uses whatever is fitting for what she wants to create. This does require building a lot of different skills but an artist with many skills is far less restricted in what they want to make.

Find more of Genriette’s interesting creatures and try to guess their materials before looking at the descriptions in her Livemaster shop or her vk.com pages.

 

Weekly Inspiration Challenge: Create a piece inspired by a creature of your choosing or create a creature from your own imagination. Even if you don’t usually do this kind of thing, creating a creature will provide you with a studio mascot and more company there if you don’t already have some!

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AGarrod animalsI think we’ll stick with inspiring creatures this week. And what creatures are more inspiring to us than those we share our life with? Dogs, cats, birds, fish …we find something in them that we connect with so it’s not surprising that they make their way into our art.

Recently Angela Garrod posted these kindred creatures of hers on Facebook. With a beautifully stylized approach, she captures the look, and even a few good expressions of some of people’s favorite animals, and this while playing with geometric designs. The hand scratched texture keeps the geometric shapes from feeling too stiff and sterile and adds quite a bit to what would otherwise be just simple shapes and lines through which we, somehow, recognize the variety of animals. I don’t know how our brains see that but more so, it is always a wonder how cartoonists and other artists create images with just a few simple lines and shapes and know we’ll see it. The brain is just pretty darn nifty.

Angela has been up to all kinds of cool and curious geometric designs of late. You can see her explorations through her shared photos on Flickr, her Facebook page, and the gallery on her website.

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Nothing like a “Rainbow Coalition” to start the week off and that is what we are fortunate enough to be enjoying today with this enchanting little gather by the ever whimsical Doreen Kassel. The colors of these characters are just so juicy and combined in a most delicious way. Marks were scratched into the surface after painting […]

So let’s finish up this week on dots and spots with one piece which happens to have many, many ways of using the decorative and often dynamic element. Shelley Atwood isn’t shy with her details as demonstrated here. Pin-pricks give way to tiny circles which play in the background behind spots of color and details of […]

Oh, the dot. A dot is not really a shape and it doesn’t define anything for us in the way its closest relation, the singularly dimensional line, does. It is just a point in space or on a surface but it will always grab our attention. It marks a point that we feel drawn to […]

I’m going to use this to both wrap up my jabbering about the Spring issue of The Polymer Arts and as a segue into talking about a design element that seems rarely discussed … the dot. Or spot. Or point on a surface. Whatever you want to refer to it, dots or spots are an […]

I was so excited to have Carol Beal put together an article on lathe turned polymer. She demonstrates what you can do with a fairly inexpensive table top lathe to make intricate but easy polymer beads. But here is the thing that we didn’t have room for … you can make a lot more than […]

One of my personal favorite articles in this issue is the interview of Wiwat Kamolpornjiwit. He has been one of my top jewelry designers since I saw his work some 9 years ago. I don’t think anyone does anything quite like what he does, not in polymer. He really seems to approach his work from […]