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13576637_10154283234709491_7192967860885552779_oOkay, so this might just be a week of announcements but they are exciting announcements, let me tell you.

During her general assembly presentation at Eurosynergy, Laura Tabakman spoke about her projects, many of which are huge undertakings involving installations of her work and the work of others in anything from organic floor compositions in a gallery to entire bridges yarn bombed by the whole of the local community. So it wasn’t a complete surprise that she has a very ambitious project up her sleeve right now. The difference is that this project can include you!

Laura paired up with the very organized and motivated Emily Squires Levine to work on a project inspired by their time under the aspens in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Living here, I completely get what got their creative juices flowing. I am constantly amazed by the color, variety and just stunning beauty of the mountains here. I honestly have yet to find a place in the world I think is more beautiful than the scenery here. Laura and Emily were similarly impressed and started working out an idea for a large Rocky Mountain forest inspired installation. Later on they got Julie Eakes on board and between the three of them the seeds of the “Into the Forest” project was born. And just hours before Laura’s presentation, the threesome set up a Facebook page to help facilitate what is certainly to be an immense and fascinating project.

So what is “Into the Forest”? The image here is their first assembly based on the project idea and here is their description:

“An international collaboration of polymer artists and enthusiasts inspired by the high altitude aspen groves in the Rocky Mountains, “Into the Forest” is an evolving mixed media international installation organized by collaborating artists Laura Tabakman, Emily Squires Levine and Julie Eakes. Imagine yourself in a forest. On the ground beneath a canopy of branches and leaves, unexpected life exists. Look closely, be amazed at the variety of these organic forms. Be a part of our Forest and help it flourish! Create pieces which will form its life elements. We will combine them into living colonies of varying shapes, colors and sizes. We are looking for 1000s of elements, created by our international polymer community, to inhabit our Forest.”

To get involved, request an invitation to the “Into the Forest” Facebook group. There are already over 150 polymer artists and enthusiasts that have pledged to help. I know I’m excited. Jump over to the Facebook page to get more information and follow the project on Instagram (intotheforest17).

 

Inspirational Challenge of the Day: Here’s a simple one … join the project! Make one element a day or at least every other day, to send off to the project. I started on leaves on the weekend and ideas for lichen and other creeping color. We have until April 4th of 2017 which, making one little simple piece a day means you could have a couple hundred to contribute by April!

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Cover 16P3 med paddingI’ve had this waiting for its final tweaks for nearly a week but, like half the Eurosynergy convention goers, I have been trying to rise up from the flu that knocked so many of us out. But I am now down to maybe 4 naps a day instead of 12 and got this done over the weekend. The flu and the loss of one of my main staff has got me behind so its nose to the grindstone for me now!

Don’t you just love the simple beauty of this neck-piece by Sonya Girodon? She is the featured artist interviewed by polymer pioneer Lindly Haunani for the Color Spotlight section of the Fall issue of The Polymer Arts. As you might know, Maggie Maggio has been the interviewer and conductor of that section of The Polymer Arts for nearly three years but now that her focus is shifting to expanding color education in grade schools, she has passed the torch onto the gracious Lindly. Lindly has taken it up with much gusto and has for you an absolutely entrancing article, highlighting Sonya’s color choices and philosophy.

Of course that is but one reason to be sure you have your copy of the next issue when it comes out at the end of August. Dan Cormier has written an absolute treasure of an article highlighting all the ways you can use scrap for easier, distortion free canes, mokume and other sliced veneer techniques along with other priceless tips and tricks from this master. Tory Hughes will help you access your creativity, Anke Humpert will show you how to make a variety of mandalas for a truly zen art experience, Julie Cleveland has all the basics on bangles for you, and I will reveal the secrets to creating great simplicity in design with exercises included to hone your skills. There is much more but we’ll chat about that later. Enjoy the sneak peek of the cover!

 

Inspirational Challenge of the Day: Challenge your use of color. Find an artist whose work you admire but whose color palette is quite different from what you usually use. Borrow one of their color palettes and integrate it into a piece with your more commonly used techniques and forms. How does the color change the way your work appears? Does working with different colors cause you to create differently as well?

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Like this blog? Lend your support with a purchase of The Polymer Arts magazine and visit our partners:

Shades of Clay  Polymer Clay TV  NEVERknead.com

2Wards Polymer Clay  The Great Create  The Polymer Arts Subscription

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Randy KMitchellI’ve never really understood why the majority of guys don’t like to wear jewelry. There are definitely masculine versions and, maybe I am partial, but I think jewelry is more expressive than a t-shirt or sports jersey to say something about you. I guess just wearing jewelry for a guy says something about that guy. So what does this huge piece say about this guy? It says he’s not shy to start with!

This is Randy, Karen Mitchell’s husband, and he seems to really like wearing the big and bold stuff she makes for him, so it wasn’t too shocking to see him show up on our Gala night in this piece. Karen is one half of AnKara Designs, which she has run with her sister Ann for 25 years now. For Eurosynergy, Ann and Karen had a slew of complex pieces to show off a variety of construction options for their “Polymer Jewelry Construction” presentation (which I didn’t get to see due to other obligations), and I can only assume this was one.

The movement of the swaying chains made for quite a dynamic piece to match Randy’s already dynamic personality. It also occurred to me that swaying chains on a guy says something quite different than it would on a woman. Here, it felt very strong and dominant, like it’s something a warrior would wear, but on a woman it would probably be more reminiscent of dancing and graceful movement. The wearer does make the piece, which is why some work seems to ‘belong’ on some people while it just falls flat on someone else. If I had not seen this on Randy, I never would have thought a guy could pull this off, but Randy sure did!

They posted a lot of their new work used in their presentation on their Facebook page, but you can also follow them and see where they are selling by going to their website.

 

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Like this blog? Lend your support with a purchase of The Polymer Arts magazine and visit our partners:

Shades of Clay  Polymer Clay TV  NEVERknead.com

2Wards Polymer Clay  The Great Create  The Polymer Arts Subscription

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Here is the lovely Rebecca Thickbroom showing off her tribal-esque jewelry at the Eurosynergy gala event last week. She was sitting there signing copies of the Polymer Journeys book when I snapped this photo of her and this bold neck piece. Rebecca’s work, although it has a tribal look, is never quite as one would expect […]

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I can’t tell you how wonderful it was to not only see, live and in person, the latest work by the meticulous Christine Dumont but to see so much of it in one place. You can tell she spends hours getting every element just right, and I can only imagine how many hours she puts into […]

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