Polymer in Folded Rainbows

Folded polymer seems to be a bit of trend lately. From the popularity of Helen Breil’s folded beads and tutorial to Sonya Girodon’s faux folded paper to the folded look pin sent out as a tease for Dan Cormier’s upcoming book, we’re seeing a lot of polymer getting folded these days so this week, we’ll look at what some other artists are doing with the folded approach.

These earrings are by Hanc of the Fler.cz marketplace. First of all, this is some fantastically done gradient color–the smooth and consistent transitions through so many hues take some patience to create. And that white line down the center is a rather genius addition, giving the ruffled folds added complexity and dimension. Overall, it’s a fairly simple centered design but it’s wonderful how the folded polymer gives the piece tactile texture and movement as well as adding to the vibrant feel of the color by the repetition of the folds.

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This Czech artist, who goes by the name Hanc, loves gardening and flowers, creating magical worlds full of colorful folder polymer clay. There is a lot more like this to be found in this artist’s fler.cz shop so do pop over and take in more variations on this folded approach as well as other inspired and skillfully completed designs.

 

If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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Influencing Polymer in Print

For those of you who may not have heard through our newsletter and postings on Facebook by others involved, next month in Malta, myself,  Marjon Donker and Saskia Veltenaar (From Polymer To Art) and Béa Picq (Polymère & Co) will be conducting a presentation and discussion on polymer art in print–what is available right now and what we as a community might want to see in the future. We would like to make this a chance for you to have your say about what you like, don’t like and want to see more of in books and magazines so we created a survey for that purpose. Not only is it short and fun and will get your voice heard, you can also win one of three magazine packages that will include a $10 gift certificate to anything from The Polymer Arts and a digital magazine issue of your choice from both From Polymer to Art and Polymère & Co.

And yes, if you took the survey through the newsletter, before I heard from the other ladies about wanting to add their magazines to the prize offerings, you will get the whole package if picked.

To help us with this presentation, get yourself heard, and to enter for a chance to win one of 3 magazine packages, click on this link!

If you are unfamiliar with either of the other magazines, they are both complimentary to what we do in The Polymer Arts, focusing more on project tutorials and some basic techniques and information, great for beginning to intermediate artists. From Polymer to Art is in English and Polymere & Co. is in French, but is available in a digital format so you can copy text from it into Google translate to read it.

 

If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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Libby’s Curious Pin

Color, texture, and shape are hallmarks of Libby Mill‘s work, as so beautifully illustrated in this curious beaded pin. Polymer clay allows her to explore the textured and smooth, patterned and plain surfaces. This pin has a very organic feel to it and the elongated shape and beaded texture brings it to life in a fluid, animated way.

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Libby likes to work in polymer clay and sterling silver. See more of her work on her Flickr pages, including lots of bangles, beads, necklaces, earrings, and mixed media pieces, and visit her blog to share in discussions about balancing your creative life with a busy family life.

 

If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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Outside Inspiration: Getting Lost in Glass

Of course the 1000 Beads books has many beads that are not polymer but I would say all the beads, no matter what the material, are inspirational for the polymer artist.

I know I completely fell in love with the beads by glass artist Lisa Atchison whose lampwork reminded me of intricate polymer cane layering, only there are a few additions to the traditional all cane layered bead. Can you see the additional micro beads and crystals she’s added not to mention the filigree like lines laid atop the basic layers? This kind of accenting would be easy enough to add to any polymer bead. Its a great example of how the approach in another medium can be transferred to a polymer approach.

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Do take a look at the many other beautiful pieces by Lisa on her blog. Just the ones in the header are amazing!

 

If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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Leigh’s Depth

Here is another beautiful bead from one of Lark’s 1000 Beads book artists in polymer. Leigh Ross does a wonderful job layering canes and translucents. Notice the depth her approach gives this pendant. It looks like the space goes back farther than the bead is thick! It’s like there is a little miniature world inside this single bead.

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Leigh Ross is probably familiar to many of you. Not only is she the owner of the popular website Polymer Clay Central, she is also a writer, teacher, and silver worker. You can find more of her work and enjoy her projects, lessons, and tutorials on Polymer Clay Central.

 

If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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Peeli’s Intricate Precision

Sometimes I feel like I post a bit much on the polymer embroidery technique but it’s hard not to fall in love with the intricate beauty of the work. Peeli Rohini has a lovely set of polymer embroidered beads right at the start of the gallery of beads in the Lark’s 1000 Beads book. There is such a precise and well thought out patterning in Peeli’s application of this technique. It really looks like intricate needlework.

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Peeli’s work is inspired by the rich and ethnic cultures all over the world and their rich luxurious fabrics. She has a passion and love for polymer clay and a longing to create miniature wearable pieces of art! Check out some of her photos of her work on her Facebook page also.

 

If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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Wiwat and His Hidden Beauties

Wiwat Kamolpornwijit’s work has fascinated me since I first laid eyes on one of his trapped rose necklaces, as I like to call them. A couple new variations on these are in the new  1000 Beads book. I, too, have a fascination with things that are wholly exposed, with caves and crevice, and what is hiding behind the screen, in the box and under the veil. Wiwat’s work presents a lot of these intriguing, partially exposed and trapped elements.

This piece is actually older. I am thinking from around 2007 but you can see that this partly hidden and trapped theme has been an ongoing vein of interest to him.

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As he describes his work, “I hand-form every piece of polymer clay jewelry with no use of commercial molds. I use several techniques including caning, engraving, weaving, layering, and many others for which I don’t have names.”

Wiwat, who originally is from Thailand and currently lives in Virginia, is a Niche Awards winner for 2011 and 2013, and Saul Bell Design Award Finalist for 2011. You can be inspired by more of his work on his website.

 

If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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Lark’s 1000 Beads

Just got my copy of  Lark Craft’s latest in their fantastic photo book series, 1000 Beads. I am always curious, and a bit apprehensive about books that should include plenty of polymer clay because too often there has not been a great representation of our medium among the older and more readily accepted fine craft mediums. But this book is a huge exception. Polymer is found throughout this collection with a rather wide range of talent as well as technique. I would have lost myself for most of the day Saturday when I got it, if I hadn’t been in the midst of office remodeling and in a rush to get things back in workable order. But this morning … wow! A few hours of doing nothing but pouring over this book and looking up the many talented artists was such a fantastic way to start a Monday!

So I thought this week, I’d focus on and congratulate some of the polymer artists that landed their work in this latest Lark book. We only have a week so it will be but a fraction of the artists represented. But let’s look at great beads, and ones not in the book so you have more to look forward to when you get your own copy! (The official publication date is April 1st but it looks like Amazon already has them in stock.)

I was particularly thrilled to see the work of some of my favorite polymer friends including the enthusiastic and dedicated Cara Jane Hayman. She is one of those artists still exploring a wide range of techniques but her focus on refined skill and creating work not directly derivative of the artists she is learning from is inspiring. These beads were created in a Sarah Shriver workshop but they aren’t readily recognized as Shriver-esque. And they are nicely finished with a wide range of visual textures to draw you in.

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Cara Jane hails from Bristol in the UK. Her background as a research scientist led her to explore and test polymer and share her findings on her blog. Cara Jane has written for us at The Polymer Arts as well as From Polymer to Art. This year is looking to be a big year for her as well, starting with demonstrating polymer alongside Donna Kato at the Paperworld show in Germany, her appearance in 1000 Beads and her upcoming role as one of our curators for the first Polymer Arts book publication. (What book, you ask? Just stay tuned and we’ll start posting information about this soon!)

You can also see more of Cara Jane’s art on her website and her Flickr pages.

 

If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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The Line Between Art and Craft

I found this video on the TedEd website (TedTalks educational series of lessons rather than talks)  fascinating. Because being able to deem certain work as art versus craft gives the creator a frame work through which to price and market their work as well as offering a certain status for those deemed artist, there have been many a long debate on this subject. What most people probably don’t realize is that the idea of being an artist rather than just a skilled craftsperson is a relatively new concept for mankind, and in some parts of the world is still not a widely used concept.

This short 5 minute video goes over the history of the concept of art and how we might define craft versus art. I was not surprised at the conclusion but it does very succinctly illustrate the problem with trying to create a black and white definition. (Click on the image to get to the video.)

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If you like this blog, support The Polymer Arts projects with a subscription or issue of The Polymer Arts magazine as well as supporting our advertising partners.

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