Circling Back

veronica jeong 350x339 - Circling BackOver the next several weeks I will be all over the place–traveling, teaching, entertaining foreign (polymer) dignitaries, readying the family home for sale, and making the final move for the business at the end of it all, I needed to pull a few things off my plate during this period. Not doing the blog was an option but I didn’t want to leave you without your regular creative shot in the arm so I am, instead, scheduling out a series of posts that were originally on my Facebook page back before the blog was born. That is actually where the blog started but most of you will never have seen them so I thought this was a good opportunity to share some of the most popular posts from back then while I take care of things in my present day world.

But quickly, before we get to the piece of the day, I wanted to let you all know that all new issues of The Polymer Arts, the Fall 2017–Texture issue, have been emailed and snail mailed out to all the subscribers and pre-order purchasers who had orders in prior to yesterday. If you didn’t get your subscription renewed or want to order the copy of this issue,  search Facebook or Instagram or other social media to see all the comments on how much great stuff is in this issue–you can do so on our website now. If you expected a digital copy but didn’t see it in your inbox, check your spam/junk mail folder and if it is still not there, write us at connect(at) and we’ll help you get your copy. Print subscription copies may take up to another three weeks to get to you depending on where you live.

Okay, onto the pretties. Here was my post from February 28, 2012:

Sometimes you just want something simple … here is a black & white pendant from Veronica Jeong. Eliminating color forces the artist to focus on form and texture and can result in wonderful things. Find more of her work on Flickr


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Monochrome Mokume

rebecca geoffery mokume monoI always hesitate to post pieces with little or no color, as they just don’t get that immediate attention that really colorful work does. But, it would be hard not to talk about monochrome, which is another classic color palette that is ideal for mokume. The advantage of monochrome is it’s striking and often graphical nature. As artists, we are forced to look at value, form, line, etc. instead of leaning on color. Now, I know lots of  color is one of the fun advantages to creating mokume, but monochrome is a little bit of a challenge and one that can result in amazing pieces.

This pendant by Rebecca Geoffery is just one such example. The fact that she worked with a very controlled approach to line and value works so well for a piece that can’t lean on the impact of color at all. Sure, this could have been done in a really striking set of colors, but I think it might actually have taken away from the beauty of the lines and the repetition. They take front and center in this simple piece, and I think it’s just about perfect as is.

I can’t sign off today without a virtual hug to all my American friends celebrating Thanksgiving today. This is the day we should be contemplating the truly wonderful and blessed advantages, people and opportunities in our life. I am most thankful to you, my many readers, who allow me to blather on about things I love and am so passionate about. Thank you for allowing me to have this as part of my daily life! A very Happy Thanksgiving and a big hug to all my friends and readers across the globe!


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Outside Inspiration: White Walls

Of all the elements we work with in polymer, color may seem to be a primary consideration, but in reality, color is one element we can actually do without. Form, balance, rhythm … these elements will always need to be considered no matter what you do. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, eliminating color and working with essential elements is a great exercise in honing your design skills. It also puts  you on a path to creating challenging and often very rewarding work.

Angela Schwer of Dilly Pad doesn’t just practice eliminating color, she primarily works without it. This ceramicist creates wall pieces with form and texture. The collective pieces are not composed for the buyer of her art but are rather sent as a set of individuals pieces that her customers can arrange as they like. Her Etsy page shows several possible arrangements for each set. A random composition on a white wall with these white flower ’tiles’ makes it appear as if the wall is sprouting flora of its own.



If you have an abundance of clay in one particular color and you’re not sure how you’ll use it all up, an exercise in monochrome might be just the thing. You could create a series of objects made from small forms like the petals created here … just form, repeat, and gather them in an organic form for easy yet compelling pieces that themselves can be gathered and arranged on a wall, door, or piece of furniture. Small form arrangements on a vase, book cover, or frame could result in some stunning work, not to mention the possibilities with all forms of jewelry. Released from the color consideration, I bet you’ll find a whole world of possibilities you had not considered before.



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