I was in a thinking and reflecting mode-- taking a new class, visiting with my sister, discussing new directions, doing some new collaborations and trying some new techniques. Actually, my writer's block is more of a “maker's block”-- I have too many ideas and nothing seems to get created! Some of my readers may be rolling their eyes and thinking, “That's a problem?” Well, it is when you can't seem to settle down on one thing and complete it. Too many balls in the air!
One thing I've been working on are beads for a few new collaborations with Cindy Wimmer of Sweetbead Studio. Cindy is so easy and fun to work with and I really respect her design ability and artistic flair. She makes my beads look good! We can't show you the results right now but hint-hint--they will show up in publications in the future. Here are the beads.
Washed Ashore focal bead
Some conversations she and I had while working together resulted in my experimenting with a fun product called micaceous iron oxide, a type of paint known among polymer clay artists as “raku sauce”. It gives a finish to a smooth surface that you would expect from traditional raku, a Japanese technique using a rough clay body that is fired quickly and develops some very interesting metallic glaze effects. So I set out to mimic some of those colors using quirky tube bead shapes, metallic paints and powders. I liked the result so much that I included the tube beads in my Hallowe'en Tribal necklace (see post on Nov. 2) and one I put together this morning, drawing on one of Lorelei Eurto's pieces in Jane Dickerson's book Chain Style for inspiration. There are quite a few fresh and unusual takes on stringing and chain in this new book so I consider my purchase to be money well spent.