img_6320Three of my pieces are on display at this juried show, including my new green sea turtle.

He’s all spiffed up and mounted on a wooden block that I hand stained to coordinate with his shell.

“Fur, Feathers, Fins”
April 7 to April 30, 2017
Wickford Art Association
Wickford, RI

It’s a wonderful collection of animal themed art and well worth stopping by if you get a chance. One of my favorite shows at the gallery. There were so many pieces I’d love to take home :)

 

img_6264These are some of the awesome baby seals made during my class at the Southern Connecticut Polymer Clay Guild’s Weekend of Clay a couple weeks ago.

Everyone followed roughly the same steps, but you can see the variety of expressions and interpretations. They came out wonderfully.

I’ll be teaching this again in Rhode Island in the fall at the Wickford Art Association. Date to be determined so I’ll post more about it later.

My next class at Wickford will be on June 24th. We’ll be making donut beads and stringing them into necklaces. You can sign up now, and I’ll post more details soon :)


img_6364


 

dragon1If you’re interested in sculpting a dragon, sign up soon! I need to order clay, and I want to make sure I get enough  :)

Sculpt a Dragon
Saturday, April 8, 10 AM – 3 PM

Wickford Art Association
36 Beach Street, Wickford, Rhode Island 02852 Phone: (401) 294-6840

This class is a lot of fun – for me too since I’m always so impressed and inspired by how creative everyone is.

You don’t need to know anything about polymer clay. I’ll show you the basics while we make dragon scales and claws and wings.

I’ll provide reference images for Dragon’s Keep (the one above), if you like to follow step by step directions, but you’re welcome to make whatever you like. We’ll be working in black clay and I’ll show you how to create a gorgeous iridescent effect for the dragon scales, plus some texturing and dry brushing techniques to create realistic looking stone. And for the first time, I’ll include a brief demo on using pan pastels for anyone who wants a more matte look.dragon2

If you’re already into polymer clay and have supplies and tools already, let me know ahead of time. I can send you the materials list so you can waive the $25 materials fee.

To see more dragons from the first version of this class, check out these blog posts:
http://skygrazer.com/journal/archives/1395
http://skygrazer.com/journal/archives/1401
http://skygrazer.com/journal/archives/1431

 

I have a few pieces in a show down by the University of Rhode Island. You can see two of my relief sculptures on display at the CourtHouse Center for the Arts starting tonight – my raven, and The Highlander, a piece which I haven’t exhibited before.

COURTHOUSE CENTER FOR THE ARTS
PRESENTS “ARTISTS OF SOUTH COUNTY”

A month long show featuring art, photography, and more. Come and have tasty bites and enjoy the beautiful art on display as well as meet the artists themselves for a wonderful evening of art.

Local Artists such as Alex Amoruso, Diane Distefano, BethAnn Drainville, Stephen Drainville, Joyce Hoffman, Bradford Sherman, Lauri MacKenzie, Caitlin Osso, George Salter, Christy Sherman, Joanne Wang Orphanides, Michaelle Williamson, Judy Wood, Steve Wood, Matthew Goldman, Paul Murray, Ed Santos, Brian Pernicone, and Eric Lutes.

OPENING RECEPTION – March 2nd – FROM 6:00 TILL 8:30pm

FULL SERVICE BAR & HORS D’OEUVRES
AMPLE PARKING & HANDICAPPED RAMP BEHIND BUILDING

GALLERY HOURS
Tuesday – Friday 10:00 – 4:00
Saturday 10:30 – 12:30

3481 Kingstown Road,
West Kingston, RI 02892

 

30dayCollageI learned a lot of things while making art every day for a month.

One day is both more and less time than I thought. I can do so much more if I use every minute, and don’t procrastinate or worry about what to make and how it’s going to come out, and whether I should do it this way, or that way…

Making a piece a day gets me past the perfection paralysis, and gets my mind and fingers limber again. Just Do It isn’t a half bad mantra ;)

Sometimes I just need to start… I may end up sculpting something ugly or completely different, but just the process of putting clay down gets me headed in the right direction, and I often end up with something really cool.

It also really helps if I have my sculpting area organized, clay pre-conditioned and laid out on the tiles ready to go.

But there were times that I really needed to take a few days or a week and a half including 2 full weekends (the kraken or the sea turtle) and then I felt rushed, or had to whip out a quick experiment for the days in between. I’d like to do this again, but allow myself more time. I’m thinking progress every day, but allowing a week to complete a piece.

For one thing, I have a day job, and you have to go grocery shopping and do laundry eventually ;)

I found I do my best work when I don’t force it. If I take a subject as it comes to me naturally, and don’t try to go too simple or too complicated, or a specific style, it seems to flow better.

There were a couple times where I tried to go cute and almost cartoonish (due to time crunch and trying to hurry) and it simply didn’t work out because it didn’t suit my style or the subject. If it ends up that way naturally, like the flying pig, it’s fine, but even then I ended up adding more detail to the pig than I had planned, and it came out better that way.

I need to make sure that I either finish or scrape things periodically.

I got a lot of satisfaction from finishing work. Especially work that had been hanging around in a “limbo” stage while I thought about it.

And I found out that I had lost a piece I really liked – it was 90% done but I’d put it on top of the oven, out of the way while I thought about how I wanted to finish it. I didn’t realize the top of the oven gets hot enough to partially bake the clay and it cracked all over like a dry mud flat…

So… It was a very good experience and I will do it again. And I’m going to try to apply some of these lessons to my day to day art practice.

 

img_6114So, in case you were wondering, I did not immediately collapse from exhaustion after the 30 day challenge.

But we did fly out the very next day on vacation to St. Thomas – where even when it rains for 10 minutes you end up with a rainbow.

img_6104We spent a lot of time snorkeling, did 4 dives, and got to see sea turtles like this one – both Green and Hawksbills.

I also got to dive with my very first sharks :) A baby bull shark and a couple of reef sharks. None of them were over four feet, and only one checked us out, but it was still awesome – and not scary at all.

We also saw spotted eagle rays (Really cool – I need to sculpt one), regular manta rays, an octopus, barracuda, and lots and lots of cool fish and coral.

We even got underwater flashlights and went out for a couple night snorkels – it was rather weird and disorienting but very cool. We saw giant tarpon fish, spiny lobsters, star fish, and some really interesting arrow crabs that look just like hard shelled spiders.

This week will be mainly catch up and recovery – I still haven’t unpacked the suitcases – but I’ll be back to the clay soon.

And I’m sure some of the ocean creatures will be showing up in my work soon – I got some underwater GoPro video that I can use for sculpting references. :)

 

So, as a wrap-up… This is everything I’ve made this month.

30dayCollage

I think I’ve learned a few things too… And not just about using pan pastels. I want to think about that a bit more and I’ll post some thoughts later.

But all in all, I’m really glad I did it. It was a fun, if occasionally stressful, experience and it got me into a regular rhythm of sculpting and thinking about clay.

 

Since Dave (my husband) implied that I was being a slacker by not doing an actual 30 pieces, here’s piece 30.

6×6″ dragon colored with pan pastels then highlighted with Pearlex mica powders.

So now… I am officially done with the challenge!

I’ll post a wrap up later on but I made it :)

 

Done painting the sea turtle. I used layers built up of Genesis Heat Set Oils.

This is the last day of the challenge, but only piece 29. So…

 

This is what I spent most of the day working on… So here’s a couple more “work in progress” shots.

It’s not painted yet, but it is baked now.

 
Set your Twitter account name in your settings to use the TwitterBar Section.