Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Science fiction art ROCKS!
Art Appreciation 101: The two rules of awesome SF/fantasy art.

maybe you should not judge a book by its cover, but we all know it happens.
This article looks at some FABULOUS SF/fantasy artists including some of my faves Frazetta and Giger, and was tickled to see the Mercy Thompson book cover art in there (BTW these books ROCK!)

There are some more great art related articles, including history stuff, just click around looking at the links (click art)

for info on Syd Mead's concept art for Blade Runner check out this article

image: Syd Mead. Image Taken from the 1978 Paper Tiger Book “Flight of Icarus”.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Kate McKinnon

Kate McKinnon is a metal clay artist. I think she rocks. I love her work.
I was most bummed and sad to learn that as soon as I moved to TN she moved to Pacific Grove (damn I just left there!).
And any trip back to CA was never actually scheduled to include time to take classes.

I have visited her website on and off, and it cracks me up she plays Shawn the Sheep (love him) and Neil Gaiman, and...well similar interests, but she rocks it and I admire.

There is a new metal clay coming out, doing some reading on it, I tripped over her stuff again. And reminded, again, how much I love her work... and I so totally ordered the new book!

And I tripped over a youtube video--click above link-- where she discusses safe crafting with PMC.
She has some great info, and yep a lot of the books don't (really, California banned styrofoam packaging for a reason folks). And honestly I was a it concerned that I may not have been taught the safest studio practices.

Well after watching her quick tips I am really glad I ended up with the trainer I had. Sandra B. was my level 1 and 2 certificate master instructor. She made certain we went for clean working from the beginning. If we had to sand she encouraged wet sanding, or just wet modifications over copious amounts of sanding. We did hollow forms but only wood or cork clay. Not styrofoam ever. I remember she once said, well if you want to with your kiln thats fine, but not around me.

Because we were cranking out quantity those weekends the kiln was in the studio, but it was directly under a fan vented open window--fumes and smoke went up and out directly.

And support material was always kiln fiber blanket, and not that alumina powder crap.

And Ive been lucky when I have taught the class room is too small for class and kiln, so by default the kiln has never been in my work space.

So, yay! Of course I need to continue to work on my personal cleanliness, I get a little too finger coated--but Im always washing them off, since I can't work well with clay fingers.

Skill developing


Art magazines are my inspiration idea this week. Well, maybe not my idea. But to actually use them. I've been "collecting" jewelry how-to magazines mostly as inspiration. I can't say I have ever actually completed a project from one. A few techniques here and there, but not an entire project.

I have decided that I need to do that. Make some of these projects. Even if it is just an exercise in skill development like the scroll slug I made based on the cover earrings from this issue of Art jewelry.

Talk about not satisfactory results. I tried to make 2 at a time for a pair, one of them broke. Aluminum is not a good practice with even if it comes in pretty colors!

Any way last night i tried to follow the directions for a bracelet, had to work out some mental translation issues, as in I did not understand, or instructions were not as clear as they could have been. In any case after one trial false start I made this lovely bracelet based on magazine instructions. I used less wire, and added some beads.

There just might be something to this following magazine directions for learning skills thing....

Sunday, August 8, 2010

she said "surprise me"

she said "surprise me"
Originally uploaded by Zoeowyn
I spent some time this week end working on this set of chunky turquoise.
(no its not real its died, but it looks good.)

last summer my sister purchased the chunks and some other round beads (used). Nothing happened with them while I was in CA. Mom brought them home with her on their spring trip to CA.

I've been working through past projects, and, trying to rejuvenate my work. Im doing more metal clay, and want to go beyond just stringing things together. Thats were the bracelet came from basically.
The bracelet was really a trial run for an idea I have. I want to make some bronze clay bits to incorporate. I also think a color progression might look really cool.

Any way i could not remember the original plans for these rocks, and so I texted her. She said surprise me.

I think this should do.

And that is what I did this week end.

Friday, August 6, 2010


it shrinks!
Originally uploaded by Zoeowyn
I dunno, are people afraid to show work in progress any more?
Its all glam and gloss and finished product.

Yes its wonderful to see finished product, and frankly If you can figure out how to recreate what I made from a few work in progress photos, then Im sure you would have gotten there with out them.
Am I right?

I love my work in progress, heck life is all about work in progress isn't it?

besides if I don't show WIP pictures, I would never get anything posted--I have hours and hours a head of me before I have new product ready for glam shots.

I cant wait!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

bronzclay batch

bronzclay batch
Originally uploaded by Zoeowyn
Here they are, fresh out of the kiln.
the large greek piece in the middle broke, but because of the style all I needed to do was drill another stringing hole.
The bar above that was not as flexible as I had hoped and I snapped it, so instead of a bail for a large rock it will become a pair of earrings.

Im looking forward to finishing these up, and having some new jewelry to show off!!

bronze clay refined and ready to fire

I have been jonesing to play with this for soo long.
I realized its been over a year since I have done any metal clay at all.
These went into the kiln yesterday. I had some mis-fire issues, but those have been happily resolved, and these are on their happy way to sinter-land.
1 more hour at this point of holding at 1550, then cool down time.
I should be able to open the box before bed time.
I already have plans for faux bone beads and turquoise nuggets and....

Too darn hot!

Its too hot to be inspired by anything other than really good air conditioning at the moment.
This is supposed to be one of the worst weeks we have this entire summer, and yet this entire summer has been nothing but record breaking heat.
So its gross hot out, what do I choose to do?
Play with my kiln and figure out why its giving me pF 1 on ramp up when there are no power failures, and its not in cool down mode (which is what this code is supposed to mean).

My thoughts will be with the bomb pops and the AC vents!