Impressionist Field of Poppies
Yes, this time its Canework. That's right the PCAGOE ( Polymer Clay Artist Guild of Etsy) challenge this month was to make either a cane or canes or to make something from them. If you aren't familiar with a cane, outside what dapper gentlemen from old Hollywood movies would spin and dance around, it is a term also used in glass making. Take a look here for a more in-depth description and pictures of the glass. Polymer clay artists have found that many other artistic mediums can be duplicated with the clay, it is that versatile and glass cane work is also not only possible but can be made to fool many eyes.
I never really got into making canes, a few years back when trying different techniques with the medium I made a few checkerboard canes, and a leaf cane or two but they never quite came out right and I think I still even have some, or tossed them in my scrap clay pile. I wasn't going to try for this challenge, but then I remembered, it was a challenge and I challenged myself to try again.
I didn't want to try anything I'd seen in books , wanting instead to find this technique for myself. I looked around for inspiration and came across a tutorial by Cynthia Tinapple on youtube where she demonstrated how to do a face cane. I remembered seeing something similar from thousands of years ago, the Romans would make these kinds of canes. Right now you can actually see a set for sale on ebay, going for over $6,000. So I wanted to make a cane like this. Wasn't too sure about how to go about it so just went in with abandon. I think it came out close to the vision I had and like the sketch I had drawn out, but the important thing was I had fun!
I wasn't sure what to do with it when I was done, so I finally decided on a pendant. I had some greens I had mixed left over so I made an impromptu skinner blend with the five greens and made my first blended bead strand from them.
I'd like to keep this first one for myself, but have put it up in my shop to take orders. They won't be exactly like pictured, but that is the beauty of the cane, especially doing the technique I came up with of adding extra elements leftover from making the leaves and poppies to give a 3-D look. I may also offer brooches, and maybe reduce it to make earrings, so this is cool, you get more to play with after all that work to make the cane.
Don't forget, to go and vote at the PCAGOE.com site, because you aren't just voting, you are entering to win some really cool prizes ( and one is by yours truly, the green and copper necklace), so hop on over there and place your vote, I know it won't be easy because they are all so wonderful! Click on poster at right to take you there to vote! Have fun, and hope you win!
It's funny how in a round about way, Cynthia inspired me to make my cane. When I checked out her blog today, Polymer Clay Daily, and read her side column where she posts links to artists she has featured in the past and calls it 'Second Looks', I noticed one titled " A fresh Breath of Spring". There was no name attached, so I clicked, especially since we are getting what has been called a Mega Monday Winter storm ( some have gotten over a foot of snow today), I could use a Breath of spring, my favorite time of year. Imagine my surprise when the link lead here. Thank you Cynthia!