Posts Tagged ‘canes’

Lucy 4-3-11

April 4, 2011


This week I have been working on finishing up a commissioned face cane for a local jewelry artist. She asked me if I could make something for her since she did not feel confident enough to produce one in clay herself. She had found this wonderful U Tube video by one of the polymer clay masters.

This is Cynthia Tinapple’s video tutorial on how she makes her face canes. I watched it and loved the idea instantly of course with a couple of twists. I did not feel comfortable making the white plug and adding the details rather I made the details and added the white. For me if I did it the way Cynthia did I would not get smooth even cuts and the cane would come out distorted looking before I even began reducing. I also told my client to give me examples of eyes and noses she liked since I would not copy the face Cynthia had used. Here are the drawings that were sent…..

Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3

Photo 4.

She liked Photo 2 and I began building. I reduced the eye cane that I made last week for this.

Added some lips.

A nose.

Put the components together.

Added a little more white and squeezed just a little to work out any air.

See the dent in her forehead? I dropped it and since the Kato Pearl was too soft (YES I SAID TOO SOFT) I decided to wait a couple of days to reduce. Insert the Tom Petty Song about waiting being the hardest part.

I made a conscious decision to work the cane for at least a half an hour before beginning the reducing process. This was done by just banging the thing from all sides to warm the clay before reducing. This is her after working 35 minutes.

See how her lips are not working out? This happens when using different brands of clay or clay that is the same brand but not the same consistency. I knew at this time that I needed to reduce and prepare myself for the fact that she would not reduce evenly. So I began.

See how her lips do not want to come out and play?

Also check out my cane ends. The pieces with just the eyes and brows are the first cut. Then you will notice a little of the nose showing up, and finally the face with lips.

The client has really enjoyed the process she said it was like giving birth she is the one who named her Lucy and her birthday is today. As an artist I could not ask for anything more. Client is happy and loves her faces and she is having design ideas and let me tell you they are some good ideas! If you would like to see some of her other work it can be found here.

I am excited because I now have some cool face beads to donate to the beads swap which is due May 15th.

Enjoy your clay journey and if you ever need a face cane think of me!

New Books

September 10, 2010

Super boring day at work one day last week and I always get myself into trouble when I have one of those.

I made some great book purchases and some bad jersey purchases.

Super boring day at work one day last week and I always get myself into trouble when I have one of those.

I made some great book purchases and some bad jersey purchases.

Finally I have the book Art & Fear for my personal library. I must tell you all if you do not have this book go and get it cuz it’s a good one.

My Local Library has a program where if it is in one of the adjoining libraries you just request it and when it shows up at the local one they shoot me an e-mail and I go pick it up. I recommend the try before you buy program because you just never know when you will buy a klunker. When I tried it last year I liked it so much that I paid over 4.00 in late fees because I just did not want to take it back. Stupid I know because I could have paid for the thing already but hey we all make bad choices every once in a while.

Other book purchases were Polymer Clay Color Inspirations by Lindy Haunani and Maggie Maggio. I had heard from a lot of people that this was like a workbook in color and have wanted to try it since I spent my summer two years ago mixing colors…..well now is my chance. This one is going to Dallas with me.

I also purchased The Art of Jewelry Polymer Clay and Making Beautiful Beads these were to replace books that someone borrowed and just never gave back.

So that was my good part of the shopping spree.

The jersies I really do not want to talk about except to say that it involved me closing my bankcard and filing dispute papers.

Going to Dallas for some much needed F’s leaving hubby and son at home……..





I will check in with you guys when I get back and I am sure I will have some Dallas musings along with my clay mixing antics.

Enjoy your days and I can not wait to dig into my books and see what comes out of them!

The importance of the right supplies

May 1, 2010

I have a bad cold or allergies not sure which one going to see the doctor tomorrow. I did not have time or energy this week to even think of a blog post so here is my failed attempt at what I thought would be a quick tutorial.

I found the project here….

and thought heck that should be easy to do. I do not have burma cord (or even know exactly what it is) but I could substitute and be creative what could go wrong???

So here are my supplies as I try to replicate it.

Using pony tail holders for burma cord, what looks like the metal things she uses, and the other assorted items. From the looks of that quick cane I am sick do you see how I did not even get the center right? Oh well it will look cool on something.

I started by trying to cut off the end of my metal thing with my Heavy cutters. That did not go well at all I made dings in them.

Those are my good cutters for heavy-duty stuff! Okay so I will try to smoosh the end down and then cover with clay. Got to remember to cut at an angle so it sticks better.

The pony tail holders are too big to fit in my metal thingie. I have some thinner black cord I can use. The thin cord works got it centered now just to make sure it smooshes.

Smooshing did not go well with the metal thingies I have. Hmmmm I guess that is my clue to remember to have the right supplies when I want to try something or else it probably will not work. I am sure trying when I feel better would also be a step in the right direction.

So when was the last time you tried a project and it did not work not because of your abilities but because you did not have the right supplies? I am off to bed with a cup of hot tea and some cough drops very thankful I have the weekend off to get feeling better. I look forward to the tutorial next issue so I can find out where to get the cord, and those metal thingies.

Night all!

Kaliedoscope Experiement

January 3, 2010

Okay so I was goofing around today and decided to do an experiement. Lets make a simple cane with just a few colors and see how many different canes we can get from it by piecing them together in a different way.

So here are the simple colors used.

Okay I added an orangish color to the mix but didnt picture it but you can figure that part out lol.

Now to make the simple cane that all the other combos will evolve from.

Am I proud of this cane? No but it is going to serve its purpose well. Simplicity and since there are not a lot of complex canes used it will be easier to see the formations come together.

I started by just piecing them together then by shaping them either in squares or triangles and then recombining.

Check this out!

And this

What the heck? Now my mind IS racing!


December 14, 2009
So I love to make canes when I say I love I mean I really love it!

One of the recent canes I made was for a unique gift for a friend. She is Palestinian and very proud of it. I am not going to get political here but I wanted to make something she could have to show exactly how proud she is.

So I made her a one of a kind rear view mirror thing a ma jig and she liked it a lot but because of where she lives she was not able to hang it. I made one for myself I liked it so much and I am lucky because I am able to look at mine every day while driving. Of course I can see every corner that was not filled correctly so as to not distort the image when reducing but every artist is hardest on themselves. If there are any that do not do that I do no know who they are! This is not the one that hangs from my mirror its cold and I did not want to go and get it out of the car. This is an extra uglier cane slice ” just to see” it worked!

This is a cane I made that ws inspired by a shirt. I wanted to recreate the intricate design. Here is a link to the shirt on my practice Flickr site.

I also wanted to submit it to Polymer Clay Cafe so I have detailed pictures of this cane being built. If anyone wants me to I could post that one week. I built that baby perfectly maybe a little too much detail but I built that baby good! I am so blessed to have been able to take a class by Lynne Ann Schwarzenberg at about the time I made a terrible cut in the cane while trying to reduce. Lynn Ann and the wonderful hostess Seana graciously offered to reduce the mangled cane to help me. This is what came from their hands! They are the best cane reducers I have ever met.

Okay so its winter and we had our first snow what better way to celebrate then to make your own snowflake?


Here are my snowflakes by number you can search and find mine.





Getting freeken inspired by making your own snowflake!

So where does the snowflake come into play with clay you may ask??

Well while making mine I realized that that stinking snowflake pattern is almost like a triangle for a kaleidoscope. Why don’t you play around and see what a log here or a long plug there will do to your kaleidoscope?

You still have the reducing part to do and I am no help there but while watching Lynn Ann and Seana I have some ideas of how to reduce correctly.

Guess another kaleidoscope is in my near future!


March 6, 2009

This week I do not want to talk about clay ……just show you a picture of a cane.


This week for me is about family and how important it is in each and every one of our lives. My husband has been out of the country for almost 2 months now and I really miss him. I am excited because today he told me he will be home next Sat. He went to be with family for a much needed visit and he was visiting his sister when she had a mild stroke. He was able to be with her to give her love a nd support which honestly the best gift he could have ever given her. Family is so important I want you all to remember that. Love them because in an instant it could be gone.
Children bring a special twist to the whole family. My son now is at an age where he just wants me to give him money and drop him off /pick up from someplace. I miss the days when we could just sit and hug each other on the couch now I am lucky to get him to sit in the same room and watch tv. He would much rather sit in his room alone even if we are watching the same program. Every age has its stage is a quote that stuck in my mind and boy is it true.
So for me the next week is all about family I will be anxiously awaiting my husband’s safe return and trying to finish up a couple of projects . I really miss him snoring in the bed, leaving his socks everywhere, getting in the kitchen and directing me in my cooking, I really miss him.
Love your family!
Call or visit your mom, sister, brother, or best friend. Who knows they may inspire your art!