Posts Tagged ‘Color Mixing’

Carol Simmons part 1

October 29, 2011

The Carol Simmons 6 day polymer intensive workshop was the second class I attended ever in my life. It is with great fondness that I look at our class picture and will cherish the memories always. Thank you ladies, Carol and Maureen for making my claycation the best possible vacation I could ever have dreamed of having.

It was billed as an intermediate to advanced 6 day polymer intensive workshop. The class description was right on key as I do not think this class was suited for a beginer clayer. In order to obtain good results a general understanding of color, color mixing , basic caning and reducing is required.

Our class was well prepared and we had our clay already sheeted and were able to leach it fully the first day. I will admit that I did not follow the leaching process fully. By the end of the project I may have just grabbed some clay right out of the package and teacher could tell. She politely scolded me for it. I now understand why leaching is such an important part of the cane building process as hindsight is always 20/20.

This is my workstation on the morning of day 2. We began the day by making blends from templates that Carol provided us. Also learned was to look at cane construction in a new way. I soon began to realize that it did not really matter what I did with a cane  as long as the colors were in my scheme in the end it would look great.

I can not tell you how many times Carol would come over to the table and look at a blend or color I was mixing and say add this, or add a strip of that to it and the color would end up being exactly what was needed to fit the picture. My table mate and I called ourselves the remedial table and I am guessing that Carol could sense that my color mixing skills were lacking as this is something that indeed IS a challenge for me. Carol’s sense of color is amazing and she instinctively knows what you need to mix to get that perfect shade or hue to match your picture. You can see her true love of color in her many blog posts that are located here.

http://clsdesigns.wordpress.com/

I was also amazed during her many demos when she would say “let’s see what happens if we do this!”. We would end up with a new cane like when we named Anne’s sperm cane. I really think that showed Carol’s love of clay, teaching, and more importantly learning from experience what can happen when you play with clay.

We worked for several days making blends, colors and canes. We also were able while working to get to know each other on a level that I do not believe I will ever have the opportunity to in a class again in my life. Honestly I just wanted to clay all day long and upon waking in the morning I just wanted to get to the workable as soon as I could to continue with the creative process. It was such a wonderful experience and I am so happy I was able to participate in the class.

Finally it was time to start our layout of our cane to see what we may be lacking in our construction. This for me was a heart wrenching experience. I had one of those fear moments I often speak of here on the blog. I looked at all the canes I had made and just did not know how in the heck I would put them together. I ended up after being paralyzed with fear bribing a classmate to do my layout. I am not naming any names here just admitting my lack of artistic umpah.

I will have the second part of the class post next week along with many pieces I have made with my cane slices. I am out of cane now since I made so many pieces for hubby to take to his family in Lebanon. Good part of it is that I need to make another cane for the ladies at the auctions that help hubby out daily with his job.

The other things to look forward to are the Colorful Ocean Creatures pictures that will be posted soon and Nora Jean Gatine’s workshop here in New England. I am off to enjoy the nor’easter we are experiencing here as it just started snowing yea!

Ugly Cane Makes a Cute Flower

March 13, 2011

Is this my best flower cane? No but I was finally able to sit at the clay table and I will take what I can get lol. Spring is almost here and I felt like making a flower cane. So when I was finally able to sit at my claytable I opened the drawer where I store my conditioned Kato and I found this cane that was a mistake I made while working on a color exercise from the Color Inspirations book by Lindly Haunani and Maggie Maggio.

Instead of making a new flower I decided to use what I had to make a new flower. I have learned in the past that a cane that you may not like by itself takes on new life when combined or reduced in a new way. So I started reducing and combining and came up with this.

Add a little silver fill in and viola you get a sexy flower cane.

Once reduced I was able to make some beads, a new ring ball for my interchangeable ring, and some Pandora style beads.

The only setback was the time it took to put the individual cane slices on the beads. Then I remembered that if I cut them and left them the way they were it was easier to apply on the bead then if I had laid them out on the table.

One of the other things I was surprised at was how little cane waste I had.

Once I have more time to sit and play I really think I will be happy with the decision to move to Kato Clay. I love the way it works and with the clay softener and the food processor it is so easy to condition the clay now. I wish I  would have made this decision a long time ago.

Even though you may not have a lot of time to devote to your art it is so nice to sit down at the clay table and create even if it is using up old canes that you have messed up on. From an ugly cane you can get a beautiful flower if you have the time and patience!

Get up and go clay!

Color Fun

December 4, 2010

 

I must admit I did not realize how important the Whoopla  from Polyform was last week. WHY?

I was still using Premo, and Sculpy for my clay primarily and had not realized the importance of color mixing. I have been considering the move for a long time as you can see in my previous blog posts this is the one where I just broke down and said I was gonna do it NOW!

https://bluedamselflyjewelry.wordpress.com/2010/10/17/omg-kato/

After weeks of putting the decision off I just decided one day to stop being afraid of the move and placed my order. I must tell you the company I ordered from is Clay Alley and if you want super fast service that is the place to go. http://clayalley.com/

I got a shipment of clay and began working on the color inspirations book and began mixing …….

 And while I was mixing it hit me and it hit me big.

If I am going to work with Kato exclusively then what if they tried to take my blue color  away? What colors would I loose? What if I HAD indeed built my business on these custom colors that I could no longer mix because the company decided in their wisdom it did not make good business sense to continue with these colors?

I would be up a creek without a paddle as they say and that is a scary thought. I can only imagine how many in the clay community must have felt. They must have been very shocked when they heard the news, and later when they found out the change from the company relief and happiness would be the words for the day. I am still mixing and having a love hate relationship with the whole thing but it is wonderful to do and it seems like now is the time.

I do not have the proper colors to do the exercise properly but here is my rendition.  The base colors are Magenta, Green and Yellow. To those I mixed  the color you see on top of each row mixed again with rows of white, silver, and black. I kept finding myself dreading the next row to mix as I was doing this by hand. I kept being so surprised at some of the color changes I kept saying wow to myself. I was especially drawn to some of  the plumish colors they look nice and deep, the green that almost looks like a mint green, and the peachish color. I was also surprised to see a green that made me think of olives which I hate.

I am so excited to be able to mix quite a few colors and feel this book is going to give me the confidence to continue to create harmonious pieces. I am so not excited about the mixing that I will be doing for a while if I want to do this exercise the right way once I get some of the missing primaries in. I am really going to try to focus this winter on the book and completing the exercises as I have time. One thing good about mixing colors it is mindless but also inspiring. I can do it anywhere anytime as long as I have the clay with me. This type of mixing all I need is my two hands and I always have them too!

 I do know the next round is waiting for my fingers but I am not sure if I am ready for it wish me luck. Whats on your worktable?

Polymer Clay Whoopla

November 25, 2010

 

The polymer clay community this week has been in an uproar with the announcement from Polyform that they would be introducing some new colors, and discontinuing some others. The main colors to be discontinued are Cobalt Blue, and Zinc Yellow. The company after listening to their customers have decided to keep these two colors and provide the recipes for the discontinued colors.

So what was up with that decision? If you read the announcement, then you have read that they say they were listening to their customers (us) and we wanted these colors. We begged for them and you know us artists if there is something we want and a way to badger someone into producing it for us then we can and we will.

How in the world did they not see the effect the decision of eliminating Cobalt Blue and Zinc Yellow would alter the hard work that many artists have put into building their color palate and recipes. There is no way you can mix these two colors and it is from these and other primaries all colors come from. I think that after the uproar of this week that is one of the things this company will not soon forget.

Remember the basics!

All the new colors seem rather nifty but I wonder how long it will take me to try to figure out a similar mixture. Made the move to Kato finally. I am thinking the best way for me to start is to begin the Color Inspirations book. I need to now learn how to do one of the hardest things an artist can do. Rely on her color mixing skills. It is an art that I need to learn.

It brings me back to a vacation where I mixed a green, let me show you the picture otherwise what I say will never make any sense.

I made the color wheel by mixing green and yellow in equal proportions, ending with 6 shades of green.

I then took each shade of green which is the first green next to each set of two rows on the left of the picture, and mixed the top row with black, and the bottom row with silver in equal proportions ending with a but load of greens.  This is me mixing yellow, green, black, and silver can you imagine if that was one of the colors that was to be discontinued and those were all colors that you could lose forever? The colors do not look that good in this picture I will admit but the silver when mixed made some wonderful pearlish colors.

That is a scary thought and I am glad that it is not going to be. Whew off to start the new color journey with Kato. Focus will be on documenting the color recipes in a clear concise manner that I am able to read if I see them in a year. Another think I learned so far is I like silver mixed with color a lot. Wish me luck.