So, almost everybody knows that Adult Coloring is quite a thing. Folks have coloring parties. It was/is so popular that Prismacolors had a horrible time keeping stores and websites supplied. I waited 6 months for a few specific colors last year. People fill up Craftsman tool carriers with all of their pens, pencils, crayons, and markers.
I LOVE coloring. I do it at night while watching TV. Sometimes I get so lost in coloring that I look up and it is 2am. I have 2 YHUUUGE notebooks full of finished pages. I created a form to keep track of my pens, pencils, and markers by color family so I can easily pick which color I need.
I use coloring to try out color schemes that I might use in my polymer designs. I see design elements that may show up later in a cane design. I try and justify it as a important part of my art/business. But in reality, I just like coloring. Always have. But what to do with all of these finished pages? One day in a future studio they might be framed and grace the walls. But I don’t have wall space now. And so they sit in page protectors.
Then I had a great idea! Why not make transfers of the images and create some jewelry pieces. Well, it turned into a class for Craftcast.com that was so much fun to develop. The ideas just kept coming.
The class is Creating Polymer Jewelry from your Colored Artwork. It takes you step by step to create transfers from anything that can be printed on a sheet of paper. The BIG secret??? Avery Fabric transfer paper for ink jet printers and Fimo Gel. I’ve tried all the other alternatives and this is what works best for me. You can also do a direct to clay transfer with Avery transfer paper as I did with the green bowl shown above. You just have to remember that they are ‘see through’. So anything that is white in your images will show the color of the clay underneath. And the clay color will affect the colors in the transfer.
I also experimented with some shrink plastic and resin to make jewelry. I had never really played with ‘shrinky dinks’. But I had always been mesmerized when ever I saw the magic that happens when you put a flat piece of film into the oven. However, it always looked ‘cheap’ to me. Once I coated the pieces with doming resin my mind was changed. I used the new white and clear shrink plastic from Silhouette Shrink Plastic and the Grafix Injet Shrink Film. These are some more of my coloring pages that I used. I think that I will be playing with this a bit more in the near future. Watch this space….
The hardest thing I have to do as an artist is coming up with new designs and color ways. I use my Pinterest page to tag all kinds of beautiful things that I see during my hours of surfing the web. A week or so ago someone posted a picture on Facebook of the painted rocks that artist Elspeth McLean creates. She is an Australian artist who is currently living in Canada. The vivid colors and dot designs really spoke to me. I tagged the post knowing that someday that image would be helpful. But it stayed in my mind for days. I went to her website and just sat back and took in the colors and designs. I knew that I just had to do something with what I was seeing.
I picked one image that I really liked a lot. I blended colors to replicate the vividness of her painting. I love blending colors. Figuring out recipes is fun for me. I seem to have a knack for figuring out what colors are needed to create a certain shade. I don’t have any art training but I did work for a catalog company as a merchandiser in my previous life. I had to check the first print runs to make sure colors were true to the actual product. I learned a lot about correcting colors from the people who were in charge of making the necessary changes. I think that has been a great help for me as an artist. But I digress…
…I mixed up all the colors and used my PCE extruder to spit out the snakes of color to be wrapped by black or other colors. (More on that part in a later post.) I had a lot of the chosen colors left over and decided to play with some extruded canes. Some call them Klimt or Retro canes. Almost every clayer does these at some point in their journey with polymer. They are so easy to do and can create canes that look very complex. The key is to make sure there is good contrast in the colors that you select. I wanted to test how arranging the colors in different combinations would effect the outcome.
For the first test I arranged the colors in a rainbow with the pink in the middle. Each color family is separated with black and white layers for heavy contrast. And that’s what I got. Good separation of colors with a nice mix of black and white .
For test number two I doubled up the colors and separated them with black and white again. I thought this line up would give me more tone on tone circles…but it didn’t. Still, I like the result but has a bit more green than I had hoped for.
For test numero tres I decided to get rid of the black and white to see if I could get the tone on tone look of the painted rock. And I did get some of that, but not as much as I hoped. However, that’s OK with me. I like how it looks anyway.
Next challenge is to decide what to make with them…..
Here’s some more links to Elspeth McLean’s wonderful work: http://www.elspethmclean.com/#!gallery/c203e
AND some links to some sites to help with color inspiration: