Saturday, 24 January 2009
This time I wanted to include a gemstone in the centre that is held in place by the end of the wire. I worked on this over several evenings struggling to get a final piece that I was happy with. I was probably 're-inventing the wheel' (my husband often accuses me of this) but I haven't seen a tutorial that offers this design. Also, it is quite satisfying when you puzzle through your difficulties. Mine were mainly how to make the flower sturdy as well as neat.
I reckon there is a lot of potential in this design and have already made a pendant to match the amethyst earrings and am thinking about pointed petals, more petals, double petals, hammered petals, textured petals ..... Any further suggestions, anyone?
Sunday, 18 January 2009
Wednesday, 14 January 2009
Anyway, to the main point of this post - why are bracelets so hard to photograph? I spent ages this morning placing the bracelet on different surfaces looking for the best angles. It was hard to take a picture of the whole bracelet without either being too far away and losing detail or having part of it out of focus. It also didn't help that it was very grey and misty here and I always take my photos in natural light. However, I did find my new gorilla tripod very useful. This was an excellent Christmas present from my husband and really helps me keep the camera steady as I move around. It has very grippy, bendy legs and is easy to manipulate into lots of different positions. I think these photos are the best I can take in the light that's available but might try again on a brighter day.
Monday, 12 January 2009
I will incorporate these pendants into some necklace designs but at the moment am pondering about gemstone colours and also whether to go simple or more detailed. Also, I haven't drilled a hole in the leaf pendant until I am sure how I am going to use it.
I had a right argument with my husband whether to drill the holes before or after firing. I said 'after' and he said 'before'. I was worried I might crack the pieces if I drilled them before. So, ever trying to compromise, we tried both (the second heart I drilled before firing). I have to admit, I think he was right as, when using my little hand-held drill, it was really hard on the fired pieces and my wrists started aching immediately.
The sun discs turned out quite well and I have put them onto some of my 'loopy hoop' earwires. They remind me of Aztec suns. When I showed them to my seven year old son he said he thought I should put some gemstones on the earrings. Mmm... I think he might be right, maybe carnelian for the fire of the sun. Although I have some great natural turquoise beads that might look quite good. I think I will have a play around with these earrings before I put them up for sale.
The other earrings I made have a circles texture. I love the way burnishing highlights the raised parts and the indented areas stay with the satin finish from the brushing. I'm happy with these earrings as they are and will be listing them on Etsy, eBay and Artfire later today.
Sunday, 11 January 2009
I wanted to try out my new mould making stuff called 'Oyumaru'. It's amazing - little strips of neon coloured plastic-like material that softens in hot water. I made a few moulds from some rubber stamps I had from a while back and was really pleased with the detail. Below are the pieces I made after drying and filing.
After taking this photo, I went on to fire them on my gas hob and when I did my heart went 'pop' (quite literally!). Obviously I hadn't left it to air dry completely. Well, in fact I had tried to speed up the process by putting them in my oven at a low temperature but foolishly hadn't thought that the heart would need more time to dry. The result was the heart had a little volcano shape popping out of it near the bottom. I tried to file it out but it changed the texture pattern. All was not lost, however, as I ended up filing and hammering out all the texture and then re-texturing it with my little pointed hammer. I'm actually quite pleased with the result. I'll post a picture tomorrow.
p.s. I've now made 'heart #2' from the same mould and have sensibily left it to air dry overnight!