Saturday, April 28, 2012

Art is Messy: Challenge Behind the Scenes

The theme for our May Challenge is "Artist Inspired" and on May 1 we will have 17 EXCEPTIONAL entries to share with you.  In the meantime you can visit the blogs of a few of our members to read about how they took on this special challenge.

Pollack Inspired
Susan of 11BOLDstreet shares some insights into her technique for her challenge piece.

Waiting for Alice
Marie of YoungCreative shares the early stages of her Alice in Wonderland inspired sculpture.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Something Girly for Mom

Something Girly for Mom
Here are some great Mother's Day gift ideas brought to you by the shops of PCAGOE team. Check them out in this Etsy treasury: Something Girly for Mom. Thanks to Lisa of HiGirls for putting this collection together.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Look what May Challenge voters could win

Public voting opens for our May Challenge on May 1. Here is a sneak peek at the prizes up for grabs for three lucky voters! If you win the drawing YOU GET TO CHOOSE YOUR PRIZE(see below).

Winners will be notified by email and given instructions on how to select and claim a prize.  Before or after you vote, we invite you to visit the shops and start thinking about what you will choose if you win the drawing.  Have fun browsing!

$20 on anything in my shop, must be used within 60 days, no cash remuneration.

$20 gift certificate to be used within 60 days

any item(s) worth up to $20 in my shop (no cash refund on balance); valid for 60 days

Young Creative
any item worth up to $20 in my shop (no cash refund on balance); valid for 60 days

Any one item of your choice up to $20 value; no cash balance

Any one item of your choice up to $20 value; no cash balance; good any time

In stock items under $20, no made to order items

$20 gift certificate (no cash refund on balance); valid for 60 days

$20 Gift Certificate

Gift certificate up to $20 to be used within 60 days of date of announced winner

$20 gift certificate, up to 60 days unless by private arrangement with me

$20 dollar gift certificate to be used within 60 days

$20 gift certificate towards any item good for 60 days

Any one item of your choice up to $20 value; no cash balance.

$25 gift certificate towards total purchase amount, good for 60 days

Small Ideas
Free map pins: cookies and crackers

Elemental Dragons
Custom made dragon (value of 24.99)
Gift certificate of $20 to be used within 60 days of date of announced winner   

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

April Challenge Winners

And the winners of the April Challenge are:

Winners Voted on by PCAGOE Members

1st Place
Lost Goddess Wall Art by Line of PlaySculptLive
2nd Place
Ring Bowl by Berit of ClayImages
3rd Place
Layered Faux Dichroic Pendant Necklace N12-01 by Jan of JanGeisen

Winners Voted on by Non-members

1st Place
Filigree Pendant by Angeli of BeadLadyManila
2nd Place
Ring Bowl by Berit of ClayImages

3rd Place
Layered Faux Dichroic Pendant Necklace N12-01 by Jan of JanGeisen

Drawing Winners

Congrats to Ronda Wounderly, Melody KirkWagner, and Aline Bard!
They get to pick a prize from one of our lovely participating shop owners.

Congratulations to all the winners, and thank you to everyone who voted and supports our challenges each month.
173 votes were cast this month.

Comments left by the voters:
Wonderful content this month - SO difficult to choose!

They are all unique designs..Love them all

I am an Interior designer and love the idea of polymer clay as a material to create interest in a space, which is why I chose the switchplate as my pick! I heard about the contest from one of your members on facebook, The Beadlady :)

This was such a fun challenge because so many of our polymer clay techniques are layered and it was great to see so many different interpretations. I love these challenges.

Wow you know Spring is here with all these lovely colors and techniques. Amazing art work.

Lovely entries! All of the creations are absolutely beautiful!

So hard to choose, but Arrowdaleartstudios tiny house is so awesome!! It looks like a lot of work, but so cute!

So many entries to choose from this month- and they are all great!

I really enjoyed looking at all the artists work. They were all beautiful.

Beautiful work from all of the artists!

Awesome participation from the guild this month on entries... as always tough choice deciding favorites. Great work everyone!

everything is so lovely it was so hard to pick. great job everyone. cant wait to join in on the next challenge. hugs, Kimberly Idalski

All beautiful entries! Can I choose them all?

Who knew you could do so many things in layers?? And we've barely scratched the surface of the possibilities with polymer clay - fantastic medium and wonderful creativity!

Once again, you all have put on a spectacular show. What a difficult decision!!!

Gorgeous designs!

abulous artistic creations from everyone!

Wow, ladies, this was hard to do. All the entries are winners! Great work!

It is always such a treat to your wonderful creations.

I love all the entries and it was very hard to choose my favorite. I got this link on facebook but I don't remember who posted it. Great job everyone. One day I would like to make a polymer clay item.

very interesting work.

such a wonderful diversity of entries, it made it very hard to choose just three. The artists entered are all very talented and have created some amazing pieces.

I love the monthly challenge... please keep it going.

interesting pieces..loved the website

Excellent artwork -- as usual!

This is always such a hard decision for me!! I think everyone did such an amazing job. Love everyone's individual style.

It was hard to choose just one, but the brightly colored necklace by Arlene of Ashpaints kept calling my name. I love all the bright colors and the way she used layers in her mosaics, both in the pendant and the beads. Lovely job.

As the challenge was "layers", that was the feature I looked for. My three choices show this best I think. The choice was more difficult this month though!

i belong to the north texas pcg and heard about you there. all of the work above is unique, exceptional and elegant, in my opinion anyway. thanx for sharing your art....

Fantastic pieces, Love them all and very hard to choose.

The new picture format is wonderful---I can really see the entries! Thank you! Chris

Beautiful pieces!! Good luck to all the entrants!

#2 and # 13 have an energy reminiscent (to me, at least) of Van Gogh. Love em! I love #12, too, being born and bred a New Englander. Maine and NH are my favorite states! There are so many beautiful pieces here, it was hard to know whether to go with beauty, sophistication, workmanship, imagination, or the amount of effort it must have taken to make the piece. In the end, I decided to rely simply on "How much do I want it?" lol

I heard about it from Polymer Arts magazine. Looked neat!

These get prettier in every challenge. The best ideas yet!!

Absolutely wonderful entries. Love the accompanying music!

Everyone's work is absolutely beautiful!!everyone deserves to be #1!!

There was such a variety to choose from this month. Very unique designs. Great job everyone.

Very interesting pieces. be so talented. Good Luck everyone!

I'm not sure that #13, the salt and pepper shakers, was included in the slide show. I watched the show twice to get a closer look at this one but did not see a slide. Thanks!

Keep up the extra-ordinary work. You all give me inspiration. Thank you!

I love this one!! Layers can be in some many different forms and they are displayed here :)

Very difficult to choose again!!! lots of different combinations to make only with layers. And a lot of inspiration, too. Thank you all, artists

Variety is the spice of life and you surely have it here.

They are all lovely pieces - very close competition.

Who knew layering could take so many forms! : ) Creative techniques and use of varied materials.

I love the use of mixed media .

always enjoy seeing everyone's creations.

How does one choose favorites from a selection like this? All are beautiful and skillfully crafted---my three choices came down to the pieces that grabbed my heart, that very personal "wow' factor that is different for every person.

Oh so hard to choose! I'm inspired!

I particularly like The Lost Goddess. It represents well the layers we need to confront in order to be found.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

April Challenge: Layers

Scroll to the bottom of the post to vote for your favorites!

Layers take many forms in polymer work and for our April PCAGOE challenge, we explored lots of layering techniques from mokume gane in which a design is created by manipulated and slicing into the layers, to 3-D designs where the layers are built up from the background, and the sutton slice technique where thin layers of clay are stamped and sliced to reveal the design.

Vote at the bottom of the page and you might win!
Vote April 1-7 and you could win. Three lucky winners will be selected in a drawing of all non-member voters and will be able to choose a prize offered by our member shops sponsoring this month's challenge. See the list of participating sponsors and prizes.  

And the entries are:

View slide show below to see larger photos. 
Entries appear in reverse order. Use mosaic at top for entry numbers.
To vote: scroll to bottom of post.

1. Layered Switch Plate by Marcia of marcympc
This pattern was made from scraps of a mokume gane cane created for PCAGOE's February challenge. Those scraps were then layered with thin sheets of black clay to create a Stroppel cane which was sliced and laid out on white clay to create the design you see here.

2. Pear in Layers by Marie of YoungCreative
This plaque is made from 4 layers of clay: green, purple/black, yellow, and white translucent. I stamped the pear onto the translucent layer and colored it with mica powders. I stamped the image again onto green clay and cut out the leaves which I layered over the original stamped image.

3. Playing with Layers by Lisa of HiGirls
Simple layers of clay stacked and cut into large cubes. Pendant was created with a slice of the stacked clay that has been further altered into a fun pattern and stacked on more layers of clay.

4. Ring Bowl by Berit of ClayImages
This little decorative bowl for your rings was created from polymer clay. I used the mokume gane technique and worked with several layers of different colors of clay to achieve this effect. Notice that the outside has a different pattern than the inside.

5. Silver Spot Cuff Bracelet No. 139 By Susan of 11BOLDstreet
This piece illustrates the theme as physical layers, built up for the main support of the bracelet. The revealed layers from slices of mokume gane serve as the decorative sides. The entire piece is hand sanded and highly polished.

6. Layered Faux Dichroic Pendant Necklace N12-01 by Jan of JanGeisen
This pendant is an assemblage of layers of polymer clay scraps. Some of the scraps are gold foil covered with translucent clay, which I think look like dichroic glass. The pendant is strung with multiple strands (layers?) of glass beads that pick up the colors in the pendant.

7. Brown Petroglyphs Serving Set by Norma of NormasClay
This set was made with the Mokume Gane technique in polymer clay. Thin layers of three colors were stacked, stamped and then shaved to reveal the layers underneath. After baking, the pieces have been sanded and polished which enhances the effect of showing the layers.

In life, women are called upon to wear many personeas, many layers. Sometimes unaware of these demands, we sleep through most it. We become another being than the one we were meant to be unless we "find" ourselves. I created this piece using the layers of the sleeping goddess, the monster-dragon she is called upon to become and the "newspapers" announcing that she has been found, to illustrate the struggles we face while trying to be just who we are, ourselves!

This is made with a layering technique called Mokume Gane. The bracelet is strung on elastic for an easy fit and is hand polished to a shine. The colors remind me of the Native America art that I saw in Alaska.

10. Layered Hair Pin by Jill of jkollmann
This is another variation on my pin design shown in The Polymer Arts magazine, Winter 2011.  It features layers of clay and silver leaf for the base, and layers of hand sculpted applique elements and cane slices for the embellishments.

The title is an obvious (at least to me!) take on Australia's famous Ayers Rock, but the house is truly one of many, many layers. Each of my wee buildings would qualify as I begin with a cardboard form I construct from scrap stuff - often cereal boxes, then I cover that with junk clay and bake. When that cools so that I can handle it, I begin adding doors and windows, then bake again. The next layer is the "siding," in this case, "stone." And finally, comes the "landscaping," or any other finishing touches. Layers - I love 'em!

12. Coastal Maine Scene by Phoebe of happycreations4u
I tried to make a little Maine coast scene. The rocks are made with layers of clay. The entire piece is layered from the blue sky and sparkly blue water to the rocks, trees, sun and seagull. First attempt at
something like this. Hope to try more and get better at it! This piece is just a small 3"square hanging by some fishing line.

13. Magic Swirls Mini Salt & Pepper by Deb of RenGalSA
Another fun experiment! Made from two canes that are variations on Donna Kato's Starry Night Cane, I chopped lots of multi-hued colored leftovers into bits and stacked them together next to each other with bits of black for accent. The resulting block of clay I then used to make various other canes - two of which are used in these fun salt and pepper shakers. The block of clay was put through the pasta machine in different orientations for each of these cane and the results layered into the patterns shown. The swirled rainbow cane was then layered on top of the rainbow zig-zag cane for the final result. 

14. Filigree Pendant by Angeli of BeadLadyManila
This is made of layered cane slices and two layers of filigree. The back is muted purple clay.

15. Layers of Black White and Silver by Beth of CreateMyWorld
This piece has a solid black bottom layer with circle shape cut out negative space, then a layer of window screen with some liquid polymer clay drizzled in some areas of the screen, then a layer of black polymer clay with crackled silver leaf and finally a layer of white polymer clay that has been dyed with fabric.

16.  Spring Fling Shawl Pin  by Linda of NKdesigns
My entry features layers of pearl, blue, teal, white and translucent. Spring is in the air and blues and green abound. Added just a touch of purple for the violets all over the garden. This shawl pin will also be great as an accessory for your hair.

This shawl or scarf pin was made first by hand shaping some scrap clay for the base. I then added a layer of more colorful scrap clay for the background. Lastly I added a layer floral cane slices.

18. Spring Fling Necklace by Elizabeth of clarityofpurplesage
This is the focal to a necklace I am working on...Aluminum sheet base, sanded and covered with glittered black polymer clay.then a layer of mokume gane sheets were added. I then stamped a pattern on top and brushed some pearlescent pink ink over the stamping, adding a dimensional shimmer. The focal is finished off with a melange of springlike flower funk. ~thanks for looking!! :)

19. Pink Posy Layered Necklace by Arlene of Ashpaints
The challenge theme is expressed both in the multicolored pattern on the left side of the pendant and by the leaf and flower canes layered on top. The layered technique on the left and on the beads is a "Stroppel cane" developed by Alice Stroppel as a way to use cane end pieces and other bits and pieces. I used ends from both the leaf and flower canes used in this design in the layered stack so it coordinates beautifully.

Vote Here

Choose your top 3 favorites. The same entry may not be counted more than once. Voting is open to the public the 1-7. Read the expanded rules here.
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