As I wrote a couple of weeks ago, I decided to participate in some of the monthly jewelry/art bead challenges - I added one requirement for myself, that the main beads/pendants/etc. have to be made by me. This is mainly to jump start my ceramic work and get me thinking in different ways than I've become used to!
If you love art beads and jewelry made with them and haven't yet discovered Art Bead Scene Studio, quickly check them out. Whether you make jewelry, collect beads, or just like to look at gorgeous pictures, you'll love them! They have a challenge each month based on an artwork and this month's was to create jewelry and/or art beads inspired by Eugene Seguy's print Insects, inspired by the styles of art nouveau and art deco.
I loved these so much I had to make a necklace using the Queen Anne's Lace butterfly wing and the glazed bead.
The final challenge of the month was another one to create jewelry using sunflowers for the September Honey Do List. This time I went in a more traditional direction and created a spacer which I then glazed in the Majolica tradition. This is generally thought to have started in 15th century Italy and involves painting terracotta clay with a white tin glaze and then decorating over it with pigments. I use a matte white that's non-toxic and paint over with underglazes and stains. Traditionally, the back is left unfinished or is burnished to show the terra cotta, but that doesn't wear well, so I cover mine with a clear glaze. These are the spacers I created ...
... and this is the bracelet I designed using one of them. I used a little leaf accent bead, jadeite beads, and silk sari ribbon.
I just have to add a bit to my post about doing these challenges. They seem to be working at getting my creative processes jump started! After a walk in the forest and focusing on the forest floor, I came back and made a few more pieces that are inspired by nature but are not as much in realism as I have been working.
I've updated the shop to add the art nouveau inspired pendants/bead sets and a few sunflower spacers. I'm currently working on more forest floor pieces and have put up the ones I have finished so far!
Happy Creating! Deborah