Welcome to Inside the Studio!
Each week one of our contributors gives you a sneak peek into their studio, creative process or inspirations. We ask a related question of our readers and hope you'll leave comments! As an incentive we offer a free prize each week to bribe you to use that keyboard. The following week we choose a random winner.
Congratulations Connie W!
You have won a beautiful lampwork lentil from Ema K.
Please send Ema an email with your information.
Things are kinda betwixt and between at the moment. Since my last ITS post, that shed I showed you, is now inhabited by....
....Bertha! Bertha has a surprisingly big ol' belly. I did my first bisque firing last week. I imagined I had enough to fill her up but I was wrong. I have another bisque firing 'scheduled' so I can fix oxides and underglazes on the pieces from the first firing. Now I'm aware of just how much will fit inside, I'm busily trying to get enough greenware made up to pack out all the space there'll be in this second firing. So, I have a lot of bisque and greenware beads on my hands and I thought I'd share a few here. I've been getting some seasonal, winter-y pieces made.
Igloos - charm/pendant and a bead version
A trio of terracotta robins waiting for their red breasts
Snowy white porcelain birds
A lone penguin.
Which brings me to polar bears. Madeline Bunyan makes the most fabulous teeny lampwork polar bears. I always get some as Christmas appears on the horizon. This gang of five turned up at mine yesterday.
I do love polar bears and these are really are teeny. I've tried making polar bear beads from polymer in the past; the results were always a bit lumpen. Anyway, I thought I'd try making a little ceramic polar bear. I'm not very good at 'little' generally - not as good as I'd like to be, at least (see the quite large penguin above).
I'm fairly pleased with it but there's a chance it'll be a run of one because it took me a fair old while to make it. The ears: argh! It would probably have been easier if I hadn't decided to make it whilst I had the porcelain out. A white earthenware would surely have made things easier. That said, I have been loving the porcelain. Here's a few less winter-y pieces that are waiting to be fired.
I can't stop making lily/seed/pod type forms.
(These are earthenware with one black stoneware sheep.)
And a few more bits and pieces that are in the works...
In other studio business, I had to have a bit of a tidy and a clear out to accommodate my ever growing glaze collection. Accumulating the pile of mess below has been the work of several years.
My poor Hornsea hen, festooned with scraps of wire, ribbon, linen, gem tassels and lord knows what else. There was even a heap of Twizzlers from all my Lima Beads orders - see there, on the left of the picture. Eventually, I managed to sort through it all ( / just sling a load of it in the bin) and get some order in place.
Now I have everything conveniently positioned next to me so I can grab it as I work.
I have also found time to make some jewellery, here and there. Here's just a few pieces.
(blue bear bead - Jo Lucksted)
I think that is everything - which means it's giveaway time! The prize on offer this week is...
The question to answer is: who makes your favourite winter-y / seasonal art beads and what are they? Comment below for the chance to win that $20 of credit!
Bye for now, Claire