Sunday, 29 November 2015

Tiny Elf

It is nearing Christmas season and the creative world especially, have been putting out the festive works , as early as is tough not to be excited by the cute gingerbread houses and other lovely creations.

I have wanted to work more with Cold Porcelain but right now making things on a bigger scale is not very feasible. The disadvantage with a clay that needs to air dry, is that it needs dedicated space for the curing process...right now, my work space, storage, curing space and everything else is one table...which makes it tough for working on things and leaving them at different stages of production, which is the only way to have things to post often enough..

My solution is to make miniatures..which I have been doing already, and they do not take up a lot of space . So I got down to making an elf, in keeping with all the Christmasy vibes ...

I did not give the elf a typical Christmas colour. And I made her in a sitting position so that she can give someone company, on a box or book, or even the edge of a table or countertop. She had lovely bronze hair..and I made her cap separate and did not fix it on her head. The total length is about 1.5 inches.

Guess she could be a writer's, or an artist's elf..since Santa's elves and shoemaker elves are the traditional career choices. It is not easy to walk the untrodden path, but the journey would hold more surprises and make life more interesting... So why not?..


Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Magic Wand...The Making.

When we visited the Universal Studios in Florida, in May, the toughest time I had, was to get my daughter away from Ollivander's shop. The magic wands, were literally flying off the shelves....I admit, the interactive wands were tempting for anyone.
Any wand, magic or otherwise, would not last long in her hands, so I decided to make her one the easy way....with a bead , and a skewer as the base, and Cold Porcelain Clay, crystals and stones to make it special.
It is a regular wooden skewer we use in the kitchen. The bead I chose is a transparent sphere..but you can choose any beads, crystal or semi precious stones, in various shapes. Choosing a bead makes it easier to anchor the bead to the tip,of the skewer

You may have to lightly file the skewer tip a bit..but take care that it does not thin down to become fragile. Another option would be a piece of metal wire..which should be about 14 gauge or thicker. I used just the White Fevicol glue works well on wooden surfaces..but if you are planning to use any other material, maybe a glue gun would be handy.
The next step, is to take a nice round ball of clay about the size of a gooseberry. Push the broad end of the skewer through the centre of the clay ball. Now lay it on a table and apply even pressure with fingers till the ball of clay covers about half of the wand. I did not intend to cover more than half the wand with clay. If you prefer to have the entire wand covered just go ahead and get a bigger ball of clay. If there is excess, just trim it off as it clay reaches near the bead.
Now it is time to decorate the wand. Roll out very thin snakes of clay and stick them on to the bead . It is better to have a design in mind before you start using glue to stick the tendrils on. I also used clay to fix the area joining the skewer and the bead. To hide the other end of the bead hole, roll a tiny ball of clay , and fix a tiny white crystal on it.
At the handle, decorate with hand made leaves, or any other shapes that you would wish to. I took three tiny balls, rolled them into a point at one side. Then pressed the tear drops thus formed, to make them flat. Added the mid vein and the notches on the side with a thin knife, to give the details on the leaves. I also rolled a few more than snake shapes and added matching tendrils just above the leaves, to match those on the bead. Also wound the longest tendril around the skewer.
Once the clay details have been added, keep it for curing. I kept it to dry for about 5 hours. Once dry, it is safe to start colouring.
Now to paint, I chose Fevicryl Metallic colours in Dull Gold, Pink, green and dark pink. For the tendrils covering the bead, I used a base coat of gold then added accents of green. I also used a few stones to decorate the bead.
I started with the gold shade here too, the undersides of the leaves, then about a third of the handle. To give it am ombré effect, I mixed gold and dark ,pink and moving farther to the end, I used just the dark pink to the end of the handle
The sides of the leaves and the tops were painted green. I added a stone each on each leaf. Again, I gave a base coat of gold above the leaves , on the tendrils, highlighted with green. From above the wound vine or tendril, I gave a coat of pink. While between the tendrils is a mix of gold and pink.
Finally, once the paint is dried, you can add varnish, or Ren wax. I used the latter.

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Snippets : Wire Sculpture

Introducing 'Snippets' on Swardaa..this will be a bit of information on history, oft used terms, methods, etc.

Sculpture is the three - dimensional expression of visual art. the term wire sculpture encompasses not just the creation of sculptures, using wire as the predominant medium, but also the forming of jewelry.

Metal wire jewelry, using bronze, copper and other materials, have been around as early as the 2nd Dynasty of Egypt, and the Bronze and Iron at Jess in Europe. The addition of semi-precious stones , beads and gem stones with the wire elevate these to wearable works of art. These are also known as wire-wrap jewelry.

By the 20th century, the medium of wire sculpture was modernised and gained much popularity as an art form by artists like Alexander Calder and Ruth well as quite a few exceptional jewelry artists.
The bracelet in the picture above, was made with the popular method known as Egyptian coil. I used copper wire of 20 gauge for this particular piece. It is a very versatile design that allows one to make a variety of designs by incorporating beads, crystals and other embellishments.
While coiling is a very fun and beautiful technique, wire weaving is yet another way to add more dimension on to your work..Freeform wire sculpting has a charm of it's own..Try it out and enjoy....