I am having so much fun. Please let me repeat myself for emphasis. Fun. This is fun, people! One day I will figure out how to make an entire, substantial, living doing this. Playing in clay. Then turning the results into artisan jewelry. For now I'll just do it on the side, and be satisfied.
Thought I'd make a couple of shots of what's been going on here today since I last wrote. So many of the clay pieces have far to go - I stopped mid-way through most of them to just get them under plastic for very slow drying and move on to the next idea waiting, while it was fresh in my mind. My process today has been very different than usual. Usually I create a single piece and finish it almost entirely, before moving along to the next. Not so much this time. But of course you have to be flexible enough to go with the flow when your creative muse tells you to try it differently this time, right?
Now for the part where following my inclination goes too far. (Time to get that Adderall prescription filled, no doubt.) Not only did I shoot a corner of the workspace, I've added tidy little numbers and will now proceed to tell you what all this stuff is. 'Cause no doubt 4 people in the whole world, including my parents, actually care. And I care about you and want you to get a bang for your blog-reading buck:
- A pile o' stained rags, never used for anything except for working with clay.
- A little kit of metal cutters for making mostly-perfect circles. Purchased at a cooking store, but awfully handy for cutting clay, as well as food!
- A bowl of water, although what's the point I cannot tell you, since today I'm working on a kitchen counter beside the sink. But it holds a sponge which comes in really handy, and today instsead of cleaning my hands in the bowl of water, I'm dipping in a paint brush for smoothing rough areas and adding moisture to the occasional dry spot.
- A piece of canvas on which I've rolled out clay today and also just generally cut clay. It leaves some pretty serious marks on the clay but today this appeals to me a great deal. Clay sticks to plastic in a way it doesn't stick to cloth. Although I sometimes quite like the smoothness left by plastic, today I grew weary with impatience and used canvas.
- A needle tool. For making freehand cuts in clay. And poking holes, if I need to poke holes. And so far, because it's been a very good day, not for poking myself so hard I bleed. Although it happens if you get sloppy and don't pay close attention to what you're doing.
- The happiest little plate of stamps you ever did see. I made all of this particular selection of stamps using polymer clay because stamps I made years ago out of actual real clay took so long to complete, what with the need to fire them in a kiln, and all. These polymer stamps can be baked in a kitchen oven for about 15 minutes and, voila! you have near-immediate gratifcation. Texture is a very, very big part of my designs and so I keep making more and more stamps.
And throwin' some away, too. Like today. I had this big, bright idea last week of making some reallly erratic textures by wadding up a ball of aluminum foil and imprinting some polymer with that. But guess what? It's ugly. Plus if I need a jumbled, erratic looking mess, all I have to do is do what I usually try not to do with my good stamps, and that's overuse them in a specific area. So I just threw those, plus a few more, away today. It's easier to throw away substandard things when time's passed and you have lots of fresh, new options to work with.
- "Ribs" for smoothing clay. Very handy for those pieces with too much canvas texture that I wanted not to have the imprint of canvas.
- A glass with water and fresh rosemary chock-full of roots that had to come out of the window when I closed the binds after it grew too hot to work with the sun beating in. Which makes me both happy and also filled with angst that I still haven't taken the time to plant them in a pot with soil. And also because they remind me of the basil plant on the back porch which I don't think I watered yesterday or the day before, which means it very well may be dead. (A more than slightly familiar sight in my forgetful little world. Sigh.) But which I'm going to check on right now, as soon as I save this post.
Now you know. Better get back to finishing these pendants. Tomorrow won't give me the luxury of working, uninterrupted, for hours on end. I'm due back in the office starting bright and early and need to have every one of these completed before I leave home.