Monday, November 30, 2009

Poinsettia tutorial part 1

So it's the day before Thanksgiving and the house is a wreck. What do I do? Clean you say? Hell no! I decide to make a poinsettia cane. Well actually five. Then I decide I'd post it as a tutorial to share. Now you certainly don't have to make all of the shade variations but why make it easy when complicated keeps you away from the housework longer.

So to start with you will need 4 skinner blends that are in four shades of red. (dark, med dark, med light and light) Have each blend go from dark to a lighter shade. To make the different shades start with your basic red. To this add small amounts of black and green to make the darker shades or add white to make lighter shades. Experiment. Don't be afraid of mixing colors. Just add in small increments. Make a bulls eye cane with the lighter in the middle. Roll out a thin sheet of clay in a shade darker than the cane.

poinsettia part 2

Take each cane and reduce and stretch it out until it measures around 9 inches long tapering down on one end. Flatten on side so that a cross section has a tear drop shape. Cut into nine segments that are approximately 1 inch long. Combine to make a half petal shape.

poinsettia part 3

At this point you should have four canes in varying shades of red. Dark, Medium Dark, Medium Light and Light. Reduce each cane to double it's length and cut in half. From these you will combine two halves to make the following combinations.

light/med light

med light/med dark

med dark/ dark

dark/dark (you will have to reduce and cut in half again to make this cane)

light/light (you will have to reduce and cut in half again to make this cane)

On the first three canes which I will call "combo canes" I added a tapered stem matching the color of the veins.

poinsettia part 4

Combine equal amounts of gold and translucent clay. Roll this out on the thinnest setting of your pasta machine. Stretch the sheet out to make it as thin as you can. Wrap each cane with this thin sheet. You can see all the canes that will go into making my Christmas poinsettia pins/pendants. My next post will explain how I used these slices.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Clay Carnival 2009

I am happy to announce that I will be one of the instructors next year in Vegas at Clay Carnival 2010. I was thrilled and honored to be asked by Donna Kato to join them next year. Now I have to come up with something that will fit into a four hour window. Now I know I am known for my face canes but a simplified cane can be taught in a 2 and 1/2 day class but not in four hours. I still think I can come up with something that will show how I go about making my complex canes. I will teach some of the hard lessons I have learned to save others from my mistakes. (Glowing boobs anyone?) Well I have until next year so keep watching my site for more info.

I have posted some pictures of some of the poker chips I exchanged on the final night of Clay Carnival this year. I also posted some pictures of some pendants that I made with my Grecian Urn cane and also my Blue and White cane. I just realized that I made the blue and white cane to put into the library exhibit in Asheville but I am going to miss the meeting on Sat and won't be able to deliver. Oh well..the best laid plans...