Thursday, March 18, 2010

Master Muses Tutorials

I've been remiss (with good reason, but even so) about posting links to my fellow metal clay Master Muses. The last time I wrote about the clasp designs of the two artists who preceded me in the sequence, Anne Mitchell and Barbara Becker Simon. Since then, five more talented Muses have presented designs, two more clasps and three steampunk stenciling projects.

Angela Baduel-Crispin took a focal approach to her version of a keyhole clasp. Elegant and streamlined is her usual style, and this piece follows suit. Techniques covered in the tutorial include engineering a key and slot mechanism, building a bezel setting for a stone, and embedding wire connectors.

Patrik Kusek served up an intricate custom clasp with a hinge catch. As if that weren't enough, he included constructing half-lentils with embedded connectors, making custom textures from found objects, and using keum boo to add a flash of 22K gold.

Ruth Baillie maintained her whimsical point of view, even with a steampunk assignment. After cutting a brass stencil, she used spackling and watch parts to create an imaginary hot air balloon car. Her tutorial includes inspiration about designing in layers, stenciling with thick slip, accommodating shrinkage, piercing and sawing brass stencils, spackling with metal clay slip, and riveting attachments.

Kelly Russell infused her steampunk bead with a luscious dose of color, one of her trademarks. Her tutorial includes expertise in composing with layers, texturing with thick slip and a palette knife, planning for shrinkage, preparing a stencil, sizing sidewalls and posts for perfect beads, and achieving that incredible patina.

This week, Lora Hart unveiled a fabulous articulated pendant based on a periscope. Incorporating steampunk elements, it nevertheless maintains her baroque sensibilities. She reveals the details of building with articulated parts, using polymer clay molds and armatures, texturing with thick slip and a palette knife, planning for shrinkage, using PMC sheet to apply textures, forming simple cold connections, and finishing with a found object.

Go check out the short versions of the tutorials that will be available soon from Whole Lotta Whimsy, and check back next week to see what the Whistle Lady, Donna Penoyer, has dreamed up.