Saturday, January 27, 2007

Color Play

Maggie Maggio has had some great tutorials on her website Smashing Color. ( I am a color junkie and have been for years. I have no intention of giving up my addiction. Playing with color feeds some essential part of who I am.

Most of what I know about has come from playing around with fabrics, or painting classes, or just simple trial and error. Five years spent doing custom window treatments helped me expand my color palette beyond what I was naturally drawn to. I had to explore colors I normally did not play with. I learned to see the subtlties of color. All the myriad shades of colors. I learned to look for the undertone in a color. And I learned how to help my clients see these variations so that we could select the best fabrics.

I feel fairly confident in my use of color, but after playing around with her tutorials, I have come away learning even more, and gaining greater insight and confidence. If you love to use color, I highly recommend her tutorials.

I have had mosaics on my mind lately. Specifically micromosaics. I think some links posted by Susan Rose in her blog, Polymer Clay Notes, ( were a part of the reason why. I was fascinated by an artist she profiled who did the most amazing work with thin threads of glass creating intricate mosaics. It got my mind stirring.

I would love to play with micromosaics in polymer at some time, but I just don't have the time right now for that type of fine work. But I wanted to try and translate it into polymer clay in a way that was more manageable. So I started playing with some color blends inspired by Maggie, and then out came my extruder. I started extruding threads of clay, but doing it with stacks of colors from a Skinner Blend. I didn't really know exactly where I was going with all of this. But, some cutting, smushing, and slicing later, I came up with some fun color block patterns which have a slight reminiscence of mosaic. Here are two variations of sheets of clay I created for folding cranes.

I had fun playing with this idea, and I am sure I will revisit it in other forms in the future. Has Maggie's blog inspired you to try something new?

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