Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mixing It Up With Mixed Media Jewelry...

Lately I've been nesting amidst an inspiring selection of flea market jewelry finds, vintage chains, blingy costume bits and interesting metallic antique objects. Having collected them for years and years, it was time to make something out of all my goodies. But as a mixed media artist, I couldn't very well just use actual jewelry items in my jewelry... now could I? Well here's a little peek at how I've incorporated my love of... well, everything and more... into my jewelry...

Speaking of nesting... one of my favorite additions to any necklace is a highlighted book page. Here I sandwiched a page between two pieces of mica and added eyelets for strength. Near the top of this photo, you can see a peek of the necklace which is actually strung on an embroidered fabric tieback from a vintage blouse.

For this piece, I repurposed a vintage metal pill box and an old butterfly pin. inside the pillbox, I affixed a vintage photograph of a cute little baby. I added vellum wings by cutting slits at the edge of the baby's sweater, inserting the wings and taping before I glued the photo inside. The words were chosen at random but still in keeping with the "flying" theme. I also added Spanish moss to make it look like the baby is in her own little nest. A string of tiny pearls completes the look.

The butterfly pin actually had white pearl accents, but I painted over them with a glaze of gold acrylic... to tone them down and make them match the necklace better.

Living near the beach, I am constantly inspired by anything from the sea! When I came across a treasure of unique, hand-carved mermaid pendants, I wanted to build some interesting necklaces around them. For this one, I inverted a pair of stone flower beads and hung a selection of coordinating fibers from them... instant jellyfish!

Staying on the shore topic, this fantastic oyster shell hinged "box" was one of my favorite flea market finds. I paired it with a photo bead that features two vintage swimmers and surrounded it with tiny grey pearls. I mimicked that with a trio of larger pearls and dictionary words I put together to read, "the world is my spiritual oyster".

This seamstress-inspired necklace was fashioned around a reproduction tapemeasure fabric. Originally, it was pure white... so I tea-dyed it for an aged appearance. The antique tin was plain... so I spruced that up with a vintage fashion ad, which I aged with Distress Inks.

These are just a few ways I mix age-old papers, photos, fabrics, as well as found and everyday objects into my jewelry. I have so many more ideas swirling around in my head. Now all I have to find... is time!

You can see even more photos of the pieces shown here (and more!) on my YesterdaysTrashArt Etsy shop.

COMING UP NEXT WEEK... A Valentine Giveaway!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

An Open Book...

An open book can describe many facets of my life... I am an open book as far as life experiences go. I have nothing to hide, and will share anything with anyone who would like to know more about me. You might also say that I always have an open book. Somewhere. Of some kind. Usually crafting or self-help (LOL! relates to the whole "experiences" thing). And you could note that I am frequently writing things down or drawing something in some kind of a book. Namely... a journal.

Well, recently I had noticed that I've been all work and no play. Although work is my play... I was only making things that were for other people. Things to be sold. Things I needed to hurry up and get done. All that pressure! Well, some valve must have opened up when I had an extra hour and decided to watch Pam Carriker's free Visual Journaling class by Strathmore.

Because, no sooner did the first video end... I was rummaging around the filing cabinets for photocopies of my own personal artwork to alter. I brought out my largest journal with nice heavy pages... got my scissors, paints and trusty gel medium... and I was on my way. No time to wait for things to dry. Oh, certainly not. I could not stop myself! And then I realized... it was because I was working with a copy. Not an original. If I messed up... I could try again. How freeing that was!

It took me forever to learn (and I continue to remember) that it's okay to make mistakes with the creative process. Now if I could just remember that about myself!

COMING UP NEXT WEEK... Mixed Media Jewelry

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Book Review... Inspired Remnants, Curious Dreams: Mixed Media Projects in Epoxy Clay by Kerin Gale

Kerin Gale is a self-taught mixed media artist who loves to work with all types of resins, clays and metal. In her first-ever publication, she explores the many facets of using epoxy clay as well as creating silicone molds to add texture and make castings of your favorite objects.

The book begins with an elaborate look at how to mix and use multiple types of epoxy clays and mold-making putties. There are no complicated formulas or fancy terms, and with so many tips and tricks... you really can’t make a mistake! You'll learn to adhere, sculpt, mold, duplicate, assemble, faux finish and much more. Kerin really covers everything!

Each of the over 20 projects includes step-by-step photos and detailed instructions for all kinds of items from assemblage to jewelry to home décor items.. and more! Sprinkled throughout the book are additional gallery projects from all your favorite mixed media artists. Something for everyone.

I’ve taken a class with Kerin and the nurturing spirit she embodies really comes through in this book. Her conversational tone and lighthearted humor make you feel like she’s right there with you. And her amazingly clever projects will excite your creativity and spark your imagination. Before you can say, why didn’t I think of that?.... you’ve come up with 3 more projects using the techniques in this book. You just can’t help yourself!

Published by the North Light Books Division of FW Media, this intriguing publication is a whopping 127-page, full color paperback.... Inspired Remnants, Curious Dreams is available now online, at your favorite bookstore, or take advantage of this special offer from Kerin Gale!

Happy creating, everyone!

photos: cover photo provided by FW Media. 
please note: this was not a paid review. I was however, provided a complimentary copy of the book by FW Media for the review.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Guest Artist on BlogTalkRadio This Tuesday!

On January 4th... I'll be the featured Artist on internet radio talk show Ask Kelley and Suzi - with Kelley Clay and Suzi Blu. Among the usual topics of life, love and creative passion, we'll be delving into something very close to my heart...

Risking Everything For Art!

The good, the bad, and the ugly. We'll cover it all. No topic is off limits! So join us for this hour-and-a-half-long chat session!
Tuesday, January 4th
9:00 pm - 10:30 pm EST
Listen online or join the live chat at: (347) 308-8822

EDIT 1-11-11: You can access the show recording here.