Thursday, December 16, 2010

The key to my designs.....

I promised yesterday I would follow up the State of My Studio post with the inspiration for the new faux wood painted hearts. Really, it was Andrew Thornton on his Thursday giveaway post that got me thinking when he characterized my work this way:

What I love about Cindy's underlining design principle is that she's not afraid to explore new materials and is constantly investigating new ways of doing things.

Andrew's gone to the core of how I approach beadmaking. I'm always working on a new media, a new technique to expand my ability to express a design. Different media lends itself to different techniques and I'm on a constant quest to expand my abilities in all media.

That quest usually finds me buying books. Today, I'm going to share which books have taken up residence on my workbench and are serving as the inspiration for the new faux wood carved painted hearts.

First up is Christi Friesen and her latest book,  Steampunkery.

I'm really taken with idea of hearts, hinges and bezels. It was her steampunk inspired hearts that was exciting to me and I just had to learn how to make them! I bought the book because of the hinged heart on the front. I didn't realize she had a Steampunk Heart free download on her website or a youtube video on how to make a heart.

But you shouldn't get the impression that I'm sorry I bought the book. The book is a jewel of humor and technique - right up my ally. I get to laugh while I'm learning a new media. Steampunkery is full of useful information for the less experienced (like me) and beautiful to look at with a story woven through it.

Christi's design aesthetic is distinctive and quite different from my own. So after playing with a few of the heart projects in the book, I wanted to go off in another direction with the hearts.

The other book occupying my workbench has been there awhile. Back in January, I reviewed Cynthia Thornton's book, Enchanted Adornments for Art Bead Scene. It's been on my workbench ever since.

Wanting to create a heart in a style of my own, Enchanted Adornments was the go to book. I've said how Cynthia's book is full of tips and techniques unique to her style and aesthetic. I love her style but again, it's very different from my own.  It's how she creates that style I'm interested in learning.

Pages 38-39 lie open on my workbench, the section is entitled, "Texturing Clay."  A quote kept going   over and over in my mind:

 "Unique textures will keep your work exciting and completely your own."
Spurred on to make a heart that is completely my own, I made some texture tools.  But sometimes the simplest can be just what you're looking for.

This one looks like an large old nut or seed found in the woods with small natural holes that has been carved into a heart. The texture makes me want to reach out and touch it. As it sits on my workbench, I can't resist picking it up and turning it over in my hands.

Each path to a new bead series is a passage to learning new techniques and exploring another media. It's the key to my designs.


rosebud101 said...

Cindy, I love your new heart! I own both books, also, and I have found that they are great starting places for new ideas! Thanks for sharing!

Cindy said...

Cindy, I *heart* your hearts!!! :-)

Elizabeth said...

So well written and inspiring. Thank you!

Andrew Thornton said...

There are lots of different kinds of artists in this world. Some dive right in, with singular vision and tunnel their way to new work. Others approach design issues from different angles, asking questions and instead of going at it in only one direction, approach it from all sides. I think that what you learn from these different approaches informs and enriches your work. Although the journey is a longer one and more circuitous, I think it's more of an adventure. Good luck on your journey!

Oh and I'm glad that you're finding my sister's book useful. Working on it was an incredible experience. Kind of like playing mad scientist. Not only was it a lot of fun, but I think we both learned a lot by exploring the different materials.

Good luck! You rock!

Cindy Gimbrone said...

Thanks, Mallory, Cindy Elizabeth and Andrew! I'm an intuitive artist, searching and experimenting until I feel the design is right. Philosophers are right when they say that the essence is in the journey as I find it deeply satisfying to explore and refine on my way to a design.


Lacey said...

Okay, this is totally off topic, but I could use some help!! I came across a tutorial a while back that told you how to make beads out of Angel Hair fiber and cannot remember where it was that I saw it. I was wondering if you knew where I might be able to look to find it. If not, I guess I'll keep searching and hopefully I'll find it some other way. I've got a request in with a couple other blogs: A Bead a Day, and The Beading Gem. Hopefully between all of us we'll come across something. Anyway, thank you so much for your time and your wonderful blog.

Cindy Gimbrone said...

Hi Lacey,

Gee I don't know, I did a quick google search and didn't come up with anything. If angel hair is spun glass, I'm not sure you'd want to be messing with it. One of the dangers of lampworking is inhaling the glass dust and glass artists work very hard to make sure they don't inhale it. Your lungs can't expell the glass dust and the long term effects are bad.

I'll stop lecturing on safety now :-) - good luck with your search!