12/05/2017

Lab Rat - Scientist Role Reversal Shrink Plastic Earrings


    I told you in my last post that my friend had made a request for some new shrink film pieces and I wanted ot show you what I came up with. She is a scientist and she had this idea for a fellow lab mate as a gift. She liked the role reversal with the alien and cow that she asked me to come up with something similar for a rat and scientist. This is what I drew.





    I told you in my last post that my friend had made a request for some new shrink film pieces and I wanted ot show you what I came up with. She is a scientist and she had this idea for a fellow lab mate as a gift. She liked the role reversal with the alien and cow that she asked me to come up with something similar for a rat and scientist. This is what I drew.

 I then inked them out on the shrink film and colored them in:

 And here is the finished pieces, also some cows and aliens as I had an order for a pair of them as earrings.

 Unfortunatly I forgot to get a picture of the pieces as finished earrings. It was a rush order and I had to mail them quickly. I had a lot of fun making these. It is way outside of my normal work and it is good to do something a little different occasionally.

Hope you are having a great week!









 I then inked them out on the shrink film and colored them in:









 And here is the finished pieces, also some cows and aliens as I had an order for a pair of them as earrings.









 Unfortunatly I forgot to get a picture of the pieces as finished earrings. It was a rush order and I had to mail them quickly. I had a lot of fun making these. It is way outside of my normal work and it is good to do something a little different occasionally.





Hope you are having a great week!






11/29/2017

Alien - Cow Role reversal Shrink Plastic Jewelry

[ JEWELRY ]

ALIEN – COW ROLE REVERSAL SHRINK PLASTIC JEWELRY

 I have this friend, she is a little zany. She has a million ideas and they are all a little different and fun. She has long hair and always wears it up in a bun. She told me one day she would love some fun and silly hair sticks to wear in her hair, like an alien beaming up a cow. I thought it was a fun idea and worked on and off for well over a year with different ideas to make these hair sticks. I tried beads and fimo and wire. Nothing really seemed to catch it and I put it aside for awhile. Then I started working with the shrink plastic and one day *bing* the idea came into my head to make the alien and cow in shrink plastic. Why not?

So I sat down to draw it but realized that the regular alien and cow scenario just wasn’t doing it for me. I needed a twist and that is how the cow abducting the alien came to life!

I inked the pictures onto shrink plastic and came up with this. I then refined it a little, adding some shadows and such. I really love how these came out, they are so fun!

After I was finally satisfied with the piece, I made them into a nice set of hair sticks and gave them to my friend.

She loved them so much she came to me the next week and begged me to make her friend some earrings. I will show you what I made next time 🙂 


11/27/2017

A Serious and All Encompassing Bug


So I caught a bug in October. It wasn’t your usual cold and flu thing, no fever and no cough. No, this was something completely different. I caught the knitting bug!

Not only did I catch it, I caught a very bad case of it. I have wanted to knit since I was a teenager. I have tried many times. Each time ending in disaster. I even got as far as making a scarf my last attempt but it was hard and long and I fought it the entire way. I was left with a wonky, sloppy mess that I still wore till it was wearing out but I was not happy with it.

 I joined a facebook group this last month and I am putting this bug squarely on their shoulders. It is a fiber group and suddenly there on my feed, day after day, were all these wonderful photos of the most beautiful work and a lot of it was knitted.   I started to get that itch again, that deep desire to surround myself with skeins of beautiful wool and knit something beautiful. I decided to try one last time. If it didn’t work this time well then, that was that. Only that wasn’t that. 

   I’m not sure what changed. I really don’t understand what happened but this time I picked up the needles and that big ball of squishy yarn and it came to life under my fingers. Suddenly I was knitting away row after row of beautiful stitches with hardly a wonky one among them. I did it!!!

  I started with a simple scarf, I didn’t know what I was doing but I was happy. About 18 inches into it I noticed it was curling and learned from the experts that I couldnt just knit and purl away like that, it would always curl. So I took my first piece apart and made this instead:

Once I finished my first scarf I went on to more colorful projects.  This is my second scarf and I adore it! It is warm and bright and fun. It has quickly become a favorite that I reach for time and time again.

    Now I was completely hooked. I was spending hours drooling over different patterns and yarns. THen I saw entralac. Oh My Goodness! What magic is this? I had to learn. So I set out to learn this elusive stitch and low and behold, I could do that too! 

     With the skills to do that beautiful stitch I made myself a pillow top. 

I just think it is scrumptious! I love it so much. I am really and truly hooked now. 

Next on my agenda was learning to make a hat, so I found a nice slouchy hat pattern and this happened:

 So you can see, I really am truly hooked on this. No telling what I will make next *grin*


9/14/2017

Steam Punk Fairy Makes an Entrance

  After finishing Pomp & Circumstance I found myself still yearning to pick up my pencils. I was thrilled with this as I have let them lay dormant for many a year with no desire to visit them at all. That I would find such satisfaction with them again was an exciting thing for me. I quickly set about with a new idea. My daughter had told me she wished a drawing of a fairy some day so that is where the idea for this drawing came from. I decided to draw a fairy but not just any fairy, a steampunk fairy. I wanted her to be bold and yet beautiful also. So this is what I started out with. 

I didn’t really like her face yet, I wanted something more angellic. I finally settled on this face and I am much happier with it.

After I settled on the face I went into a little more detail on her hair. She is starting to shape up!

I am really looking forward to this piece. I think she is going to be a lot of fun. Keep posted to see her come to life.

Hope you have a great and creative week!


8/28/2017

Pen & Ink and Colored Pencil Design


This is a post about my recent rediscovery of my love of pencil drawing and the results of my experiments in colored pencil. When I recently did the graphic sketch of the colorful feather I realized just how much I loved drawing and missed doing it. When my son made a comment that he had none of my art to hang on his wall I started mulling over the idea of doing a drawing for him. He has a painting of his father’s on the wall and it is of our old angel fish. Well I love angel fish and I thought, “Wouldn’t it be fun to do a fish also, then he would have one in each of our styles?” So that’s what I decided to do…

 I started out with this peliminary sketch of the fish.

I wanted to do an angel fish but one with lots of swirly very colorful fins. 

After I finished my sketch I inked the body of my fish. 

 Then I began my first layering of color. I have never really done any professional work with colored pencils so I watched a lot of videos on different methods for layering color, etc. I started out with my lightest colors, lay the color down and smoothed it with turpentine. It made a nice painterly effect and I really liked how well it covered this way. 

I then slowly started building up the color. I found this a fascinating process.  I always used only graphite when I worked in pencil when I was younger and I was missing out on a whole world of beautiful colors. The Prismacolor pencils I use are rich and soft and layer beautifully. 

Once the body was done, then the colors really came out. Now I am starting to play! This was such a fun project. I really just let myself go. I found the pencils themselves made me even more creative. The vast amount of color effects I was able to achieve just encouraged me more. I think I spent more time deciding the colors and designs I would use then I did with the actual work but it was all a very fun project!


5/16/2017

Initial D Shrink Film Experiment



I was so happy with my rainbow feather piece that I wanted to try this method out again. I loved how the rainbow feather turned out but I felt it was just a bit too detailed, so I set out to simplify the design. I started out with a sketch of an initial D.

I really loved how this sketch turned out. I didnt add the color or fine details in the sketch. I chose to wait until I put it on the plastic. I made up two pieces of the film and tranferred the design onto them for shrinking. I wanted to do one piece with the sharpie markers and one with the prismacolor to compare the two. I immediately made a mistake by tranferring the design onto the wrong side of one of the pieces. I went ahead and finished it anyway though as I wanted to see how it would look with it done on the wrong side. The piece done on the right side is with the colored pencil, the wrong side is the marker one.

So here below are the first two  pieces. The one on the left is the one done on the wrong side. As you can see the colors are very muted. I guess this could be used in some applications but I felt it wasn’t suitable for this application. The second one I thought turned out great. I was so excited about it that I set out to wrap it right away. Silly me! I totally forgot to seal it before I started and before I was even halfway finished with the bezel the ink had rubbed off the front of the piece. The bezel also didn’t work so two fails in one day! 

So I went on to do two more pieces. I was determined to get this piece right. I again repeated the same experiment, one with marker and one with pencil. This time I inked them both on the right side. This time they both turned out great so I went on to seal them. I decided to use the spray sealer to eliminate the brush stroke that were somewhat evident on the rainbow feather. Boy was that a mistake. I am not sure if it would have worked if I had used a lighter touch but what happend was a reaction with the ink  and the sealer. It leaked into the background.Two more pieces regulated to the scrap pile. One good thing though, I can use these with the resin experiments I want to try out as soon as it gets a bit warmer. It is still way too cold up on this mountain for the resin to cure well without using lots of heat in the room.

I was still determined to do this right. I made one more piece. This time with the pencil as I had decided from the previous batches that the pencil looks just a bit better than the marker. Though really it is a close call. They both look quite good in my opinion. So here is the final piece inked and then shrunk.

Finally a good result!  I am still not crazy about the background and would probably be more likely to use this with images that fill the whole piece. I still have to play with this more. What do you think? Do you like the results? Would you wear something like this? 

5/02/2017

Shrink Film Update


 I have had a busy day here on the mountain. It was cold and snowy up here and not much fun to be outdoors. Thankfully the forecast shows warmer days to come. I am ready for spring!

And speaking of spring, I think my new piece has a bit of a spring feel.After I shrunk this down I really wanted to give it a wrap to showcase those lovely rainbow colors. So I made this wrap with some of my hand dyed rainbow silk ribbon.

 I really do love the color it added but I still think this piece is way too detailed.  I plan on doing things a little more simple in the future to see how the color pops. The black just dominates too much. It was just an experiment though. 

What do you think? Is it too dark or do you think it shows the colors sufficiently?

Since I loved this piece so much I did decide to refine the sketch and worked hard all week to make this new version. I say work but how can it be when I have so much fun doing it?

So here is the new version, refined quite a bit and much larger. I am really out of practice! It has been so long since I did anything with a pencil  that I even took a quick refresher course on shading to get back in the groove. It wasn’t long though before I was shading away happily. I can do this!

This piece will go on my living room wall. I even have a space that has been waiting for that special something. It will fit right in. 

Now I am onto more shrink film experiments, I am not done playing with this medium for sure. I think it has a lot of interesting possibilities and I want to see if any of these crazy ideas in my head work out. I will keep you updated. 

Until then, take care and enjoy the spring weather!





 I have had a busy day here on the mountain. It was cold and snowy up here and not much fun to be outdoors. Thankfully the forecast shows warmer days to come. I am ready for spring!





And speaking of spring, I think my new piece has a bit of a spring feel.After I shrunk this down I really wanted to give it a wrap to showcase those lovely rainbow colors. So I made this wrap with some of my hand dyed rainbow silk ribbon.





 I really do love the color it added but I still think this piece is way too detailed.  I plan on doing things a little more simple in the future to see how the color pops. The black just dominates too much. It was just an experiment though. 





What do you think? Is it too dark or do you think it shows the colors sufficiently?









Since I loved this piece so much I did decide to refine the sketch and worked hard all week to make this new version. I say work but how can it be when I have so much fun doing it?





So here is the new version, refined quite a bit and much larger. I am really out of practice! It has been so long since I did anything with a pencil  that I even took a quick refresher course on shading to get back in the groove. It wasn't long though before I was shading away happily. I can do this!









This piece will go on my living room wall. I even have a space that has been waiting for that special something. It will fit right in. 





Now I am onto more shrink film experiments, I am not done playing with this medium for sure. I think it has a lot of interesting possibilities and I want to see if any of these crazy ideas in my head work out. I will keep you updated. 





Until then, take care and enjoy the spring weather!






4/21/2017

Shrink Film Experiment

  I wrote recently on my experiments with alcohol inks. In my last experiment, I used the inks on shrink film and I was very interested in the results. I looked at the wings I had quickly inked and I suddenly saw an opportunity to use my fine art skills in jewelry. I love making jewelry. It does satisfy something in me but I am constantly trying to find ways to bring my art into my jewelry. The wire is lovely but popping colors? Even better!

So I set about on a trial to see just exactly how much art could I bring to a miniature medium like this. Here are my results and I think you will be quite pleased as I was.

First off, I wanted a nice intricate piece with lots of colors. Feathers have been on my mind a lot so I did a sketch of a feather in pencil. I didn’t take a lot of time on this piece but I ended up loving it. So I will definitely go back and redo this in a larger size and ink it properly. This is definitely a sketch, not a finished piece.

This is the piece I am going to do. This image is only about 4″ tall.

I did a lot of reading on this subject before I started. I wanted to know the pros and cons and to catch the little tips people throw out in forums, etc. I learned that a sanded surface works great for colored pencils. Since I had no colored Sharpies or other alcohol markers, colored pencils it was.

I had already did quite a few test runs on my oven and slowly took the temperature down till I found the good temp. 140c seems to be just about right. 

I did a test with my colored pencils. I have many brands and wanted to see which pencils would work the best. I decided that the Marco pencils seemed to go on much nicer than the others. Later during the coloring of the piece I actually found the Stabilos going on much smoother.

Here is my little color chart I made for reference. 

The brighter side is the unsanded side, as you can see the titles are backwards.

While I was at it I made a ruler too. This is a great little reference tool to give you an idea of how large your piece of plastic needs to be to get the proper size.

As you can see, I still hadn’t figured out my oven temps with this piece and 
the colored pencil templates and they cooked way too fast.
I could probably put it back in the oven and flatten it a bit more if I wanted to

After doing my pencil test I sanded down my film. I took my jewelers sanding blocks in gradient grits ranging from P60 to P600 and set about sanding the whole surface area. I tried to make it as smooth as possible and eliminate as many lines as I could.

Many people had talked of sanding their paper but only with one grit and in a back and forth motion. This didn’t seem enough to me so I sanded it as I would a piece of jewelry. It came out with a pretty good smooth surface though there were still some scratches in it.

Next, I taped my film over my pencil sketch and inked it with my fine tip sharpie on the unsanded side.  Having that one sharpie on hand sure saved me.


After it dried I turned it over to do the pencil on the sanded side.

Here is the piece with the colors finished. The shiny side is shown.

Then it was time for the oven. I was so nervous and thinking that maybe I was just a bit crazy to put so much time and effort into a shrink plastic piece!

By now I was used to the shrinking process and sat right in front of the oven. I opened it often to help the piece along when it curled too much. They can get hot but I don’t find them too hot to touch quickly. I just open the oven door, reach in and help it unbend a bit when it seems to be curling too much. Sometimes if they curl too much they stick together and I didn’t want that to happen.

It melted down well (with a little help) and then I set my bench block on top of it to flatten it further. It is nice and heavy and does the job perfectly!

Here is the finished piece and I am in love once again.


THis project made me so happy. Not only did I remind myself of how much I love to work with pencils and draw I also found a fantastic way to bring my fine art to my jewelry. 

Now my next job is to figure out how to wrap this in wire to make a pendant so that it satifies me. That itself might be a monumental task.

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