Thursday, October 13, 2011

Meet Smoosher member DreamWeaversDesigns

Polymer Clay Smoosher Jan, of DreamWeaversDesigns creates beautiful, colorful polymer clay jewelry and was kind enough to answer a few questions about her work and how she started smooshing clay ;-)
Blue and green polymer clay pendant Colorful large pendant Shades of green polymer clay tree under glass
With all the mediums available for crafting why did you choose Polymer clay? 
I chose polymer clay on a whim, just to see what could be done with it. I honestly thought it would be something like play-doh, and am so glad I was wrong. To be able to mimic so many things is amazing.
  How did you learn to use polymer clay? Internet, experimenting, books, classes..... 
I am self taught and used all the resources I could get my hands on to learn everything I could. The internet is fantastic for researching and with You-Tube, you can virtually learn anything. I also started my own library, grabbing every book I came across! It's great to go back through them now and understand what everything means.
What is your favorite tool to work with?
  I don't know that I have a favorite tool yet, but, I could not live without my pasta machine. I also recently purchased a buffer and just love how it makes my pieces shine.
Do you like to work with any mediums other than polymer clay? 
I did dabble in some wire wrapping and made several pieces. I'm now using a kumihimo loom and am making braided strands for my pendants.
What is your favorite polymer clay technique and why? 
So many techniques, so little time! Right now I am working at perfecting the mica shift technique, and think this may be one of the top favorites. I love the 3D effect and after sanding and buffing, the glassy shine is incredible. I also like mokume gane for the different surprises that come with every slice. One cane can make so many different looking pieces.
What is your least favorite technique and why? 
I don't necessarily have a least favorite technique, as I haven't been able to try them all! I must say that getting the perfect kaleidoscope cane is not that easy for me. I would love to be able to make the crisp, clear, colorful works of art I have seen others make.
What is on your "to do" or "to learn" list? 
I really want to learn how to make boxes. Also, just coming up with the perfect design to showcase the piece is always a goal.
Do you mix your own colors? Why or why not? 
Right now, I haven't mixed any colors "on purpose" to incorporate into a design. When I have mixed, it's random and usually as a means to use up left overs.
How do you keep your designs fresh and original? 
I am always looking at jewelry and browsing the internet. I usually don't have a specific design in mind when I start working with my clay, and really try to focus on making one of a kind pieces. I just go with the flow and technique and decide how it's going to look as I continue working.
What keeps you from getting into a creative rut? 
I recognize that everyone gets in ruts and I'm no different. If I find that I'm not making a piece that makes me happy, I'll stop for a while. Then I may go browsing and pick up my polymer clay books, or just visit some sites of famous polymer clay artisans and I can feel that "getting excited" spark.
What is your favorite brand of clay if you have one and why?
I mainly use Sculpey Premo clay as I find it fairly easy to condition and I like the results. Recently, I have bought some FIMO, if I couldn't find the Premo in the color I wanted.
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2 Smooshing Thoughts:

ArtFairly Aware said...

Beautiful! I love her work!

Susan Averello said...

All of her work is great but I really love the middle pendant at the top. Great work!