Thursday, June 30, 2011

Atoll No. 1

Start of a new series.

Faux Bone™, swarovski crystals, copper and brass rivets, copper wire, blue and green acrylic paint.  Eventually, I'll hang it from some Greek cord.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Still sawing, filing and sanding

I have started a new series using Faux Bone™.  I haven't stopped with the Organics, but writing that step-by-step used up a lot of time.  After setting that aside to sort of re-set the brain, I took a nearly full sheet of bone and drew out some designs and started sawing and sawing,  sawing, ending with twenty pieces.  I decided to saw all the pieces, one after other, rather than do one, finish it, then do another.

The shape of some of the pieces is different than any I had done before, and may be, in their own way, more interesting.  We'll see.

After sawing all the pieces, I took a mini-drum sander and smoothed the edges.  Now I have to decide how to finish them.

Then I retrieved the step-by-step, read it again and groaned.  It won't do.  Another re-write is called for, so it's back to the keypad for more typing.  Maybe I'll get it right this time!

I doubt if I can post any photos until  next mid-week.  Too many things in the way right now.

Monday, June 20, 2011


A friend has encouraged me to write a step by step article, so I have been busy writing and rewriting.  The article, if published, won't be until sometime in 2012.

Now that I finished the final draft, I can get back to making some jewelry.  Maybe I can get something finished by the weekend.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Organic 3

Faux Bone™ Sawn, shaped, inlay of plumber's epoxy putty, textured, colored with burnt sienna acrylic paint, Renaissance Wax.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Frustration Dampeners

Changing drill bits can be a hassle.  There are no 3/32" shank drill bits which exactly match wire gauge sizes, so using a quick change hand piece is out.  Using  keyed chuck hand piece is the only option, leaving one with constantly adjusting to this size bit to that size bit.  Shown are two different adapter chucks, both with 3/32" shanks.  The one on the left is meant for bits No. 60 down to 80.  The one on the right come with two chucks, for No. 60 on up to 48 (12 gauge).  The adapter chucks aren't that expensive.  I now have a full suite fitting wire gauges 12 through 26 gauge, including the 1/16" bit for certain eyelets and rivets.

I have placed them in individual plastic tubes and labeled them.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Thank you!

Galeriaaurus, Poland;  &  Kreativbua, Norway.  Thank you, ladies, for continuing to cite my jewelry making efforts on your blogs.  Thanks to both, viewers of this blog have increased dramatically.

Two more Organics are partially finished, and three more to start.  I like to work on more than one at a time.  I think it helps to get a fresh look at a piece after you've worked on it for awhile and then set it aside, out of sight, out of mind.  I will end with seven of the Organics and move on to other things for awhile.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Organic 2, Complete

Upper photo shows the piece after heating and domed in a wood dapping block.

The completed piece with texture and color, Burnt Sienna Acrylic.

Hope you like it!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Organic 2, partial

Organic 2.  Holes sawn and drilled, partially shaped by filing. Rivets installed.  As you can see, there's still a lot of little crumbs which need to be removed.  I may still add some more small holes.

Next step will probably be to heat the material and shape into a shallow dome.  Then add texture and color.

Galeria Trendymania again

To be fair to some of the other artists whose work I particularly like, they are, in no particular order:

Alabama,  Ksenia Art,  Extrano,  Drakonaria.  Aurus,  Vigoart,  7Malin,  Galeria Oko,  Hannah Studio,  Iza Malcyzk.

If you haven't taken a look, go ahead and do so.  I'm sure you will find plenty to admire.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

In Awe

It is difficult for me to grasp, but I am in awe of the number hits this blog received yesterday!  Amazing!  Thanks to all who visited, and who may visit in the future.

Some much needed supplies of wire arrived yesterday, 1 pound spools and that means that I must soon put up a board with pegs to hold them.  Ah gee, I will have to move the tool cabinet, no big deal as it is on rollers, but it also means moving the bench out away from the wall and moving the stump.  The stump has become heavier and harder to move with all of the stuff it's carrying. An all day job for me.

Also arriving, one of Wubber's newest pliers, the wire looping one.  It works absolutely great.  Not that I can't make loops the old fashioned way, but these pliers make loops a cinch.  One caveat, one size only.  If you want bigger loops, you still have to do it the old way.  I can see at sometime in the future, there may be a larger looper coming from Wubber's.  We'll just have to wait and see.

Organic 2 is one quarter finished.  For some strange reason, sawing it out was not fun, and I broke three blades.  Had be something I was doing wrong.  Maybe forcing the blade, white knuckle syndrome, take your pick.  Ended up using a short, bent blade, and taking a lot of care not to get the blade in bind.  That increased the sawing time considerably. Anyway, the sawing is done.  The next step is cleaning up the holes.  Then, I think I will put in some various size rivets, and then begin to shape the whole piece.  After that, heat it up with a heat gun and form the piece on a wood dapping block.

Thanks for your continued interest.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

More on the Organic piece

I asked a friend of mine to critique the piece, and not pull any punches.  If she thought it was not good, or could be improved to say so.  She is a lot smarter than I am, a long time teacher of jewelry making and a writer of articles on jewelry making.  Well, I can't tell how pleased I was when her critique was positive and encouraging.  As a result of her report, I am planning several additional pieces along the same organic line, and I hope I will be able to finish one before the weekend and post it.  I am very much taken by the nature illustrations by Ernst Haekel of tiny organisms, although reproducing these in faux bone or metal is far beyond my skill level.  But, I can use some parts as inspiration to make something which looks organic. Let's hope I am successful!

Thank you new followers and to all who have been curious about my work.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


Whole bunch of holes, drilled, sawed, filed, sanded, textured, colored with burnt sienna acrylic paint.  Approximately 2.5 cm x 4.2 cm.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Tool Tray for Faux Bone™ Work

Some things I like to keep neat on the bench.  In back, a checkering file and a small Fretz riveting hammer. A center punch is kept in the little section in front of the hammer handle.  I do not use the riveting hammer to strike the center punch. For that, I use a double head brass/nylon hammer. In front, left to right, Robert's swivel head shaping tool (actually a wax carving tool), which doesn't get much use, and a fine grit mini sanding drum, which gets a lot of use. Next are various files in various degrees of coarseness, a needle tool, triangular scraper, another needle file, flat # 2 that is sometimes used to neaten up the end of a rivet, an X-acto knife with the standard blade.  In the last compartment on the right, an old typewriter cleaning brush for cleaning files, and a tool I found on the street that I've altered into a sort of scriber. I have no idea what use it was intended for originally.  The white square in a piece of Faux Bone™.

Also, outside the tray, a woodworker's countersink drill bit.  Used to chamfer drilled holes to neaten them up a bit.  Playing cards with hole punched in them. Guide for cutting rivets to length.

Getting ready to cut another shape, a crescent, and showing more of the messy bench. Some other shapes and some ideas that didn't quite work out.  Maybe someday I can save them from extinction and use them in another piece.

Next post will show the next major process in making a piece.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

South Seas, almost complete

Piece complete except for the ending and the clasp.  Haven't decided what to do there.

The design of the necklace was inspired by a piece by Sydney Lynch, one of the artists featured in "Jewelry Design Challenge" edited by Linda Kopp.

Sydney used sterling silver tubing, all cut to the same length, South Seas uses copper tubing (from Metalliferous), random cut and textured, and treated with Cool Tools Patina Gel (LOS). With jump rings, by me. and copper beads from Blue Mud, strung on black greek leather cord from Monsterslayer.

Drops are all ocean jasper (most from Ebay sellers), on copper wire with balled ends.

One reason to put the ocean jasper beads on drops.  Greek cord won't go through the holes.  18 gauge wire will rarely go through without re-drilling, and sometimes 20 gauge won't go through on long shape beads because the manufacturer's drills aren't long enough, so they drill part way from one end, the turn the bead and drill back, hoping the two drill holes meet.  More often than not, they don't. What is really a strange thing is a bead with two different sized holes! 18 g fits one side, but only 20 g on the other. Strange.  The long bead on the left had one end where a piece had cracked off.  To even the end up I used an aluminum oxide cut-off wheel (with water) in flex-shaft.  Took about 20 minutes, worth it to save a nicely patterned bead.

Cool Tool's Patina Get is great stuff to work with, still stinky though, as you might expect with liver of sulfur.  Where lump los quickly loses it's effectiveness with exposure to air, you can leave Patina Gel container open and it doesn't degrade. Plus, it's much easier to get the strength of solution you desire, and it will work with cool water.  Just slower working.

Thanks for taking a look.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Galeria Trendymania

When I turn on the computer in the morning, Galeria Trendymania is usually the first site I visit.  There is so much just simply superb work there in several different disciplines.  The only thing about the site I don't like is that it's all Polish text and translation to English is often difficult to impossible, even with online dictionaries and translation services.  I am able to figure out some of the text, but it is still a chore.

There is one jewelry artist whom I would like to take the opportunity to extol her work, and that is Fiann.  It seems that in any medium she choses to work, she does a masterful job.  Be it metalwork, metal clay, or polymer clay, it is all excellently done.  If you visit the site, you can find her work under "Bizuteria", = Jewelry.

Fiann  is not alone.  There are many others deserving of praise.  Check it out.

I guess I am getting old.  My energy level has gone down considerably.  I've been working on and off on one particular necklace which is giving me a lot of difficulty.  Tomorrow, I will do some patination on some of the parts of the design, and after that, I may be able to finish getting it together.

Thanks for your patience.