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Wednesday, April 9, 2014


Samples of felt work by Gail Crosman Moore

Another reason that I haven't had time to blog is because I had the great pleasure of spending 2 days taking classes with Gail Crosman Moore here in NYC.  The first class, as you can tell from the photos, was a felting class.

Some of Gail's felted pods

One of her needle-felted pieces

Here are some of the lovely colors of wool that were available for our projects.

Some of our felted flowers, pods, and ropes drying on the heater for the room.

We accomplished a lot of felting and had a good time along the way. Gail also explained how to sew beads onto the felt but my felted pieces are still waiting for me to add beads.

The second day-long class was an introduction to Goldie bronze clay.  Like silver clay, you mold the clay, fire it in a kiln, and come out with a bronze item.  I have never done any sculpting and wasn't particularly enthused about the class beforehand (sorry Gail), but I am so  glad that I took it.

Gail showed us how to work with the clay, how to make a silicone mold to shape the clay, how to make an impression of something (like a button) with the clay, how to dry the piece, and how to fire items in the kiln.  Here are my 3 experiments:

From top left, clockwise: a mushroom, impression of a crocheted circle, and a piece made from a silicone mold that I made using a section of coral, a penny for size comparison.

Here is a shot of the whole mushroom.  There are 2 holes in the cap so that I can hang it as a pendant.

While we were waiting for the bronze clay pieces to fire, Gail taught us how to color metal components with inks.
The two leaves and a big bug that I painted.

I was reluctant to take the bronze clay class because I have never done anything like it and I am not good at thinking on my feet--we only had about 1.5 hours to make our clay items because they had to go in the kiln at a certain time to be done before the end of class.  It turns out that I was reluctant for no reason because Gail gave us a lot of support as we  experimented and I produced 3 decent items.

The two classes also broke through a creative block.  I was having a hard time starting on a bead embroidery project because I spend a lot of time trying to figure out all of the aspects of a project before I start--necessary for a theater costume but potentially frustrating for a beading project.  I had so much fun experimenting in both classes that my attitude afterwards was just "do it and see what happens."  The new approach worked pretty well on the bead-embroidered necklace, reminding me that sometimes being out of your comfort zone is a good thing.

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