Thursday, February 18, 2016

Combining Techniques

by Staci Louise Smith

I love learning new things.  Each time I learn a new technique, I begin to realize I will probably never ever use it the way I learned it.  Or worse, get to do it again.

I make beads and jewelry.  Occasionally other things, but most of my time is spent making beads.

So, when I get to use techniques, that were perhaps supposed to be for something else, in my beads and jewelry, its a happy day.

I got into carving beads around the time I got into Lino Cuts. I love lino cuts, and one year, I gave myself some time to play, and actually made a few.  It reminded me how much I like to carve ( the photo's below were the few lino cuts I made, used in mixed media pieces).  

But alas, my beads weren't going to make themselves.  Some other events happened and carving was on my brain, and voila, I was carving beads!

My bead carving has come a long way from where I started, and I must say, I LOVE it.   

So, now I am on this Zen Stone kick.  Where my carvings carry all the way around the beads.  I LOVE THEM.  I love to make them, I love how they look and feel.  I have been making big batches for something lately.

Another technique I have been playing with these days, is my Gold Rush technique.

Anyhow, I am loving that one too.

Well today, as I made huge batches of the Zen Stone beads, I wondered if I could make a Zen stone bead, that looks like it has a vein of gold running through it, and then carve it, marrying the two techniques.  So out of all the beads I made, I tried ONE.  Just in case it was a big fail.



Let me tell you, it doesn't always work out like it looks in my head.  But this one did, and I am so glad!  Looks like pyrite in a carved stone.  

So, now I have a new direction.  My wheels are turning to try other veins in stones too.  Like boulder opal beads, or imaginary ones even.  

Anyhow, let this encourage you, to learn new things.  Even if its not something you think you will not use.  You may end up using it in a different way.

And PLAY.  Combine techniques.  You will never know where your creativity can go unless you try.  You will never know if something works unless you just do it and see.  

Have fun and PLAY today!


bug Jenkins said...

Wow that is so cool! You are so creative and inspiring! Random question as well, what kind of chains do you normally use, my prefered metal is copper but most of the chains I find are plated, is that what you use also?

craftyd said...

You make such fun beads, love your Gold Rush technique and your new combo is pretty neat too.

Erin Fish said...

Love the combination Staci - and your encouragement to just PLAY!

Linda Landig said...

Such fabulous work, Staci!

Barbara said...

Now, these I like. I'm not normally into non-stone beads, but these are reeeeeeeeeeeeeeally cool.

Karen Z said...

So inspiring! Alas, this is a 'clean up your stash boxes' kind of studio day... but clearing the decks is an inspiration in itself. Just have to avoid the temptation to create on the spot. Empty work table and loads of possibilities. Thanks for adding the encouragement I needed!

Debbie Pippin said...

Love your blog! The look of precious metal veins in your beads is so inspiring. It makes me wish I made beads, but I am a card making crafter. I have several small pieces of pyrite that I find on my gravel road along with quartz. It's so pretty and I keep it I but haven't had any ideas for uses, until now. Thank you for sharing you lovely work and inspiring creations.

Ann Schroeder said...

Wow, that is beautiful. And I love the idea of being able to use techniques from other art in the bead work you are doing to good effect.

Leona said...

Love it! All of it - the zen, the goldrush and the combo. Most of all, love how you took your ideas and ran with it. What fun!

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