Saturday, December 15, 2012

Something for everyone on your list....

Holiday shopping is in full swing, and people are excited to have a place to find unique polymer artwork. Husbands are being dragged in with their wives, only to discover polymer could be their new hobby, and at the least, that they have found a source of fun presents they can surprise their wives with. We are delighted to have new work from Judy Belcher, Lindly Haunani and Leslie Blackford, who have been with us since we opened. Equally exciting, we have a new artist in our old friend Dayle Doroshow, who sent us a collection of her mixed media art, from dolls to pins to cloth and polymer bracelets to wall hangings with pins as an integral part, as well as a spectacular polymer, abalone, bone and stone necklace. We have some wonderful new sterling, brass and colored copper pieces from Deb Karash. We’ve loaded up on Ron Lehocky hearts, including some Christmas ones, knowing that these are great teacher presents and stocking stuffers. The man is into his next 20,000 hearts and we intend to do our part! No rest for the weary… you, Ron!

Hope you are asking for Synergy3 for holiday gifts, and don’t forget about the bus tour to Buford….it’s filling up, so don’t miss out! We still have space in Dani and Natalia’s class on the 10th and 11th before Synergy3.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Awesome Addition to your Synergy 3 Experience

Creative Journey Studios is excited to offer a wonderful polymer experience – two days of sharing polymer ideas with Dani Torres and Natalia Garcia de Leaniz. This class will be held in advance of Synergy 3 on March 10th and 11th at the Studios in Buford, Georgia. This dynamic couple from Spain presents new ideas for working with their favorite art material – polymer clay.

Natalia will lead you back to the retro world of the sixties while exploring color and textures, combining different types of free cuts - straight, curved and conical - to build chunky and eye-catching beads.


Natalia will cover two kinds of beads that bring together many different techniques, each one more useful, quick and easy to enjoy: free hand blade and craft knife cutting, drilling, texturing, Skinner-blending, and using liquid clay. She will then help you combine them to make bracelets and necklaces, looping for the perfect balance from bead to focal, from form to color.

Dani will share his particular interest in hollow forms, where polymer clay's unique capabilities to balance lightness and structural robustness meet the endless possibilities for inspiration, ever most beautiful, offered by Nature. In this class Dani will help you create super-hollow pieces to wear. He’ll share views and tips on design, balance and composition to fabricate ethereal beads and bracelets.

If you are coming to Synergy 3, we hope you will expand your visit by taking advantage of this opportunity to learn from these international superstars! Experience a mini-retreat at Creative Journey Studios, where an intimate teaching environment with a gallery and study collection full of inspiration will breathe new life into your polymer art.


We are taking registrations for this class at 404-314-5767. The cost for the two days is $225. Your place can be secured with a credit card over the phone. A short supply list will be provided to students closer to the class time. 


Thursday, September 27, 2012

Synergy 3 Bus Tour to Creative Journey Studios

Just a brief heads-up that the sign-up button for the Synergy 3 bus trip to visit Creative Journey Studios is up and functioning. (Already have had four sign-ups!)  There is limited space so don't procrastinate and miss the fun. Go to, read the blurb, get your credit card and hit the Paypal button. You know the drill! We know it is going to be a fun day. Christi Friesen and Leslie Blackford are going to be giving demos. We're going to be having drawings for polymer prizes. We think this will be a highlight of your trip. If you have questions, give us a call at 404-314-5767.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

I'm worn out just writing about it!

I have a feeling that things will be like a whirlwind around here in the fall. We have new products in Filigree & more, new tools in the toolroom, new artists in the gallery, some wonderful new pieces in the exhibit (like a new pendant from Libby Mills, three necklaces from Julie Eakes and a fabulous new necklace from Jeff Dever!), and a parade of classes coming up. In September we will have Christi Friesen rockin' the joint! We love Christi (but she wears me out....she doesn't sleep, I'm sure...and she always has a smile on her face...except when she is sticking her tongue out.)

She is going to be sharing her tricks for sculpting and then using resin to capture our sculpted treasures and turn them into unique polymer pendants. Her second class will introduce us to her new product line - Swellegant. These are metal coatings, patinas and dye-oxides that can be intermixed to create  unique metallic finishes. I can hardly wait to experiment with her!
Right after Christi, we have a new class from Lindly Huanani. Just when you thought you knew all there was about color, here comes Lindly with a new way of looking at color and color mixing.She will increase your confidence in combining colors and show you how to combine color shifted stripe patterns. You'll learn new ways to 'audition' color combinations, so you feel confident striking out on your own. You'll work toward creating a 'library' of 12 to 15 color-coordinated canes to work with.
The following weekend we're headed to Savannah for a demo for Polyform at a new Dick Blick that's opening. If you're in the area, come see us and say "hello". The next weekend we're off to Arrowmont for a class with Deb Karash in cold connections, and with Gail Nelson in enameling. It's our annual get smart week! At the end of the month, it's time for Mammoth Cave -- the Kentucky Guild Retreat.
Stay tuned for what's up in November and December. We'll be involved with Synergy3 planning. We hope you are setting aside time to come to Atlanta for Synergy3 in March. The International Polymer Clay Guild is having its biennial conference here in town. We are planning a bus trip out to Buford so you won't miss Creative Journey Studios. We have some wonderful pre and post-synergy classes in the works. Watch the blog for details as plans solidify.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Fantastic weekend with Julie Eakes

We had a wonderful weekend workshop with Julie Eakes, teaching her techniques for making face canes. It was an impressively organized and orchestrated workshop. Julie has done her homework in getting ready to teach this class. Everyone got a lot of individual attention, and got a good grasp on caning techniques, in general, as well as creating very impressive face canes. Learning how to reduce a large cane was, in my opinion, worth the price of admission! We discovered our new work bench in the tool room was a fantastic place to reduce the canes. There was a lot of pounding around here--I wonder what the boys downstairs were thinking of the racket!

Julie and Anita deep in discussion.

On Monday, after a farewell lunch at Aqua Terra, Julie headed back to Charlotte, but not before adding to our retrospective collection, "Polymer from the Beginning". We are so excited to have three of her necklaces, including two using her new framing techniques. These have to be viewed first hand to really appreciate the artistry and precision of the layers of frames she has created. I felt like I was viewing the intricate frames around a renaissance masterpiece, housing one of her extruded cane mosaic 'paintings'. They are really amazing!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Creative Journey Studios and the SyFy Channel present Lindly Haunani in “Shape Shifters Attack the Mother Cane in Rural America”…….

Well, maybe not….perhaps it’s just a dynamite new workshop with one of our favorite polymer masters, Lindly Haunani!

This new and exciting two day workshop, “Color Shifting Canes” will increase your confidence in combining colors while exploring combining color shifted stripe patterns. To start, Lindly will guide through the creation of a large “Mother” cane reflective of your personal color sensibilities. Your starting palette may range from super vibrant to deep rich muted fall colors.  You will then learn how to mix a dark that will give your color combination punch, along with strategies for auditioning color combinations to expand your ideas.

Once your “mother” cane is complete, you will be creating five different patterns including: leaves, herringbone, outlined stripes, a pin -wheel quilt block and lined stripes in multiple color-ways.  You will then have a library of 12-15 color-coordinated canes.

Explore using the same graphics at different scales, combining multiple patterns, creating edges and finishes to enhance your designs- while making a series of brooches. Lindly will show you how to make “twigs”, pinch leaves, shape shift your canes and explore finished jewelry design possibilities.

This is a wonderful opportunity to play with color and open yourself to new design ideas while having a fun weekend workshop. Here's a little insight into Lindly--and how her mind works. This is the quilt ( that inspired the development of this class.
Quilt by Anne Parker
Scroll down on the Summer Classes page for more information, pictures and pricing.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Catch up with the news!

We hope you will read beyond the first page of the blog: check out the Summer Class page and the First Thursday page to keep track of the classes coming up: Wire Weaving with Cindy Moore on July 21 & 22; Etched Collage with Cold Connections with Kim St. Jean on August 4; Steampunk Dangles with Kim St. Jean on August 5; Pollage with Patricia DiBona on August 10th; Face Canes with Julie Eakes on August 11 & 12; Wirewrapping with Jan Stephens on August 18th; Patricia and Ellen will guide you in making a Gratitude Altar on August 22 and 23; First Thursday with Patricia and Ellen on September 6th; Captured Curiousities with Resin with Christi Friesen on September 8th; Fee Fi Faux Fabulous (Introducing Swellegant metal coatings and patinas) with Christi Friesen on September 9th; and finally….Lindly Haunani is coming back for a weekend workshop on September 15 & 16 where she will share a new class she is debuting at CJS. Whew! It’s getting to be a whirlwind around here…not to mention a couple trips out of town (for the Connecticut retreat and Arrowmont).

A highlight of our summer was a wonderful class with Sarah Shriver. She presented her kaleidoscope cane techniques on the weekend, and then on Tuesday we used our newly made canes and skinner blends to create “Big Beads with reverse inlays”. She is an amazing teacher. Being able to watch her hands closely and glean the little tricks she uses was invaluable. We will definitely be bringing her back next year.

 We just wanted to catch you up on the latest news and excitement. We have been busy expanding the retrospective collection and creating new signage. We also have been adding new artists and rearranging the work for sale in the gallery. Everyone has new tent cards with the Creative Journey Studios logo on them. Between that and combating the major quantities of dust from all the road construction, we have been very busy. We’ve also been stocking new items in Filigree & more, our supply store. We are now carrying Pardo clay—the translucent is amazing, especially for building hollow beads around pressed cotton balls from England (we have five sizes!)  We have a new cutting tool---the Testor blade that Ron Lehocky recommended at his demo (which was fantastic—he shared a lot of pointers on pendant construction.

The tool room is shaping up. One of Patricia’s student’s husband put together our work bench and we have a new bench lathe for polishing beads. We also have a new flex shaft ready to be explored. We are now Foredom distributors, so check with us before you plunge on any of their fantastic tools. I think you will find we are more than competitive with the pricing.

Jimmie Boatright has designed some new class pieces. We have made her some new polymer cabochons which she is using to make wonderful bracelets. She is all set to teach her new techniques.

Patricia DiBona has been busy gearing up for some shows and has created some new numbered shadow boxes featuring her “frozen Charlottes”,  little porcelain dolls from Victorian Germany. She’s been organizing her studio and finding lots of vintage goodies for her future classes. She has a soldering class coming up on July 18th, so check the class schedule on the blog ( She is always willing to put together a class designed especially for you. She and Ellen will have a special “First Thursday” class on August 2, with mixed media and polymer components –“Story Necklace”. You’ll be making and stringing beads that have special meaning to you. I think I’ll go for the faux ivory bead with “energized” stamped on it!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Let's "Face" it--Julie Eakes has got it goin' on

Creative Journey is planning a busy, entertaining weekend of face cane making with Julie Eakes. Julie has been busy creating new takes on the ultimate uses of her wonderful canes, so you will not only learn the her style of face cane making, but get a grasp on how to utilize your wonderful finished product. She will expand your knowledge of cane reduction as well. Julie is the “queen” of giant cane reducing---it’s a treat to watch her techniques.

If you haven’t experienced Creative Journey Studios yet, this is a great class. We keep our classes small, so you get a lot of individual attention. You are surrounded by polymer inspiration with the gallery and our retrospective collection. You have access to our supply store, Filigree & More, for last minute purchases of hard to find products. You can walk into our working studios to see what is being created on a day to day basis. In short, you can come to ‘Polymer Nirvana’.

Join us on August 11th and 12th for face cane making fun. Come with your clay conditioned (we’ll post a list of supplies soon), so we can jump right in and accomplish this big task in a two day class. Julie has blogged about the class on her blog at, so you can see some additional pictures of earlier classes.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The latest word....

Free Demo on Saturday (June 23rd from 1 to 3pm)! Ron Lehocky, who makes polymer heart pins to support his charity, the Kids Center for Pediatric Therapies in Louisville, KY is coming for a visit to Creative Journey Studios. He has graciously offered to give a free demo about how he makes his wonderful hearts. His techniques can apply to all sorts of polymer pin making, and it will be fun to watch him in action. After 19,200 hearts at last count, Ron definitely has some tips to share. We've been busy at the gallery and have expanded our retrospective collection to an even more mind-boggling size. This is a great opportunity to see what we are all about, have some good snacks and visit with other hardcore polymer addicts.

Also coming up is Sarah Shriver. Sarah will be teaching a weekend workshop on July 7th and 8th on her intricate kaleidoscope cane techniques, using painterly skinner blends. You will learn to obtain the illusion of depth and movement by using a repeating interlocking pattern. You will develop the visual texture and quality of a fairly simple cane to create infinite and intricate variations. Sarah has lots to share about bead construction and finishing techniques. If you have ever had the chance to see Sarah’s work up close, and to feel her beads, you know this class is not to be missed.

Sarah is staying to teach an extra session on Tuesday, July 10th. She will present her take on making ‘Big Beads’, using Sculpey Ultralight clay (which Polyform is providing for the class—thank you, Iris). Using kaleidoscope cans or simple skinner bends as veneers, the class will make molds, pinch, carve and utilize Sarah’s new techniques for reverse inlay to create an array of beads that showcase these cool techniques. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn from one of polymer’s premier teachers. The weekend is just $215 and Tuesday is $105. You can hold your spot by calling 404-314-5767 with a credit card. If you have further questions, please give us a call!
Be sure to check the summer classes page often. Don't miss Cindy Moore, Julie Eakes, Christi Friesen, Lindly Haunani, Kim St. Jean, Tammy Honaman, Judy Belcher and Jana Roberts Benzon. We're making lots of fun plans for the rest of summer and into fall.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

We "heart" Ron....

.. especially when he hearts us! Ron Lehocky, heart pin maker extraordinaire, is coming to visit Creative Journey Studios. He and his lovely wife Peg are vacationing in Georgia, and Ron has offered to give a free demo on how he makes his amazing hearts. ( He has raised over $180,000 for his charity, The Kids Center for Pediatric Therapies  $10 at a time.) Come join us on Saturday, June 23 from 1 to 3 pm. We'll have lots of hearts for you to choose from. (Here's a link to see some of his hearts posted on Polymer Clay Daily before he topped 18,000.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Back from the hills....

Barbara McGuire has moved to the mountains north of Asheville and has settled in a darling little house outside of Mars Hill. She will be back in town to teach a one day, special class for us, here at Creative Journey Studios. Join us on May 26th from 10 AM to 5 PM to learn how to make "polymer cabochons with silver bezels". This two sided necklace will provide lots of possibilities for texture options, as well as color.

You'll need to decide how many beads you want in your finished creation, as you sign up and we'll reserve that many bezels for you (the silver is in addition to the class fee of $85) There is more information on the Spring Class page about this and other upcoming classes.

Also coming up in May on the 25th (from 10 to noon), Patricia DiBona is teaching her introduction to soldering class. Learn to solder using time tested techniques. The class will cover basic layering, creating, wrapping and soldering techniques. Glass, images and resources will be included in the $75 class fee. Finish your piece with a leather choker or a silver plated chain that you will assemble to complete your project.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Saddle up your horse and polish your armor!

Panel from the Bayeux Tapestry
Let the jousting begin! Just kidding! Seeing awesome chainmaille does strange things to me! We have a new teacher and some of her fabulous work to sell in the gallery. Dian Parker is coming to Creative Journey Studios to teach how to create a Byzantine bracelet in chainmaille. If you, too, have always been fascinated by this higher use for a jump ring, join Dian for this new class on June 21. We're having two sessions to choose from (1-3 or 6:30-8:30pm) for $50 plus supplies (~$40).
We have some lovely examples of Dian's work in the gallery. Stop by and check it out!

Also, don't forget that another fun "First Thursday" project is coming up. On May 3rd, Ellen and Patricia are teaching "Your Outer Goddess". You'll create a polymer goddess pendant and a wired bead chain. What a deal....a fun afternoon or evening and you go home with a treasure!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

New Work in the Gallery

We have new artists (Debbie Jackson and Peggy Martin) in the Gallery, and new work from one of our original artists (Kim Korringa). Debbie's new collection of earrings and necklaces has a wonderful tribal or ethnic bent. Debbie was fortunate to take an amazing trip to Ghana where she was able to visit with many of the talented artists doing batik and brass work. It has definitely informed her new pieces. You'll definitely want to add one of these spectacular one of a kind pieces to your collection.

Peggy Martin's new work is in cold connections and fold-forming of metals. She has made some wonderful pendants and uses interesting chain. She also has brought us some dynamite earrings. Kim Korringa sent a new batch of her wonderful fairy wing earrings. They are really special. There are even two pairs of black and white ones that are really fun.
We also have some new local teachers who will be creating new fun classes on a more regular basis. Jimmie Boatright will be teaching beading classes for us....we already have her scheduled to teach "embellishing filigree" and "capturing cabochons". We had an opportunity to photograph a large portion of her work, and I foresee other classes in the making. Mamie Velez is going to share some calligraphy based classes, like drawing flourishes. I see these as potential surface designs for polymer pieces. She is also going to teach the "artful doodle", which is similar to zentangling with calligraphic elements. We all love to doodle so why not doodle on polymer....hmmm!
Patricia DiBona and Ellen Prophater are busy dreaming up new classes for their combined class that they present the first Thursday of every month. Their collaborative work is expanding both of their horizons. I can hardly wait to see the effect of the encaustic painting symposium up in Massachusetts they are going to attend in June.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

No Rabbits, No Queen of Hearts . . . Just Alice

I think it was the "cane heard 'round the world".  Alice Stroppel solved a common problem -- scrap clay -- with her brilliant idea, the Stroppel Cane.  We all dream of having an idea that goes viral, and Alice has succeeded.  Clayers all over the world are making beads using Alice's great technique.  Now she is coming to Creative Journey Studios to teach workshops on her other distinctive techniques.  On April 21, she will be teaching her take on face canes.

I know you have seen her wonderful whimsical "girls" and now you will be able to create your own batch of beauties. Then on April 22, she will guide you through the process of drawing on polymer clay.  All together now ... "but I can't draw, Alice!"  She possesses the magic to turn us all into happy pen and inkers.

If you haven't seen Alice's work, you are in for a treat. Her designs are simple, but effective ... whimsical, but brilliant.  She has a wonderful blog at which showcases her many talents.

When we first opened, Alice (and her trusty video camera) came up from Florida to help us get the doors open and to document the process. She gave us lots of pointers on videography and made the first video tour of our facility.  We will always remember all the help she provided as we started this journey, and we can hardly wait to have her back!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Excitement in the Wings . . .

We have some wonderful classes coming up. The excitement is almost palpable. The month of March starts on Thursday, March 1st, with another Creative Journey Studios:  First Thursday Project. This time Patricia and Ellen are presenting a spiral book project "Birds of a Feather."

Next is Mary Pratt's "Songbird Triptych" class that we rescheduled for Thursday, March 8th.  Take the extra time and get the word out to your friends about the great opportunity this class offers.  Mary is well known as a muralist as evidenced by many of the local restaurants.  While wandering around Buford, you can often see work in progress in her studio. In this small, intimate class setting, you will have access to all of Mary's brilliance.  We've included all the canvases and supplies.  We think you'll find this class is worth your time and money.

Next on the horizon is the start of Jan Stephens' Three Session "Wire-Wrapping Class."  The first class starts on Saturday, March 10th, with a hammered link collar and wrapping a donut shaped cabochon.  You'll be wrapping like Queen Latifah and Jay-zee before you know it!  Oh, wait . . . wrong rap!

On Thursday, March 15, we are introducing Mamie Velez to our class lineup.  She will be teaching a calligraphy class called "A Flair for Flourishes."  This is a great class to begin your journey into the world of calligraphy.  If you are already a calligrapher, this is a great class to expand your range and learn to create fabulously embellished projects.  You will learn the basic strokes and have the opportunity to practice before her next class.

Later, Thursday, March 22nd, Jimmie Boatright is going to make our filigree shine with her "Embellishing Filigree with Beads" class.  'Filigree & more' brings you access to about four hundred styles of American-made raw brass filigree made with vintage dies by a small family-run business.  Filigree has often been used as an armature for building jewelry. We continue that tradition by beading on pieces of filigree. Jimmie will teach you the basics of seed beading as well as discussing design options.  We'll have everything you need for this class, and once you are an expert, you'll find more beads at the Atlanta Bead Market, where Jimmie and Judy DeWitt will be delighted to steer you to the best goodies.

On the weekend, the March 24th and 25th, Patricia DiBona and Ellen Prophater are teaching the "Sacred Altar" mixed media class.  Patricia has a treasure trove of vintage images to collage, and Ellen will lead you through the paces on the polymer side of things.  You'll learn techniques as well as design in this fun project.  Ultimately, you will participate in a guided meditation and have made your own personal shrine to focus your thoughts and dreams.

Finally, the month ends, Saturday, March 31st, with a visit from internationally known teacher, Carol Simmons to teach her new "Art Nouveau Leaves in Mokume Gane". We are very excited to welcome Carol to Creative Journey.  Carol has received a lot of attention for her kaleidoscoped pendants. She has developed an amazing system of piecing slices together after using her Simmons Slicer System, which she is working hard to bring to the polymer market.  Her background in science is evident when you witness her precise mathematical mindset.  One of her strengths is her color sense, and she spends a great deal of time thinking about color palettes.  Now she brings that enthusiasm to mokume gane.  She has created bright metallic billets which she ultimately forms into mokume veneered leaf pendants.  If you like color and want insights into a shiny finish, this is the class for you.

You can read more descriptions on the calendar pages and you can get more information and sign up by calling 404-314-5767. Registration for classes will close three business days before the class.  This gives us a chance to prepare for the correct number of students.  Come experience the new classroom and check out the new store

Monday, February 6, 2012

Meta Strick . . . What a Doll!

Meta Strick is as unique as her art dolls. We are so fortunate to have a nice selection of her wonderful dolls in the gallery. Meta paints, sketches, cuts, carves, sews and assembles these mixed media treats. Sometimes she makes a miniature book for the doll to hold, or finds an antique handkerchief to serve as a skirt, or adds an old thimble to fill the basket the doll holds. She often uses her calligraphy to add just the right word to complete her doll.

Meta uses acrylic paint and 16 x 20 canvases to create her ethereal female images. Meta also loves to work in her sketch book, never wasting a drop of paint. Brushes are emptied on random pages to
become an inspiration later. She participated in last year's sketchbook project. Some of her beautiful faces adorn note cards we have for you at CJS. You can see the digitized sketch book at✓&display_name=Meta+strick&theme_id=&commit=Search&country=&city=&province=&state=

Art has always been a part of Meta's life. From her earliest days, she claims to have had an aversion to coloring within the lines, even choosing to fill the white spaces outside the lines with her own drawings. She trained formally at Carnegie Mellon and has been sharing her wisdom ever since. A leader of the Vermont hand crafters, she makes her art and teaches workshops. The students at the Community College of Vermont are fortunate to be inspired by this art dynamo. And we are fortunate to count Meta as a friend, and love that we can share her art with you.

You can see more of Meta's art by visiting her website at As you peruse her site, you'll see why we're so impressed with Meta. Then come in and visit the gallery, and add one of Meta's dolls to your collection. It will put a permanent smile on your face!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Carol Blackburn . . . From the Other Side of the Pond!

I dare say....Carol Blackburn is "brill".  If you made it through ninth grade geometry, you have a leg up on understanding Carol's colorful jewelry.  Impeccably made designs use strips of skinner blend fashioned to imply a möbius strip design.  According to Wolfram MathWorld, the Möbius strip, also called the twisted cylinder, is a one-sided nonorientable surface obtained by cutting a closed band into a single strip, giving one of the two ends thus produced a half twist, and then reattaching the two ends.  That was totally greek to me, but oh well!  I don't have to understand it to wear it!

Her necklaces and earrings are quite different, and people unfamiliar with polymer are always at a loss what material they are made out of.  Carol has published a book, "Making Polymer Clay Beads" that should be in everyone's library.  The book gives you insight into many techniques and a plethora of bead shapes.  She was one of the founder's of the London Polymer Clay Guild and is an active member of the IPCA.

If you surf to Carol's website (, you'll see that color is an important part of why Carol works with polymer.  In addition to earrings and necklaces, Carol fashions little bowls, pens, and drapery tassels. She also tackles many different styles of bangle bracelets.  She will be in Santa Fe in February teaching a weekend workshop.  If you're in the area, you should take advantage of this wonderful opportunity.

We have a nice selection of Carol's earrings and a couple of her fabulous cone bead necklaces.  Her work is beautifully executed...something we should all aspire to.

"Lovely"---in my best British accent!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Our Friend Ron Lehocky

We love Dr. Ron....Ron Lehocky, a Louisville pediatrician and polymer artist extraordinaire.  We first got to know Ron at a polymer retreat, and we look forward to crossing paths with Ron at Arrowmont, Mammoth Cave, Synergy...whenever polymer and fun are happening.  A lot of you know of Ron through his amazing fundraising activity...making heart pins to raise money for The Kids Center for Pediatric Therapies.  He sells his creations for $10, all of which goes to this worthy charity.  What started as an attempt to make a thousand hearts, has now surpassed 18,013. It's always fun to see the timely hearts for different holidays.  Halloween, with its glow in the dark mummy and ghost hearts, is fun to celebrate with a Ron heart.  Thanksgiving brings turkey hearts, and Christmas, hearts with Santa hats.  We have prevailed upon him to let us sell his wonderful hearts at our gallery and we send the ten dollars without commission as our small bid to help the cause.

We are all set for Valentine's Day.  I know you need a heart pin....we can even put a converter on it so it can be worn as a pendant.  You can also check out the other styles of jewelry made by Ron in the gallery.  We knew he made other things and also knew there was a limit to what his wonderful wife needed to wear, so we made him part with some of his other treasures.  His craftmanship is amazing, and sometimes you can see a gifted scrap cane reappearing in his work.  It is definitely upcycling!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Lindly Haunani, Show Stopper!

Everyone who comes to our gallery does a double take when they first catch a glimpse of Lindly Haunani's display.  Her fantastic floral lei necklaces definitely say "Aloha" (in the "hello" sense) to our new guests, as they wander around with dropped jaws.  It is always fun to welcome someone new to polymer into our gallery.  Perhaps, at times, there is sensory overload.  Always there is a gasp and an "oh my, look how the colors almost glow" when they first admire Lindly's work.  I have to explain that Lindly is of Hawaiian descent, and when they glimpse her asparagus bracelet in the exhibit, that she is a 'foodie'.  I next explain that she has written the definitive book on color, and that we love to have Lindly come to Creative Journey Studios to teach.  I show her class samples and they are hooked, and they didn't know they even liked polymer before today.  (Watch the calendar page for information about her next class, which is in mid-September.)

We've known Lindly for four years now and have taken every class she has least once.  Now we have the pleasure of bringing her here to teach.  She is knowledgeable, energetic and just plain fun.  Come visit and I'll bet you'll decide you need a pair of her earrings for spring.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Calendar Page

Be sure to check the calendar page of our blog to get the full story.  If you use your iPhone to check our blog, it is not obvious that there are multiple pages to see.  Besides the home page, there is a calendar, a page about RAM, and an about us page.

The calendar is getting a lot of updates as we plan for the year's classes and we don't want you to miss out.  We had a nice mention on Cynthia Tinapple's blog - - this morning (my day doesn't start until I've read her blog, and there is a wealth of information to root through when you have a dull moment.)  We hope our blog will tempt you to come visit Creative Journey Studios if you are in the Atlanta area.  There is so much to see!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Exploring Silk Screening on Polymer Clay

Creative Journey Studios is delighted to bring Karen Woods to Buford to provide an introduction to silk screening.  Perhaps this will be a completely different jumping off place for you when you wish to impart texture to the surface of your polymer clay piece.  In this 2 day workshop students will learn to create individualized graphic designs; make inexpensive light activated silk screens; and silkscreen patterns and overlays onto polymer clay to create surface designs.  These polymer patterns can then be combined to create collaged jewelry pieces, wall art, and other forms of expression.  Karen is known for her collaged vestment pins and pendants. 

I first met Karen at Synergy I in Baltimore, where she was enthusiastically talking about the use of polymer with basketry.  As a hand weaver and basket maker, she has some very interesting takes on polymer.  I know it will be a lively class and you will go home with your head spinning with the possibilities.

A lot of people wear t-shirts with pictures of their heroes on the front.  I guess I will have to make one with the following picture of Song Taizu, the founder of the Song Dynasty.

My Hero
Silly?  Yes, but it got your attention, didn't it?  I went to Wikipedia and found out that screen printing was first seen in China during the Song Dynasty.  This type of printing was adopted by other Asian countries and was advanced as a craft with the use of block printing and hand applied paints.

As silk became more readily available in Europe, screen printing became a viable method of transferring an image to surfaces.  It was used a lot in early wallpaper creation.  Many methods and substrates have come and gone, but people continue to be interested in this technique and create easier and easier ways to accomplish screenprinting.  Here's a link to a great article for further reading --  Polymer clay seems to work really well with acrylic paint, and screen printing is a great way to add design elements to your art.

Friday, January 6, 2012

"Terra Nova" has arrived!

We're very excited (and feeling very special) as we have been allowed to offer "Terra Nova - Polymer at the Crossroads", the book published to celebrate the exhibition by the same name at the Racine Art Museum, for sale at Creative Journey Studios.  A history to date of polymer clay, this tome presents an erudite discussion of the "boundary breakers" featured in the amazing collection now on view in Racine.  Rachel Carren, Lena Vigna and Bruce Pepich illuminate the collection and its path to existence.  Elise Winters' polymer collection project is celebrated, as it should be.  We had the good fortune to attend the opening of the exhibit and the accompanying symposium held at Wingspread and the Johnson Foundation Headquarters.  How incredible it was to be privy to the debates and opinions of many of today's respected polymer artists.  A happy weekend was spent listening to the history, as well as the projected future of polymer clay as a respected art medium.

The exhibit will be on view until Feb. 5th, so it's not too late for a visit, and it is truly not to be missed.  If you can't make the trip, the next best thing will be to purchase the book (only $35) and all proceeds will go to RAM.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Digs for Filigree & More!

We have been in the process of moving our mortar and bricks version of Filigree & More into a different portion of our space.  What a job!  I think all the work will be worth the effort.  We are expanding what we carry ... we just added Tim Holtz' Distress Powders.  We're adding new Nunn Design pieces.  We have lots of interesting new beads (as soon as I get them restrung to sell) -- who needs sleep!  We have acquired some wonderful displays from our friend Donna Stephens, who sadly has closed "On the Rocks".  Donna plans to continue her business at the local bead shows and to teach here at Creative Journey in the future.  Hopefully the new displays will make it easier for you to see what we carry in filigree and stampings.

The other big job we are working on is moving the "Polymer ... From the Beginning" exhibit to a spot in the front room as you walk in.  Amazing all the little details you don't think about when you embark on a project like this ... new name tags with the new logo, cleaning all the new glass shelves (ugh!), more IKEA to put together, reorganizing the collection.  Whew!

Of course, all the websites are in transition.  We are planning the year's classes ... lots of phone calls and lots of typing.  All good ... we wouldn't do it if we didn't love it! Who knows ... maybe one of these day we'll get to do some polymer!  I'm behind in my sanding!