Workshops for Adults

Adult Learning Opportunities!

Register Early! Spaces are Limited!

Making Your Mark
Techniques for creating surface texture and design on polymer clay

Taught by Shelley Atwood

October 20 – 22, 2017
Friday: 5:00 – 7:00 p.m (Meet and Greet)
Saturday and Sunday: 9:00 a.m. – noon and 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Museum of the Big Bend Womack Education Room

In this class, you will learn to create surface treatments on polymer clay objects that are unique to you. Rather than buying ready made products that everyone else uses, you’ll learn to create designs using your own tools to express your creativity. You will make your own texture plates and create textures using simple tools, many of which you may already have. You’ll learn how to use acrylic and oil paints for interesting effects as well as liquid polymer clay for additional surface treatments. We will apply these techniques to making pendants and earrings. Basic polymer clay skills are required for this class. A fee of $150 will cover two days of instruction and the materials you’ll need during the class. Students need only bring their tools.
Fee: $150
Registration and Registration Fee must be received by October 6th.

Students should bring the following to class (required):

  • Pasta machine or clay conditioning machine which can make sheets of even thickness
  • Exacto knife
  • Ball Stylus tools at least two sizes between .5mm-5mm. More is better.
  • Needle tool
  • Tissue blade or clay cutting blade
  • Smooth work surface. A piece of glass or a ceramic tile would be great or your favorite transportable surface.
  • Speedball Lino tool with hollow handle containing carving tips or the equivalent
  • 4 small, inexpensive paintbrushes, 2 pointed, 2 flat

The following items are optional but might be useful to bring:

  • Brayer or acrylic rod
  • Self-healing cutting surface
  • Tube-type circle cutters of various tiny sizes
  • Extruder
  • Armorall
  • Tweezers
  • Rubber-tipped clay shaper tools
  • Sea shells and other aquatic forms
  • Bark
  • Rocks
  • Fossils
  • Twigs
  • Leaves
  • Quills
  • Teeth
  • Claws
  • Apron
  • Earring findings
  • Necklace cords
  • Kato Liquid polyclay
  • Fimo Liquid

Provided in the classroom (You don’t have to bring these items unless you just like using your own.):

  • Translucent Liquid Sculpey
  • Premo polymer clay
  • Paper towels
  • Paint palettes
  • Turpenoid
  • Oil paint
  • Acrylic paint
  • Alcohol inks
  • Convection oven
  • Toothpicks
  • Silk screens
  • Card stock for templates

Artist’s Statement
Before moving to Alpine in 2004, I used to have fantasies about what it would be like to live in the desert, to feel that connectedness to the earth that is such an intrinsic part of life out here, especially in the Big Bend. There is some kind of mystery in this wild land that evokes, oddly, the “free man in Paris” feeling.

In my art, I try to trigger that emotional/psychological connection to the earth found in the most ancient or primitive of cultures. I want my art to both celebrate and honor the earth. I primarily make jewelry and other small pieces from polymer clay and silver precious metal clay (PMC), using paint and various carving tools.

I like lots of texture and clear definition in my designs. My designs are derived from ethnic and paleo-archaic art, with strong pre-Columbian and tribal influences. There’s a sort of post-hippy era influence as well.

The creative process is a struggle for me, a struggle and a joy. The joy comes from watching a piece morph out of a blob of clay into the final product. Sometimes I know from the beginning what I’m going to do with a particular piece, but more often than not I just start playing around with different components, or start sketching. It’s a sensory process rather than conceptual, organic rather than structured. There’s a tension between the half-formed idea and any vision of the final product, and an inertial resistance to starting. I have to give up on the concept of the final product and immerse myself in the process. I think my art comes from hands rather than my brain.

Artist’s Bio
Shelley Atwood has been working with polymer clay since the mid ’90’s. After a beginner’s class in Houston, she searched for more information on the medium and found Nan Roche’s book, “The New Clay”. In the late 90’s, more information on polymer clay started to appear online. It was then that she discovered a class in the south of France conducted by the late Gwen Gibson. The sharing of ideas in this class prompted her to join the Houston Polymer Clay Guild (HPCG) upon her return. As a member of HPCG, Shelley coordinated with nationally known polymer clay artists to teach classes in Houston for the membership. After moving to Alpine in 2004, she began selling more of her work. In 2007, she joined CatchLight Art Gallery, a cooperatively operated gallery where she continues to show and sell her work today.

Registration and Registration Fee must be received by October 6th.

Contact Maggie Rumbelow at 432-837-8143 or at ude.s1506273695sorlu1506273695s@wol1506273695ebmur1506273695.eigg1506273695am1506273695 to reserve your place!

For more information or to register for any of these programs, contact Maggie Rumbelow at ude.s1506273695sorlu1506273695s@wol1506273695ebmur1506273695.eigg1506273695am1506273695 or call 432-837-8143