January Theme Challenge - Moon

This months Art Element theme was chosen by the wonderful and crazy talented Lindsay. This post will be short and sweet, I had so many ideas but so little time!

I decided that I wanted to make some earrings so I gathered some supplies and started playing. Never one for the easy route I decided that I wanted prong set herkimer diamonds on my earwigs for a bit of sparkle....

With silver moons, I had planed to use silver sheet with a hammered effect but did not have enough in the right size so I cut up a pair of silver three pence coins instead and then finished them off with a pair of mismatched moonstone nuggets.

 I wish I could catch the sparkle in the diamonds and the blue in the moonstone as they look really ethereal in the sunlight!

This was my attempt at a selfie while wearing them. I have not mastered selfies and have a small child that likes to get in every photo possible!
Thank you Lindsay for such an inspiring theme, I'm still hoping that I manage to make some of my other ideas!
Please join me in seeing what everyone else has created

Art Elements Crew:


November Theme challenge - Star

As always I can't believe how quickly the month goes! Novembers Art Elements Blog hop was hosted by the amazing Laney Mead and should have been an easy one, there is so much you can do with the theme stars but this month I struggled!
and as always I left everything to the last minute (hence the bad photos, there is NO day light at the moment, none! So these are indoor in poor lighting photos....)

To get myself started I went through my trust bead stash and found this lovely polymer star by Staci Louise Smith, I then riveted a lamp work head pin by our own amazing Jen Cameron through the hole and onto a star shaped backplate cut from copper and made a prong setting for a old shop token, I finished the hanging section with a stunning blue glittery lamp work headpin. I am still working on the necklace part of this one!

This next piece was supposed to be a charm for a bracelet, made from my silver (and even a little gold here) scrap box but I decided that I liked it as a small charm necklace, but it needs a silver chain.  

and lastly I made a pair of earrings, the stars here are actually fossil star crinoid that I pressed into polymer, baked and then moulded from silver metal clay, I then soldered little hoops on the back and made a pair of gold bead caps from scraps of gold and put it all together on a pair of by Earthshine Glass headpins.

 I really rather like these but oh my they are very hard to photo....

Thank you Laney for a great challenge and I do hope you will join me seeing what everyone else has created!


September Theme Challenge Reveal – Fairy

I love fairies! For me they are the epitome of magic, but I really struggled with creating something this month. It was not through lack of ideas, I had a wonderful old lantern that I was going to make into a fairy lantern....

This was a really grubby old find from a charity shop, I washed it up, cut out fairy silhouettes from black paper and stuck them inside the glass but it was not looking right so I had a meltdown and scrubbed it off!
I then had the idea that I would make a fairy themed book, like something from the tv series Grimm, but I could not even decide on a design! 
Or a fairy garden, with a house made the same way as I made those mini bird houses, but No!

See the issue I am struggling with is lack of desire to create, I get like this when ever I am sad, and my oldest has just moved out to go to Uni, which is great for her and an amazing opportunity but I am missing her like crazy and she's not able to come home until christmas which seems like a long time away and it is showing in my lack of creating!

But I decided last minute the best way to get out of this is to just to do it, just make something!
so I headed to the local art shop to see what was inspiring....

And ended up buying some more water colour paints, but these sparkle! I love sparkles, So with these in hand and not a clue what to do I turned to the book Creative Girl by Danielle Donaldson (I also have her The Art of Creative Watercolor but I found this one less intimidating as it is mixed media and I still don't have much of an idea how to work watercolours). 

Inspired by her tutu girl project I came up with this....

While it is not perfect I did learn ALOT from this piece like Daniel Smith Cascade Green is the best colour ever (well that and Schmincke Helio Turquoise), I throughly enjoy mixing up colours and you can not pencil over the shimmer paints as they have a PVC type consistency when dry, but they do look great!

Heres a bad lighting shot so you can see the sparkle in her wings! 
Thank you Caroline for pushing me out of a creative rut, and hopefully I will be able to create some of the other ideas I have had!
Please do join me exploring what the other participants have created....

Guest Artists


Art Elements Team 




July Art Elements Challenge

July's Art Elements Theme Challenge was chosen by our wonderful and talented Jen Cameron and was seed pods.
As soon as I learnt of the theme I started to collected all the different seed pods that I came across, but I had no idea what I was going to make and found it hard to get started.

I decided to try some thing easy to begin with and made this copper fold formed seed pod with Jen's beautiful lamp work head pins bursting out....

Then once I saw Claire's fantastic polymer clay tutorial on the Art Elements Blog I decided that I needed to try making some of those, I did not unfortunately get to Finnish these as I am very easily distracted and they need a few more coats of paint....

The polymer clay got me thinking, oh how about moulding tiny seed pods and recreating them in silver metal clay?!? 
I looked for the smallest I could get my hands on but with the best textures and heres what I came up with....

I started to add gems and beads to see what I could create with the metal clay pods but in the end they just looked much better on there own so I made them into simple earrings, the studs have a wonderful star type pattern.

Then I wanted to try some art work, I really like the idea of painting and drawing but always find it hard to get started! So on these ones I used parts of the seed pods and either stuck them on to the page or used them and some acrylic paint to print on the page, these were experiments and need a bit more work but as I was making the "helicopter" seed pod piece I was distracted by how much they looked like dragonfly wings so then I made this....

Not seed pods but seed pod inspired, I made a water cooler background (I had much too much  fun doing this and may have made 50 or so water colours splats) and used the helicopter pods and some acrylic paints to print the wings and drew a very simple dragonfly and added some more water colour, I rather like this one!

Thank you Jen for inspiring us all this month, I can't wait to see what everyone else has created...


May Art Elements Blog Hop - Tide Pools

Yet another month over in the blink of an eye!
May's theme was chosen by the wonderful and very talented Lesley Watt and was Tide Pools or Rock Pools as we call them over here.
When I think of rock pools I always think of sea anemones, I have never seen any in the wild, only ever in the sea life centre, but thats where my mind heads straight to.
While searching through my stash (as often I do while looking for inspiration) our wonderful Jen's Lampwork headpins kept screaming out "I look like a sea anemone caught in a water bubble what more do you want?" the original idea was a wide band ring with the head pin at the middle surrounded with silver rocks, but some how I got distracted and the idea transformed into a pendent....
I tend to be easily distracted! The main stone has a hole drilled through the centre and the headpin (which is set in a 9ct gold bezel) and "rocks" (which are all soldered together as one piece) have been set as you would set a stone on stone. The actual stone has then been set in a very thick sterling silver prong setting.
I then had another idea I wanted to make a rock pool, not an actual rock pool but a tiny little metal ring dish inspired by rock pools....

I started off by gathering some of my sea stones, shells and sea glass that had interesting patterns on it and then I added in a few tiny fossils (I'm thinking rock pool in the Jurassic Coast, in Devon a place that is on my bucket list to visit) I then made a fimo texture plate with these pieces and tested it on the fimo before breaking open the metal clay.

Unfortunately I have not gotten around to firing the metal clay pieces yet, but I did experiment more with the fimo pieces (why dose spell check keep correcting fimo to limo? what even is limo?) pieces and I was really pleased with how they came out....

These are the little cabs I had made, these have each had several layers of water colour paint and one of them has even had a layer of resin, which I plan to do to all of them, but I ran out as I used the last of my resin on my little ring dish....

I really love this piece and it turned out much better then I expected, again it is coloured with many layers of water colour paint that pooled into the recesses, a few coats of matt varnish and then a thick coat of resin.

I love how much it looks like ceramic and am planing to make a little metal stand for it, possibly out of a domed coin with three soldered rocks for legs! 
I had so much fun this month, Thank you Leslie for inspiring us! 

I hope you will all join me in hopping around the other blogs....


April Horse Theme Challenge Reveal

As always this month has flown by and yet again it is time for the Art Elements monthly Reveal. Our theme for April was chosen by our amazing Jenny and was horses. 
I must admit when I first found out the theme I thought.... oh this will be easy, I live right by Sandown Race Corse, I see horses all the time, inspiration is bound to strike!
So I went out and photoed everything horse related that I could find, I learnt all about the Shire Horses at Hampton Court.... 

"The Shire is a British breed of draught horse. It is usually blackbay, or grey. It is a tall breed, and Shires have at various times held world records both for the largest horse and for the tallest horse. 
Population numbers are still considered to be at critical levels by both the UK-based Rare Breeds Survival Trust and the US-based American Livestock Breeds Conservancy." Wikipedia

I had a vague idea that I would make a necklace with a shire horse (with it beautiful fluffy feet) standing tall above a nice sized cab set in a gold bezel with a horse shoe or a cart cut out of the backplate behind the stone, but I could not find the right stone in my collection and I really could not draw the horse small enough for a necklace but big enough to get all the detail in so I had to think again!
Ah, I know I thought... I will paint a unicorn, that will be easy and then I will have lots of time to work on some other ideas! WRONG! Oh my gosh, was I wrong....

So I found a site that shows how to draw a unicorn I drew out my outline and added some paint. Now I am not a painter, I very rarely paint and when I do it is just really playing around with colours but all of a sudden I was filled with confidence and just started throwing paint on to the canvas. At this point I decided that I needed some more colour so I just kept adding....

Then this happened! For me colour can make or break everything and I really broke this one, so I did what everyone who had invested HOURS into a painting that they hated would do and had a melt down and gessoed over the whole thing....

Then I made a mental list of all the things I hated and tried not to do them all again! Many, many, many hours later I had glued pieces of book pages/maps on, added lighter colours and less of them and even sanded down the paint in a few areas to add some distressing and texture....

It's no where near finished yet, there are still MANY more hours of painting and lots more layers that need to go into it but I am in a happy place in that I don't currently want to throw it out of the window!

I really like the colours and love the map pieces and the texture on the moon, now I just need to be brave enough to add the shading and decided what is going on with the rest of the piece. Did I mention I don't like painting!!!!

Thank you Jenny for this months challenge, I really stepped out of my comfort zone and I can't wait to see what everyone else has created....

Here is the list of participants:
 AE Team Members:

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