December Challenge - Faux Mokume Gane
Welcome to the Polymer Clay Artists Guild of Etsy's December challenge. Our theme this month is "Faux Mokume Gane."
Mokume gane is an ancient Japanese metalsmithing technique which artists in other mediums, including polymer clay, have adapted. The term Mokume gane literally means woodgrain metal or eye of the wood metal, and refers to the elaborate woodgrain patterns which can be created with the technique.
There are many ways to achieve the look of mokume gane in clay. The traditional method is to stack different colors of clay and/or translucent clay and foils, compress the stack, emboss it with a patterned texture sheet, then shave horizontally the raised areas of the stack to reveal the different colors and patterns. It requires a light, but steady hand. If you shave too deeply, you will ruin the pattern. If the cut is too shallow, you won't reveal all of the color bands.
Some artists stack the colored layers and then use a ripple blade to slice vertically, revealing wavy patterns in the clay.
Each entry must be at least 50% polymer clay.
Please vote for your top 3 favorites in the pull-down menu at the bottom of the page. Depending on the speed of your internet connection, it may take a few minutes to load.
Voting begins December 1, 2010 and ends at midnight Eastern U.S. time on December 7, 2010. Winners will be announced here on December 8, 2010 and at www.pcagoe.com.
Please note each voter is allowed one vote. A vote consists of choosing a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winner. Please do not choose one entry for all three places. If you vote for the same entry for 1st, 2nd and 3rd, your 2nd and 3rd place votes will be discarded.
Winning public voters will be notified as soon as practicable after the time to vote closes. If you do not respond within one week, your prize will be returned to the pool as unclaimed.
You may also sign up for our monthly newsletter when you vote.
Our members love to hear your comments about the entries. Please take a moment to complete that section when you vote. We also love to hear how you learned about the challenges.
DECEMBER CHALLENGE ENTRIES:
1) Special Earrings Circle in Purple by BeadElz
Els' description of her entry: These earrings are a special design. I was looking for a replacement for metal hooks because of the allergic reactions. The nylon cord inspired me to design these funny, modern looking earrings. The fun is that you can use any color or shape, small and big. The nylon cord goes through the ear and behind the ear back through the metal tube.
2) Beautiful Blues Long Pendant Necklace by HiGirls
Lisa's description of her entry: Long necklace with brass chain using mokume gane technique in polymer clay. Achieved by stacking many layers of clay, distressing, then shaving the stack. I used the shavings over a base piece of clay, the entire thing molded in a handmade floral shaped mold.
3) Mokume Gane Christmas Ornament by PolymerClayCreations
Angela's description for her entry: This ornament was made in the mokume gane technique using red, green and pearl metallic clays. Along with transparent and black. There are also several layers of copper metal leaf. It was stamped with an intricate design and then carefully shaved away. It was sanded in several grits of wet/dry and sandpaper and then buffed to a shine.
4) Autumn Heart Pendant by ReignbowDesigns
Connie's description of her entry: This autumn heart is filled with the colors of changing leaves, red, brown, green and gold with layer upon layer in the mokume gane technique
5) Asian Wine Bottle Stopper by YoungCreative
Marie's description of her entry: This wine bottle stopper features the "Mokume Gane" technique. Thin layers of chocolate brown and gold clay and gold foil with translucent clay added to the indentations to form the pattern. Reverse side has a hand-stamped Asian coin
6) Desert Nightrise by Phoenix Rose
Suzen's description of her entry: This may be my favorite piece. It is a mokume gane necklace on a satin cord with Czech glass, brass and mokume gane beads to match the pendant. The pendant is mokume gane turquoise, blue, orange and black layered and pressed through a pasta machine at the lowest setting then stamped and carved, layered, and finished with gold dust.
7) Space Oddity by RiverValleyDesign
Christi's description of her entry: This pendant was made using a texture plate I made. The texture plate is quite unusual, big holes all the way through, and lots of texture. I mixed up some custom colors with piles of scrap clay and stacked it to create my block. Smooshed the texture plate into it, and started slicing away! This was one of the pieces I sliced off. Mokume gane is a wonderful polymer technique. It has always been one of my favorites.
8) Bracelet with Handmade Polymer Beads by CraftsByCAG
Carola's description of her entry:
9) Copper & Bronze Asymmetrical Necklace No. 117 by 11BoldStreet
Susan's description of her entry: For the PCAGOE December Challenge "Mokume Gane" I chose this neckpiece. I love the whorls on the focal piece, which almost look like metallic fingerprints, but are slices taken from a block of polymer which was layered, deformed and reshaped multiple times. I then rolled some of those slices like jelly-rolls, and took slices from them. The accent beads were formed from the same stock and the pieces were married with multi-strands of complementing seed, glass, copper and Czech glass beads.
10) Mokume Gane Star Ornament by MirameCreations
Lupe's description of her entry: This Christmas ornament was created by me using a Mokume gane cane and foils. China glass and crystals were added for some bling.
11) Sky Blue Pink by PipsJewellery
Pippa's description of her entry: These beads were created by making a stack of layers of tinted translucent clay with silver leaf. The stack was distorted and then thin shavings were sliced from the top of the stack. Love this technique!
12) Desk Set in Shades of Pinks by NKDesigns
Linda's description of her entry: This is my challenge entry for December in the technique known as Mokume Gane. It is done in dark and light pinks with silver leafing. This desk set would make a great gift for your secretary, your assistant or perhaps yourself. The little box can hold paper clips, binder clips, erasers, and many other office supplies. The rose was hand-formed and I highlighted the edges of the petals with white Pearlex. There is a matching pen to complete the set. There is no additional finish on the box nor the pen, just sanded and buffed to a soft luster.
13) Moonlight K by PolyClarific
Amanda's description of her entry: This is my mokume gane letter K keyring. I love the pearly blue that shows through underneath. Such a fun technique to use!
14) Red Mokume Gane Ornament by WiredOrchid
Lorraine's description of her entry: This tropical ornament is my entry for the PCAGOE December Challenge: Mokume Gane. I used custom blended peach, white, alizarin red and copper polymer clays, a stamp with a large leaf design and an ornament shape cookie cutter. Happy Holidays from South Florida!
15) Bouru Vase Necklace by TheSageArts
Sage's description of her entry: Mokume Gane 'rainbow jade' bowl vase on antique copper chain.
16) The Morning Sun by Peggers
Peggy's description of her entry: Inspired by the first rays of sun in the summer mornings. The dew on the leaves create a rainbow effect when the sun hits it just right. I used a rainbow of metallics to create this Mokume Gane. I added a fluttering butterfly to this rainbow.
17) A Marriage of Metals Pendant by SCDiva
Lynda's description of her entry: This pendant is the focal component in a necklace of the same name. It is part of my "Ancient Romance" series. All the pieces in the collection were created from metallic clays. For this pendant, I stacked thin layers of rich bronze and pewter polymer clay, which I compressed and stamped with a diamond patterned texture sheet, then shaved with a flexible blade to reveal the layers underneath and manipulated the sheet to exaggerate the shapes. I stippled it to add a little texture and antiqued it with a dark bronze acrylic paint before curing, then sanded and buffed it with 8 grits of wet-dry sandpaper to bring out the shine.
18) Mokume Gane Pendant by ElPasoClayNation
Kathy's description of her entry: I made this pendent by layering solid colors and metallic gold Kato clays. I placed balls of clay beneath the layers and shaved them.
19) Cranberry Rivers by AshPaints
Arlene's description of her entry: This necklace was made to match a sweater I recently purchased that had some beautiful colors - a rich red running all the way from bright to the cranberry color in the name, then various shades of purple and green. I custom mixed the colors to match and stacked multiple layers along with gold leaf then impressed different shapes in to create the "rivers" of different colors.
20) Jingle Kringle Bangle and Earrings by ArrowdaleArtStudio
Cindy's description of her entry: This bracelet/earring combo set was made from discs of wood cut from the rare, priceless Arborvita Kriskringlesia, known for it's fascinating cross-grain show of the amazing colors of red, white & green. When cut, edges show silver, making for beautiful jewelry pieces! The loose discs at the bottom are included to show the variations of pattern achieved. I layered red, white and green clay with silver leaf, then poked and pushed and manipulated the stack to create striation patterns resembling wood grain. I then rolled it thin, cut 1" circles and cured them, then painted each edge with a leafing pen before stringing the discs with silver jingle bells on clear elastic cord. For the earrings, after the pieces were strung together, I glued them into the shape you see, then drilled more holes to insert jump rings and the fish hook earring wires, all of Sterling silver.
21) Carnival Perfume Pen in Pink with Blue Teardrops and Yellow Triangles by RenGalSA
Deb's description of her entry: This is my entry in the December PCAGOE challenge. It has a pink mokume gane background made from various shades of pink mixed with translucent clay, ink dyed translucent, and silver foil over a white background. It is accented with teardrops and triangles from striped millefiori canes.
22) Mokume Gane Elegance by MarciaPalmer
Marcia's description of her entry: Mokume Gane has always been one of my favorite polymer clay techniques. There are quite a few variations of this Japanese metal working technique that have been adapted to polymer clay. This challenge gave our members a chance to highlight several of those techniques. Check out all of our fabulous entries.
Many of the entries are available in the member's Etsy shop. Click on the member's name or the title link to check any entry you are interested in purchasing.
Five (5) lucky winners chosen at random will also receive one of the prizes shown in the prize mosaic below, all of which were created by our very talented members.
DECEMBER PRIZE MOSAIC:
1st row, L-R: ArrowdaleArtStudio, BeadElz, PipsJewellery, CreateMyWorld
2nd row, L-R: RozPetalzStudio, MarciaPalmer, AlisonEKurek, HiGirls
3rd row, L-R: PolymerClayCreations, ThePleasantPheasant, JKollmann, DebbieCrothers
Thank you again for your votes, and for supporting the Polymer Clay Artists Guild of Etsy. We hope you will join us again next month. The theme for January is "3 Color Combo." We hope to have many beautiful entries to inspire and delight you.
I apologize for not ever finishing our vacation reporting - not sure what the deal is but at least I got this post up! Hopefully I'll get back on track now.