Category Archives: mosaic

Empty well?

Empty well today?  Maybe it’s a chronic condition and you say I’m suffering from artist’s block. Writers get away with that quite easily, but artists? We see life in color so the well is easily filled again. Here are some things I do to fill my artistic well:

MAKE CRAFTS

I’m grateful that I enjoy making stuff with my hands. As a kid I learned to sew, knit, and crochet, but these days I mostly create polymer clay embellished boxes and inspirational frames.

polymer clay mosaicI love the meditative quality of crafts. I don’t have to think too much, just make the tiles and paint them. They usually come together easily once I design the box lid or frame.

polymer clay mosaicI also make handmade art journals, which are SO MUCH FUN! I can get real sloppy with inks and paints.

art journalI sell the crafts on etsy in my EARTH AND FAERY shop and they are quite popular. That is a side bonus that also inspires me to make more.

To get back to art making as in painting and art journaling, I come back with a fresh eye after a few days of craft making. My other major inspiration is:

NATURE

If you live in the boonies you are surrounded by nature, but if you live in an urban area like I do, it’s hard to get outside and be surrounded by trees. I live by a park, and that was a choice I made. Pretty much every day I go to the park, and the energy fills me up.

There is something so healing about nature, and it also balances you. Just as you make a commitment to join a gym, you can make a commitment to spend time in nature every week. Look at it as self-care.

YouTube

There are so many tutorials on YouTube you could spend a lifetime getting inspired by other people’s art. Half an hour here and there works wonders. I also love to look at art by the old masters. A trip to an art museum or gallery can be inspiring.

EXERCISE!

Many dread that word, but exercise is essential for well-being on all levels. I find it to be the fastest way to clear out the cobwebs and get the ball rolling. Once it’s rolling, it keeps going.  Exercising and park visits go hand in hand…

ART PARTY

Every month I get together with a couple of artsy friends and we have an art party. We take turns to host it. We make art, talk, and eat a great lunch. It’s truly refreshing and inspiring. I usually end up working in my art journal. Doodling is one way of expressing art while deep into a discussion.

TAKE A NAP

When all fails, take a short nap! You wake up with fresh eyes. 🙂

If none of these things appeal to you, well, come up with your own regimen for creative self-care. Then the well will always be filled.

Creating art is not always easy, but don’t blame it on “artist’s block.”

Have a creative weekend. (Those are the best kind.)

xo

Maria

I thought I would be bored

I thought I would be bored in the long run making polymer clay mosaics. Ever since I came across Laurie Mika’s book Mixed Media Mosaics I have been hooked. That was years ago and I still make them.

polymer clay mosaic
Polymer clay tiles

Check out that cute elephant. I pretty much use dragonfly charms for the center tile, but I’ve had this special charm for a while.

I used to do stained glass mosaics on tables and such, but that is very fiddly and I wasn’t really into beautifying furniture for life.

My main gig is painting, but I have a strong streak of “craftiness” and I find it soothing to plug away at crafty things, namely mosaics. Though I also make some handmade journals for those who don’t know how to start art journaling. Starting with a painted page is easier.

To go back to mosaics, my You Tube video on how to paint polymer clay tiles have gotten more views by far than any of my other videos. Lots of people into polymer clay these days, and that’s great!

If you haven’t seen the video, here is the link.

It’s really not that hard once you get the hang of it.  The variations are endless.

follow your heart
polymer clay mosaic wall plaque

I like to add some inspiring words to the art. People should be reminded to follow their dreams. Otherwise, life is pretty much wasted in my opinion. We all need something inspiring in this day and age….

mermaid
Believe in magic

If you’d like to find out more about making polymer clay mosaics like these, I have an e-course where you would make a box (similar to the one above) from beginning to finish. I show you every step of the progress.  The course is ONLY $23! Check it out.

Back to painting now! Wishing you a creative and happy weekend.

Lots of love,

Maria

P.S. You can check out the journals and other things in my etsy shop Earth and Faery.

 

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Polymer clay mosaic tutorial.

People have been asking me about more polymer clay mosaic tutorials.

I have posted before on how to paint the baked tiles, and there is a YouTube video on how to paint them as well.  CLICK HERE.

Here are some pictures on how to put the mosaic together with the finished tiles. Since this is a star box I had to fiddle with and cut some of the tiles, which is tricky since they break pretty easily.  It’s much easier to make a square or rectangular design.

polymer clay mosaic tiles
painted tiles ready to be assembled
star box lid
Box top painted black

I paint the lids black to hide any gaps between the tiles. If the gap is too big I place some glue and drop some seed beads to fill the gap.

layout
layout, one tile at a time
finished design
Tiles fitted and glued down

Here you can see some blue seed beads in the top two corners. The tiles were too big to cut for size.  Seed beads are great and they lend some sparkle to the project as well. Choose a color that matches the main color(s) of your design.

painting the box
Painting the box

I painted the box on the outside with acrylic paints.

gold interior
spray painted interior

I spray paint the bottom and the interior with gold paint before I paint the rest.

finished box
finished box

What do you think? Pretty colorful. I had fun making this, and so many others.

I made a mirror that promotes PEACE!  I thought that was a worthy thing to be reminded of while looking into a mirror.  Peace begins within and it’s a choice. I even had a Buddha charm I embedded in the clay and baked.

peace mirror
Peace mirror

The mirror part distracts from the frame in the bright outdoors, but there it is. Polymer clay is so versatile you can make almost any design.

I use old buttons, rubber stamps, charms, found objects, and lettering to imprint the tiles. You can use anything that makes a nice imprint.

If you enjoyed the tutorial, please leave a comment.

Please visit my new etsy shop, Earth and Faery.

Have a great creative week!

xo

Maria

Painting polymer clay mosaic tiles.

I made a YouTube video today on how to paint polymer clay mosaic tiles.  A few days ago I posted a picture tutorial on how to put the tiles onto a frame so that is another post you can check out for more information on the polymer clay mosaics.

DSCN2161
polymer clay mosaic tiles on a wood frame.

They are a lot of fun to make and they look rich and colorful with three layers of paint. The last layer is embossing powder.

Where there are gaps between tiles I use seed beads or black polymer clay “rods” covered with gold leaf as fillers. That makes the art work extra shiny and rich. You can’t add too much bling to this type of art work.

You can use any color combination, but I’m partial to blues, teals, purple, and reds.  As you experiment you’ll come up with your favorites.

Here is the video.