Sunday, May 30, 2010

Musings on Tonya Davidson's Master Muse Program

Tonya Davidson has assembled an amazing group of artists in her Master Muse program. A technique or material is featured in each of the challenges and her merry band of muses responds with some innovative designs- and a detailed tutorial on how to recreate each piece. So far there have been 18 challenges and  her international group of artists (Lora Hart, Kelly Russell, Angela Baudel-Crispin, Donna Penoyer, Barbara Becker Simon, and Ruth Baillie among others) have responded to the call.
The most recent set of challenges has inspired me to give resin a try. All these have used Susan Lenart Kazmer's Ice Resin. I've always been a bit put off by Susan's clown head and pencil stub designs, but looking at some of the other design elements she's created using resin, I've been intrigued, but not quite sure how to incorporate them into metal clay or polymer . Three of the Muses have answered that question for me.

Kelly Russell created a metal clay dragonfly trapped in "amber" using a box design in tinted resin.

Lora Hart created a metal clay speciman container brooch with an ice resin center that is an homage to medieval jewelery design

And Ruth Baillie's Hugh the Chameleon brooch in metal clay with tinted resin accents is whimsical.

One of the  things I love about the challenges is that several different artists all show their take on the same element  or process.  Ruth and Lora both did brooches with hand made findings - and each pin design was unique. And each artist gives some background to their design process, so you get a peek into how their creative juices flow and what inspires them.

So far the Muses have done clasps, steampunk stencilling, torch fired enamel, art clay copper and pmc together, and now ice resin.

The Master Muse website has brief summaries of each project and detailed tutorials are coming soon for purchase on Tonya's Wholelottawhimsy website, and I'm patiently waiting to buy my first (hopefully this week the first 3 tutes will be offered for sale). But in the meantime, I've got an idea for a metal clay and resin pendant, and going to  mix up a batch of ice resin this afternoon and give it a try.