Tuesday 7 March 2017

Roll with it.

My work obsessions tend to happen in short bursts of intensity, concentrating on one area of interest, before running out of creative steam and allowing the next obsession to surface and be indulged. I guess most creative people are like this, but I may be wrong.

This constantly changing focus is a good thing in my view, as hopefully, I never continue a creative idea to the point of staleness. I have a well developed self monitoring system in place that flags up half hearted effort, and alerts me when it becomes apparent that I am starting to just 'go through the motions'.
As I am doing this creative work largely for my own satisfaction I find it unsatisfactory to make things because I 'should' rather than because I want to.
(Yes, that is a kind of creative privilege in action if you like. If I was doing this for a living, (yeah, right) I would have to adapt somewhat. . .)

Not to say that I don't come back to a particular obsession after a while. That happens a lot, but by the time it comes round again, I have regained the spark of originality and refreshed the creative curiosity to tackle it again. Either that or I have forgotten how I did something and have to rediscover the hows and wherefores of that technique.

I obsess about textures, and produce textured beads for a while. Then maybe I get into image transfer and the ins and outs of that, then I might explore jewellery, such as cufflinks and earrings etc, any of which might involve textured or image transferred beads. I might switch my focus onto surface effects, like crackling and marbling etc. Anyway, you get the idea. Round and round I go ;-)

My most recent obsession is using simple, rough bead shapes and surface effects in such a way as to make them look like they have been made out of ceramic clay on a tiny wheel. . . I call them 'pot' beads. I posted a couple of pics of some earlier examples a couple of blog posts ago.

Obviously they aren't made on a wheel, tiny or otherwise. They are actually rolled. Not to give too much away, not that there is much to give away really, I roll balls of polymer clay between various 'things' to get the shape I want, then pierce a hole with a bead pin and play with surface effects, some before and some after baking. That's about it.

I really like them, but I'm probably coming to the stage of repeating myself in a less and less interesting way, so I think my next obsession is about to emerge. I wonder what it will be? I haven't made any buttons for ages, or 'shards'. . . hmmmm. . .
Jon x


  1. Pot beads - what an interesting idea.

    I never thought of looking at beads in that way - as if thrown on a potters wheel. My brother is a potter and watching him work fascinates me. I can really see what you mean by this when I think of his work.

    Interesting indeed Jon!

  2. Thanks. I'm just Following the Fascination you know ;-)

  3. Gorgeous new beads Jon! I gave them a shoutout on my blog this week. http://katersacres.com/items/wip/wip-wednesday-smorgasbord/

  4. Jon, I always look forward to your posts.It is amazing at some of the inspiring bead ideas you come up with. Really great. And I really enjoy your stories.
    I know what you mean by not feeling your age. I'm 72 and feel the same way. However I'm grateful for every day that I get one more chance to enjoy my life. Especially when I think of those people I grew up with who will never get that opportunity again. ENJOY the rest of your life and thank you for sharing part of it with us.

    1. Thanks Simon, Good advice, life is for enjoying ;-)