Tuesday, March 3, 2015

March Monthly Challenge

Haida Totems, 1912
By Emily Carr
Watercolor on Paper
76mm x 55mm
BC Archives, Canada

About the Art
In 1912, with some fanfare in the Vancouver press, Emily set off alone on a momentous six-week trip, going through Alert Bay, to the Tsimshian villages of the coast of northern mainland British Columbia, to the Gitxsan villages in the interior, and ultimately to the even more remote settlements of the Haida people on an archipelago then called the Queen Charlotte Islands, now known as Haida Gwaii.

"There were many fine totem poles in Cha-atl — Haida poles, tragic and fierce. The wood of them was bleached out, but looked green from the mosses which grew in the chinks, and the tufts of grass on the heads of the figures stuck up like coarse hair. The human faces carved on the totem poles were stern and grim, the animal faces fierce and strong; supernatural things were pictured on the poles too. Everything about Cha-atl was so vast and deep you shrivelled up."

The art chronicles of her journey were made using pencil and watercolor. Her art took on bright hues and bold brushstrokes of the Fauvist paintings she saw in Paris in 1910.

About the Artist
Emily Carr was born December 13, 1871 in Victoria, British Columbia. She moved to San Francisco in 1890 to study art after the death of her parents. In 1899 she travelled to England to deepen her studies, where she spent time at the Westminster School of Art in London and at various studio schools in Cornwall, Bushey, Hertfordshire, and elsewhere. In 1910, she spent a year studying art at the Académie Colarossi in Paris and elsewhere in France before moving back to British Columbia permanently the following year.
She lived in France in 1910 where the work of the Fauves influenced the colourism of her work and she came into contact with Frances Hodgkins. Discouraged by her lack of artistic success, she returned to Victoria where she came close to giving up art altogether.
Carr was most heavily influenced by the landscape and First Nations cultures of British Columbia, and Alaska. Having visited a mission school beside the Nuu-chah-nulth community of Ucluelet in 1898, in 1908 she was inspired by a visit to Skagway and began to paint the totem poles of the coastal Kwakwaka’wakw, Haida, Tsimshian, Tlingit and other communities, in an attempt to record and learn from as many as possible. In 1913 she was obliged by financial considerations to return permanently to Victoria after a few years in Vancouver, both of which towns were, at that time, conservative artistically. Influenced by styles such as post impressionism and Fauvism, her work was alien to those around her and remained unknown to and unrecognized by the greater art world for many years. For more than a decade she worked as a potter, dog breeder and boarding house landlady, having given up on her artistic career.
However, her contact with the Group of Seven in 1930 resurrected her interest in art. A unique Canadian genre and cadre of artists entirely unknown to her, notably the Group of Seven. She met Arthur Lismer, A.Y. Jackson and Lawren Harris. Harris was to have a profound influence and their friendship endured for the rest of her life.
Throughout the 1930s she specialized in scenes from the lives and rituals of Native Americans. She also showed her awareness of Canadian native culture through a number of works representing the British Columbian rainforest. She lived among the native Americans to research her subjects. Many of her Expressionistic paintings represent totem poles and other artefacts of Indian culture.
She died March 2, 1945 and is interred in the Ross Bay Cemetery in Victoria.

Our Sponsors
Our Sponsors this month are Studio Marcy, Hollowlogy and Areto.
Please visit us tomorrow to see the prizes!

How to enter the Monthly Challenge:
1. You need to have a Pinterest account. Go get one ASAP if you don't have one already. It's easy, fun and inspiring.

2. Email us at absmonthlychallenge@gmail.com to get added to the monthly challenge board.

Subject: Monthly Challenge Board Request

You will be emailed an invite to the board within 48 hours. Accept the invite and you are ready to pin your entries.

3. Two ways to pin your entry to the board.

Pin your photo from the internet (on your blog, Etsy shop, etc.)

Add your photo directly from your computer

Create something using an art bead that fits within our monthly theme. We post the art to be used as your inspiration to create. This challenge is open to jewelry-makers, fiber artists, collage artist, etc. The art bead can be created by you or someone else. The challenge is to inspire those who use art beads and to see all the different ways art beads can be incorporated into your handiwork.

An Art Bead must be used in your piece to qualify for the monthly challenge.

***Beads strung on a chain, by themselves and beads simply added to wire or cord will not be accepted.***

Please add the tag or title MAR ABS to your photos. Include a short description, who created the art beads and a link to your blog, if you have one.

Deadline is March 31st. 
You may upload 2 entries per month.

• Beads Makers Pinterest Board-Art beads must be created by you and fit the Art Bead Scene's monthly challenge theme. They can be made for the challenge or ones you have made before. 2 entries per month are allowed. 
One entry will be picked by the editors on the 28th of each month for a free month of advertising on the Art Bead Scene. Bead entries have to be pinned by the 27th of the month.
Beads only - do not post jewelry on this board. If a post doesn't fit the challenge it will be deleted.

Monthly Challenge Recap
• Please post at least one single shot of your creation on the Pinterest Board. This will be used to make a collage for the Monthly Challenge Gallery. Every creation will be added to the collage, regardless of a blog post. So everyone gets included!

Your entry must be on Pinterest 2 days BEFORE the recap to be included.

• Be sure to share with us the name of the art bead artist in the description of your photo so that if you are selected for the weekly Perfect Pairings on Wednesdays, both you as the designer and the art bead artist can get the credit you both deserve!

• An InLinkz button will be added to the bottom of the Monthly Challenge Recap post. Here you will be able to link up your blog post if you have one. It is no longer necessary to add your blog post URL to the description unless you want to. Be sure to hop around and see all the great inspiration and leave some comment love!

• The Monthly Challenge Recap with Blog Tour will be posted on January 30th.

Monthly Challenge Winners
• One prize winner will be selected at random from all pictures posted on the Pinterest board.

• One prize winner will be selected at random from all blog posts added to the hop for the Monthly Challenge Recap post. So if you want to be in the pool for the second prize, be sure to use the InLinkz code at the bottom of the post to share your process and inspirations!

• Winners will be randomly chosen from all the qualifying entries on February 1st.

Perfect Pairings :: Designer + Art Bead Artist
• Formerly the Featured Designer of the Week, our new Perfect Pairings will focus on both the jewelry designer and the art bead artist. 

• Be sure to point out all the art bead artists in your work in the description of the photo on the Pinterest Board. Links to their website or shop are appreciated. That way we can all find new art beads to love!

• From all the entries during the month, an editor will pick their favorite design to be featured every Wednesday here on ABS, so get those entries in soon.

What is an Art Bead?
An art bead is a bead, charm, button or finding made by an independent artist. Art beads are the vision and handiwork of an individual artist. You can read more about art beads here.

***A bead that is handmade is not necessarily an art bead. Hill Tribe Silver, Kazuri ceramic beads or lampwork beads made in factories are examples of handmade beads that are not considered art beads.

Beaded beads, stamped metal pendants or wire-wrapped components are not considered art beads for our challenge.***

Monday, March 2, 2015

February Monthly Challenge Winners

Congratulations to the February Monthly Challenge winners! 
2 winners were chosen randomly from all the challenge entrants.
1 winner was chosen randomly from the InLinkz blog entries.
Winner of a month of advertising on ABS from the Monthly Challenge Bead category.
Our First lucky winner is Stephanie LaRosa.
She has won a $50 Gift Certificate from Earthbutter Beads.
Our Second lucky winner is Sarah Raines.
She has won a $50 Gift Certificate from Big Bead Little Bead.
Our Third lucky winner is Terry Gauthier.
She has won a $50 Jewelry Componentes from Earthenwood Studio.
Our winner from the Bead entries of the Monthly Challenge is Melody McGready/Cherryhill Studio 
She has won a Month of Advertising here on Art Bead Scene.

     Earthbutter Beads              Big Bead Little Bead             Earthenwood Studio   
Thank you Earthbutter Beads, Big Bead Little Bead and Earthenwood Studio for being our February Monthly Challenge sponsors!

Winners, please E-Mail Taritari@claybuttons.com with your information (Name and address) so your prizes may be sent to you.
A Big THANK YOU to everyone who entered this month using "Amapolis" by Edward Detmold, as your inspiration. 
We were so fortunate to have so many beautiful entries and experience such creativity from our wonderful readers.
Visit us tomorrow to see what March's challenge brings.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

February Monthly Recap

The poppies in this painting by Edward Detmold are so luxurious, don't you think? The perfect image to celebrate deep and abiding love in February with an eye toward the approaching spring. (It is coming, right?)

We had a lot of marvelous entries this month focusing the deep color, the poppy form and even the moth/butterflies. Let's see what you created...

Just click the picture above to start. Best viewed in full screen mode.
Art Bead Scene - February 2015 by Slidely Slideshow
If that doesn't work, please try this link: http://slide.ly/view/3449165798dd2395e83864ea9921c88e


Your turn!
Click the InLinz Link-up below to add your blog post to the hop!
Please add your exact URL to the blog hop for the
February 2015 Art Bead Scene Monthly Challenge Recap.
An InLinkz Link-up

Get the InLinkz code for you blog:

Friday, February 27, 2015

Inside the Studio with Humblebeads

Each week one of our contributors gives you a sneak peek into their studio, creative process or inspirations. We ask a related question of our readers and hope you'll leave comments! As an incentive we offer a free prize each week to bribe you to use that keyboard. The following week we choose a random winner.

Alice of Alice Dreaming is this week's winner of a surprise bead bundle from Claire Lockwood of Something to do Beads.

Welcome to the Humblebeads Studio...

2015 has been crazy for me, I've been going from deadline to deadline, event to event. In between, I've been in my studio working away on orders and new beads. It's a challenge to find time to develop new ideas and my creative process definitely goes in cycles. 

Sometimes my creativity focuses on revisiting and updating designs that I have loved from the past like these fun poppy pendants. 

Most of these ended up in the gift bags for my 2015 Bead Cruise that just passed. I paired them up with some yummy sari silk ribbons that matched the poppies. Bead Cruise? Oh yes, a week of beads, beaches, friends and fun. I'm working on the details for 2016 right now! 

My next inspirations were from pics I snapped on the islands. Who can pass up the beauty of the tropical flora on an island? 

I will be working these into new beads this week to take to an event next weekend, spreading some color and island inspirations in the snowy tundra!
My favorite part of the cruise - teaching! Nothing makes me happier than inspiring students. I taught my Metal Sketches class and the Hibiscus Pendant, it's always a joy to see students wearing their projects and experimenting with new ideas.

I'll be teaching both these classes in Baltimore next weekend with the Baltimore Bead Society. If you are in the area, I'd love to have you join us. They just have a few spaces left, it's going to be a fun weekend. (Details can be found here.) I will also be presenting on Promoting Your Jewelry Business Online at their monthly meeting on March 10th.

So that's what's going on in my studio, making beads, putting together kits, working on lots of behind the scene's kind of projects.

And now it's time for the question of the week:
What kind of a jewelry class would you take if you could make a wish with a magical beady genie?

Share with me for a chance to win a $25 gift certificate from www.humblebeads.com. We'll pick a random winner next Friday from the comments. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Art Bead Palette :: JoyMunshower

Periwinkle Reticulated Octopus

I've had Joy Munshower's Etsy shop bookmarked for ages, and I had to share at least one of her pieces for the sheer artistry. Isn't that lampwork bead exquisite? The details are just incredible, and when I realize it's glass - I'm blown away, how about you?

These are one of those beads that I'd probably never use, but collect and frame instead. Talk about a little piece of art!

To see more, stop by Joy's shop.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Perfect Pairings :: SJ Designs + Tanya McGuire

 I love the soft simplicity of this design. The way that Miss Sarajo purposely placed the lampwork poppy off-center... the framing effect of the textured brass washer... the playful butterflies dangling down. This one is a real winner!
I also love that Miss Sarajo was extra inspired and shows two other pieces of jewelry perfect for this month's inspiration!

Featured Designer :: SJ Designs

Featured Bead Artist :: Tanya McGuire

P.S. Hurry... the deadline to get your creations into the Pinterest boards for inclusion in the recap post scheduled for Saturday, February 28th is... this TOMORROW! Let's see what you made! ;-)

Just a friendly reminder... We have a slightly new format for uploading your pictures for consideration for the Perfect Pairings each Wednesday, as well as the Monthly Challenge Recap post. We are now using Pinterest! You can find more details in this post about the exciting new changes, including a board devoted to art beads inspired by the monthly challenge! (Ooh! Look! More pretty beads to lust after!)
Pretty please make sure that you post a link in your Pinterest description so that I have someplace to attribute the picture to! And don't forget to tell us about those art beads!
Deadline to get your pictures posted to the Pinterest boards for the creation of the Monthly Challenge Recap post is Thursday, February 26th!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Book Review: Free Form Peyote Stitch Book Roundup

With the publication of Karen Williams' new book Explorations in Free Form Peyote Beading, I am excited to see that freeform peyote stitch is getting on people's radar.  It is wonderful that  more and more folks are taking up beading with seed beads. To me, freeform peyote, is the ultimate fun and the greatest design generator of all the seed beading techniques out there.  So I am very excited about this new volume in  freeform peyote beading because it is going to make this beading format available to many more people.   For years there was a dearth of information on freeform peyote stitch.  I remember back in the late 90's when I was smitten with a freeform peyote stitch necklace I saw in Bead and Button magazine, that I had a hard time finding any information on how to make  one.  Finally I found the self published booklet by Jeannette Cook titled A Sculptural Peyote Projects Primer, and ordered a copy. It had originally been published in 1996 and was later revised in 2001.  It is a wonderful book and taught me all I  needed to know to start making those great cuffs and  necklaces.  But it only had pictures on the front and back covers.

 I still refer to this slim bible on freeform despite its black and white beading path illustrations because I find it to be very simple to understand and those few illustrations very inspiring.

                     Back cover of A Sculptural Peyote Projects Primer by Jeannette Cook

In 2000, Interweave Press published Beading with Peyote Stitch written by Jeannette Cook and Vicki Starr. Although most of this book is about flat, even and odd count, and tubular peyote, and sculptural peyote, there are some sections that cover freeform,  And there are many color illustrations.  This book has been a staple for many years for anyone wanting to learn peyote stitch beading techniques.

After the publication of the Interweave book,  it seemed freeform languished for a number of years until Karen Williams revitalized the scene with her book Freeform Peyote Beading in 2010.  Her 2010 book was full of color photos, beading diagrams and lots of information on design and color.  Karen filled a huge gap in the freeform beading knowledge base with this book

    One of my favorite techniques that I learned from Karen Williams is how to integrate the button and clasp loop into the bracelet as seen in the picture below of one of my bracelets.

And now, we have Karen Williams' newest book, Explorations in Freeform Beading, which continues the adventure and delves even deeper into being creative with freeform peyote stitch.  Not only is this a great resource and inspiration for anyone interested in freeform, it is a testament to the power of self publishing.  Karen set up a Kickstarter campaign to get this book up and running and was very successful at gathering the necessary funds and community support.  And equally important, she had the skills and the stamina to see this project through in the short year that she allowed herself to get it ready.  It is now available on Amazon and in her Etsy shop.  And most recently, she has gotten the ebook version off the ground!
 One of the significant differences between Karen Williams' two books is the inclusion of work by other bead artists in this one.  In fact, she gives in depth coverage to several so that you are learning how different artists create using free form peyote stitch.  Many of the roadblocks that discourage beaders new to peyote stitch are  addressed, especially the "ugly duckling stage" that most projects go through, and how to incorporate large stones, bead over found objects and more.
The other main difference is the attention paid to more advance freeform beading techniques making the book a valuable resource for beaders of all skill levels.
If you have an interest in advancing your freeform skills, or want to begin on a new adventure in freeform this book will teach and inspire you for many years to come. I hope you will check it out at your local bookstore, library, or favorite internet shop.