Metal Clay Artist Magazine cover girl!! My "Sol omnia regit" pendant is on the cover of the magazine's newest issue. It's really hard to believe. I'm unbelievably honoured and thankful to the whole MCAM crew, especially to wonderful Jeannette Froese LeBlanc and Julia Rai. I knew that there would be my "Artist Profile" in this issue, but to the last moment I had no idea what was going to be on the cover. This was the best surprise ever :).
I was also surprised by this "Architect of Poland's Metal Clay Movement" cover tag line :D. I'm definitely not any architect of anything, but of course I feel very flattered :). Thank you! It's totally true though, that there are a lot of extremely talented metal clay artists here in Poland. Check Anna Fidecka, Ksenia Ścieszka, Marta Grzywna, Waldo Iłowiecki and many others (links on the right column). Really worth seeing.
And here is the pendant "without" the cover. It's made of fine silver (ACS), sterling silver and two golden labradorites. Labradorites are my favourite stones - I use them very frequently in my jewellery and have quite a big collection of rough specimens :). I just love how they play with light.
And here is a short story of this pendant :). Firstly I built general shape of the pendant. Then I added place for a stone. It was hold in place by four "sticks" which became bases I built trees on. I started to take photos exactly that moment, so I don't have any pics showing previous stages :(.
Each tree was built step by step, by adding and shaping thin coils of clay. I wanted the branches and roots of each tree to be connected with those of other trees.
You can see in this photo that at this stage I thought up the name for this pendant :) - "Sol omnia regit" which is "The Sun rules over everything" in Latin. I knew from the beginning that this pendant would be solar themed piece (it has a form of stylized solar cross after all), but I couldn't find the right name.
When the trees were ready I filed trunks a bit to give them more solid look. I also created a bark texture and strengthened up the whole construction with thick paste.
I made sure that all branches were well attached and back of the pendant covered everything that might catch on cloth (while being worn). I added bark texture to the trunks and slighlty smoothened the whole back with abrasive pad. I love the finish abrasive pads leave on greenware metal clay. I use them a lot.
Then I made a few dozen of tiny leaves and attached them to the trees. I generally love making tiny ornaments. Tiny leaves, tiny flowers, tiny berries, tiny-everything :). The pendant was ready for firing.
After firing I prepared bezels for two stones I wanted to use.
I soldered the bigger bezel to the center of the pendant and smaller one to a little circle I cut out of sterling silver sheet. Then I soldered a few jump rings to the smaller bezel cup and soldered the whole thing to the pendant.
Then I cleaned the pendant with flux residue remover, oxidized it, set both stones, polished it and the pendant was ready :).
As I mentioned above this pendant is a stylized solar cross - very old symbol used in many, many cultures. Four trees symbolize Nature ruled by the Sun - golden labradorite - which gives them energy to live and grow. Solar cross has four arms (in my version four trees) as there are two equinoxes and two solstices which form the whole solar year :).
Well... That's all I think :).
Did I mention that I'm SOOOO happy? :D
That's really all now ;).
P.S. I haven't seen the content of this newest Metal Clay Artist Magazine issue yet, but I've already heard it's SUPER hot :). I cannot wait to see it! :)