Friday, June 29, 2012

My First Bird Polymer Clay Cane




Last Friday I shared my first buttons in polymer clay.  This week I’m sharing my first bird cane in polymer clay.
For those of you who do not know what a ‘cane’ is in polymer clay, it is a long roll of clay that has other colors and patterns in it.  When you make slices from the end, the same pattern appears with each cut.  Look at last Friday’s post for better pictures.
I decided to make a bird we have locally, the Black-headed Grosbeak who lives in our pine-oak forests.   I had those colors of clay and I like him.  He has a short stout beak for seed cracking and is butterscotch and black with some white. 
I traced a picture of the bird, made a copy to put under my glass workspace and found my clay colors – butterscotch, black, white and tan.  The limb is copper and gray.  The body was first, then the head and last the wings.  I put green around and all this sounds so much easier than it was and took longer too!   I made a short cane and ended up with 3 somewhat even cuts that I put on black clay circles.  It was difficult enough to make a cane the size I did.  If I want more birds cut, I’ll have to make longer canes.  Anyone have any tips I could use? 


I find it difficult to slice 1”+ discs and get them even.  Any tips from anyone out there?
Practice will undoubtedly help.  Yesterday I started to make this bird and ended up with lots of waste clay in a ball.  Today I took a calmer different tack and was more successful.  I’ll get better!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Windows and Doors and Job Hunting



A friend of mine is looking for a new job.  I imagine all of us have friends or maybe ourselves looking for jobs.  After having coffee with her, I thought about the many times I started over due to a store closing or downsizing or moving.  I was reminded of my photos of windows and doors. 






Windows have so many shapes and sizes and so many things on the other side.  They remind me of opportunities, dreams, and stories.  I can always make up stories about what I could do or what someone else has done or should do.  For me windows are the possibilities. 



Doors on the other hand require action.  Do I want to go through that one?  Am I prepared for what is on the other side?  Can I walk out again?  What if I pick the wrong one?   What if someone closes it and won’t let me in? 
Job hunting was always a little scary, unsettling, depressing, overwhelming and discouraging.  It was also an exciting adventurous time.  It was a time of opportunity and growing.   I had to think differently.  I got to look at myself and acknowledge all my skills and talents and figure out who needed me…whether they knew it or not!  I also realized that I needed new skills to fit into a new market.  I had to make changes and take action!  I had to open a door.  Sometimes one would open without a lot of effort on my part.  And many times it was not that easy. 
The other important thing I learned was to surround myself with friends who were positive.   I could be negative without help!  It was always good to hear someone say, ‘You are so good at doing …..” and knowing they cared.
I’ve learned that listening and being supportive are the some of the best ways to help my friend.  It’s good for me too!




Friday, June 22, 2012

My First Polymer Clay Buttons

If you’ve been following me, you know I like to work in many mediums and learn new techniques.  So when I bought Donna Kato’s book, The Polymer Clay Millefiore Techniques, I knew I’d be making canes! http://www.amazon.com/The-Polymer-Clay-Millefiori-Techniques/dp/0823099180/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1340064070&sr=1-1&keywords=Donna+Kato.  I also took several classes online with craftclass.  www.craftclass.com 
One day I was playing around on Facebook and joined a group of polymer clay addicts!  ‘Just Polymer Clay Tutorials’ where artists post tutorials about polymer clay for free and for pay.  I’ve downloaded several, watched a few and was sure I could do any of it!  I understood the concept.
A friend and I took a trip to a quilt shop. She quilts – I don’t!  I wore my new brass/polymer bangles https://www.etsy.com/listing/102355695/classy-bangles and that got me some attention and started a conversation!  The owner showed me the polymer clay buttons that she buys from Albuquerque and said, ‘It would be nice to have a local source!’   You see where this is going don’t you?
My friend had just made me a quilted tote for my birthday and I decided to make a button that matched the fabric.  As I worked on this first button project, my ‘I can do anything attitude’ became….’I can figure this out!’
I mixed my clay to be the color I thought would come out butterscotch.   After adding the surrounding colors, I remembered a lesson in color mixing.  The color changes depending on the adjacent colors
Stages of getting the right color!
Lesson two – Putting warm clay in the refrigerator helps keep a shape.  I worked with the clay long enough to get it mushy.  So much for the nice pointed ends on the long oval shape. 
Colors I used in the button

Finally I made the center cane and liked the colors and shape.  The white background sheet of clay was ready for me to start placing the designs.  I started in the center and worked my way out to each side.  Yeah! It looked good until I realized that I had not added the white around the center cane.  After experimenting and much to do, I finished it and baked it.  I must say I am happy with it. 
Lesson three – Tutorials are there for a reason…practice.  Like anything else, good quality work requires practice.  I’ll be working through some tutorials and small projects to develop my skills!
Lesson four– Matching the fabric exactly may mean that the button disappears!  In this case it does not because the stripes do not line up.  Next time, I will take a design element from the fabric and enlarge it.  After all, I want my buttons to be noticed!
Not ready for button sales but I’ll get there! 
Finished buttons and fabric

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The End of the Utah- Arizona Summer Vacation

Our last stops were the national monuments of Wupatki and Sunset Crater.  Besides just enjoying saying the name ‘Wupatki’ we really enjoyed seeing this pueblo and the exhibits. 
Wupatki is north of Flagstaff, Arizona in the shadow of Sunset Crater.  Today occasional earthquake tremors still get residents attention.  The remains of the pueblos in this area are from the 1100’s when the people banded together to build a farming community.  Sunset Crater’s eruption left a thin coat of ash that enriched the soil by absorbing moisture and preventing evaporation.  By 1180 thousands of people were farming here.  By 1250 the buildings stood empty and the people had moved on.  Some resettled in areas close by and their descendants still live in the area. 

Artist's concept of the original pueblo

Ruins Today

I found the techniques of building with rock interesting.  There was a variety of natural color, shapes, textures and craftsmanship.
The rock work combined the sandstone and the lava.
Rocks stacked neatly.  Many foundations gave a good sense of the room sizes.
The pueblos are in amazingly good condition.  It was really windy when we were there especially at the large pueblo at the visitor center.  We took all the short hikes to the many remains and got some pictures of beautiful collared lizards and a better understanding of the lives of the early puebloans. 
Beautiful Collared Lizard just checking me out!
The Sunset Crater became a national monument because in 1928 filmmakers wanted to create a landslide at the crater.  Lots of people were concerned about the possible irreversible damage to this area and pushed for protection. 
Sunset Crater from Wupatki
In 1930, President Hoover made it a national monument.  The mountain is now closed to climbers.  The black lava is eerily fascinating.
This was a great trip and I hope you enjoyed it too! 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Starting a Collection of Fasteners

If you are like me, you have boxes of things that you just might need one day.  When I’m making something that looks good but isn’t what I want right then, it goes into one of those boxes.  And yes those boxes are organized with the hope that I will remember to look in them.   We jewelry artists work with tiny parts and I still wonder how to organize, catalog and remember to look.  Maybe part of the creative process is the surprise of finding one of the pieces.

I just finished a necklace and did not like any of the clasps I had in my fastener box.  I took out my wire and made one.  I did not think it looked like the necklace either.  So I made another and another and finally made one I really liked.  Into the ‘fastener box’ went the ones that were not perfect for this project.  I realized that I was starting a collection of my handmade fasteners.  I have brass, bronze, copper and silver.  I think I need to make a piece of jewelry starting with the clasp!  Just sharing…..





Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Navajo National Monument

The Navajo National Monument was a magical place for me.  It was small as monuments and campgrounds go. We drove around to get our bearings and to see what we wanted to do the next morning.  We talked with the rangers and decided to take an early morning walk on Sandal Trail.
 Both campgrounds had open spaces for camping and on this trip that was unusual and welcome.  We arrived early evening and were able to take a short walk.  There were beautiful blooming bushes, a few birds and sunset! 




After making ‘camp’ in the back of the truck and setting out dinner, I even had time to sit and enjoy the sounds and smells of the forest.
Sandal Trail is a paved trail from the visitor center that ends at Betatakin Overlook.  I stood looking out at a breathtaking cross-canyon vista and then looking down at what is left of an ancient village framed by a sandstone arch while time stood still.  I could almost see the children playing on the upper ledge; hear the women weaving and preparing meals.  I could imagine the hunter/gatherers following trails along the river. 
Cross-Canyon Vista
Ancient Puebloans lived here from about 1250 to 1300.  This location was undoubtedly chosen for the community because it is so well protected and was deep enough for the approximately 135 rooms.  The sandstone kept the heat in the winter and cooled the area in the summer making it pleasant for a people who spent most of their time outside.   There are three cliff dwellings that survive in the monument today. 
Looking down from the Betatakin Overlook

The Ruins - imagine the amount of activity at one time


Friday, June 8, 2012

Helen’s Copper Thumb Ring

A couple of months ago my friend, Helen, asked me to make her a ring for her thumb out of copper.  She’s been having joint pain and thought maybe the copper against her skin would help relieve it.  Of course, I said ‘Sure’!  I came home and thought about how to make a ring that would fit or could be adjusted to fit.  And the copper really needed to touch the joint.  And Helen lives 200 miles away so there would be no ‘fitting’.
I cut paper and played with a design that would wrap around the thumb and not get in the way of daily chores.  I came up with this design. 
During one of my practice sessions with my jeweler’s saw, I decided how to cut it and how to decorate it.  I practiced.
The copper sheet I chose for the final ring came from my junk yard treasures.  It has striations on it and the plastic protection coating was still on one side.  I carefully sawed on my scribe lines and filed and sanded all the edges.  Then I used my disc cutter to make the random circles. 
I shaped it on the ring mandrel, tested it on my thumb, reshaped it and work hardened it.  Then I wore it for a day and now I’m ready to ship it to her. 
This was a simple design where I used my tools and new knowledge to create a gift for a very good friend.  I’m hoping she will like it too!







Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Monument Valley – A Study of Rock Formations

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is located in Arizona and Utah and covers 91,696 acres.  It’s a place where you can almost feel time stand still and peace envelop you.  The large and varied rock formations were formed by erosion and range from 100 ft to 1500 ft tall.  Many of the formations have been given names – Elephant Butte, Camel Butte, The Three Sisters, Totem Pole and more.

Camel Butte (Can you see him?)

Tourism is big business here.  “The View” is a beautiful new hotel and every room has a view of the monuments.  We saw more rental RV’s than we could count.  And well over half the visitors were from other countries. 
I was most interested in seeing the rock formations, the striations and faces of the rocks, the light and shadow as the sun moved across the sky. 









The colors and textures made me want to get clay out and model while I observed the changes.   I have no doubt that this experience will have a major impact on my future jewelry designs in shapes and textures.





Friday, June 1, 2012

Finding Zen in the Jeweler’s Saw

First Exercise in the Class
Craftcast with Alison Lee is a really great online source for classes mostly about jewelry making.  I find myself signing up for almost all of them because they are so well done.  When the class ‘Zen and the Art of the Jeweler’s Saw’ with Michael David Sturlin was offered, I waited to take it.  I thought, ‘ok, I have a jeweler’s saw and I’ve used it and so why take a class?’  http://www.craftcast.com/
I’m going to Art Unraveled in Phoenix in August and I’m taking three classes in metal jewelry techniques.  Every one of them lists the jeweler’s saw as a necessary tool.   I got my saw out and tried it. ‘Hmmmmm’  I thought, ‘guess it is time to take the class’. There are recordings of the classes you can buy if you miss the live class and boy am I glad I signed up! http://www.artunraveled.com/
First of all my workspace is too low for correct posture and for keeping the saw vertical.  As you can see in the photo, Peter solved my problem.  He made a strong square arch that can be clamped to the worksurface and the bench pin can be clamped to the top.
Raising the Bench Pin to the Correct Height
The height for the bench pin is now 8 inches above the desk surface and I can sit in my chair with my feet on the floor and focus on the saw blade.
Pretty Close to the Correct Position for the Jeweler's Saw
 Unfortunately just focusing on the saw blade is not enough!  I’m supposed to let the saw blade do the work so that I get into a groove and find the ‘zen’ of it all.  That sounds good and will be my goal.  In the meantime, the blade gets stuck or I don’t keep the saw vertical or the blade breaks and any number of things happen to prevent my ‘zen’ from staying.  I know with practice I will improve.  And you can bet I’ll be practicing the exercises Michael gave in the class so I can look like I know what I’m doing by August in Art Unraveled classes!

I just had to share my first finished exercise.  Actually the saw blade did not break until I finished this.  Yea! 





Friday, June 29, 2012

My First Bird Polymer Clay Cane




Last Friday I shared my first buttons in polymer clay.  This week I’m sharing my first bird cane in polymer clay.
For those of you who do not know what a ‘cane’ is in polymer clay, it is a long roll of clay that has other colors and patterns in it.  When you make slices from the end, the same pattern appears with each cut.  Look at last Friday’s post for better pictures.
I decided to make a bird we have locally, the Black-headed Grosbeak who lives in our pine-oak forests.   I had those colors of clay and I like him.  He has a short stout beak for seed cracking and is butterscotch and black with some white. 
I traced a picture of the bird, made a copy to put under my glass workspace and found my clay colors – butterscotch, black, white and tan.  The limb is copper and gray.  The body was first, then the head and last the wings.  I put green around and all this sounds so much easier than it was and took longer too!   I made a short cane and ended up with 3 somewhat even cuts that I put on black clay circles.  It was difficult enough to make a cane the size I did.  If I want more birds cut, I’ll have to make longer canes.  Anyone have any tips I could use? 


I find it difficult to slice 1”+ discs and get them even.  Any tips from anyone out there?
Practice will undoubtedly help.  Yesterday I started to make this bird and ended up with lots of waste clay in a ball.  Today I took a calmer different tack and was more successful.  I’ll get better!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Windows and Doors and Job Hunting



A friend of mine is looking for a new job.  I imagine all of us have friends or maybe ourselves looking for jobs.  After having coffee with her, I thought about the many times I started over due to a store closing or downsizing or moving.  I was reminded of my photos of windows and doors. 






Windows have so many shapes and sizes and so many things on the other side.  They remind me of opportunities, dreams, and stories.  I can always make up stories about what I could do or what someone else has done or should do.  For me windows are the possibilities. 



Doors on the other hand require action.  Do I want to go through that one?  Am I prepared for what is on the other side?  Can I walk out again?  What if I pick the wrong one?   What if someone closes it and won’t let me in? 
Job hunting was always a little scary, unsettling, depressing, overwhelming and discouraging.  It was also an exciting adventurous time.  It was a time of opportunity and growing.   I had to think differently.  I got to look at myself and acknowledge all my skills and talents and figure out who needed me…whether they knew it or not!  I also realized that I needed new skills to fit into a new market.  I had to make changes and take action!  I had to open a door.  Sometimes one would open without a lot of effort on my part.  And many times it was not that easy. 
The other important thing I learned was to surround myself with friends who were positive.   I could be negative without help!  It was always good to hear someone say, ‘You are so good at doing …..” and knowing they cared.
I’ve learned that listening and being supportive are the some of the best ways to help my friend.  It’s good for me too!




Friday, June 22, 2012

My First Polymer Clay Buttons

If you’ve been following me, you know I like to work in many mediums and learn new techniques.  So when I bought Donna Kato’s book, The Polymer Clay Millefiore Techniques, I knew I’d be making canes! http://www.amazon.com/The-Polymer-Clay-Millefiori-Techniques/dp/0823099180/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1340064070&sr=1-1&keywords=Donna+Kato.  I also took several classes online with craftclass.  www.craftclass.com 
One day I was playing around on Facebook and joined a group of polymer clay addicts!  ‘Just Polymer Clay Tutorials’ where artists post tutorials about polymer clay for free and for pay.  I’ve downloaded several, watched a few and was sure I could do any of it!  I understood the concept.
A friend and I took a trip to a quilt shop. She quilts – I don’t!  I wore my new brass/polymer bangles https://www.etsy.com/listing/102355695/classy-bangles and that got me some attention and started a conversation!  The owner showed me the polymer clay buttons that she buys from Albuquerque and said, ‘It would be nice to have a local source!’   You see where this is going don’t you?
My friend had just made me a quilted tote for my birthday and I decided to make a button that matched the fabric.  As I worked on this first button project, my ‘I can do anything attitude’ became….’I can figure this out!’
I mixed my clay to be the color I thought would come out butterscotch.   After adding the surrounding colors, I remembered a lesson in color mixing.  The color changes depending on the adjacent colors
Stages of getting the right color!
Lesson two – Putting warm clay in the refrigerator helps keep a shape.  I worked with the clay long enough to get it mushy.  So much for the nice pointed ends on the long oval shape. 
Colors I used in the button

Finally I made the center cane and liked the colors and shape.  The white background sheet of clay was ready for me to start placing the designs.  I started in the center and worked my way out to each side.  Yeah! It looked good until I realized that I had not added the white around the center cane.  After experimenting and much to do, I finished it and baked it.  I must say I am happy with it. 
Lesson three – Tutorials are there for a reason…practice.  Like anything else, good quality work requires practice.  I’ll be working through some tutorials and small projects to develop my skills!
Lesson four– Matching the fabric exactly may mean that the button disappears!  In this case it does not because the stripes do not line up.  Next time, I will take a design element from the fabric and enlarge it.  After all, I want my buttons to be noticed!
Not ready for button sales but I’ll get there! 
Finished buttons and fabric

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The End of the Utah- Arizona Summer Vacation

Our last stops were the national monuments of Wupatki and Sunset Crater.  Besides just enjoying saying the name ‘Wupatki’ we really enjoyed seeing this pueblo and the exhibits. 
Wupatki is north of Flagstaff, Arizona in the shadow of Sunset Crater.  Today occasional earthquake tremors still get residents attention.  The remains of the pueblos in this area are from the 1100’s when the people banded together to build a farming community.  Sunset Crater’s eruption left a thin coat of ash that enriched the soil by absorbing moisture and preventing evaporation.  By 1180 thousands of people were farming here.  By 1250 the buildings stood empty and the people had moved on.  Some resettled in areas close by and their descendants still live in the area. 

Artist's concept of the original pueblo

Ruins Today

I found the techniques of building with rock interesting.  There was a variety of natural color, shapes, textures and craftsmanship.
The rock work combined the sandstone and the lava.
Rocks stacked neatly.  Many foundations gave a good sense of the room sizes.
The pueblos are in amazingly good condition.  It was really windy when we were there especially at the large pueblo at the visitor center.  We took all the short hikes to the many remains and got some pictures of beautiful collared lizards and a better understanding of the lives of the early puebloans. 
Beautiful Collared Lizard just checking me out!
The Sunset Crater became a national monument because in 1928 filmmakers wanted to create a landslide at the crater.  Lots of people were concerned about the possible irreversible damage to this area and pushed for protection. 
Sunset Crater from Wupatki
In 1930, President Hoover made it a national monument.  The mountain is now closed to climbers.  The black lava is eerily fascinating.
This was a great trip and I hope you enjoyed it too! 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Starting a Collection of Fasteners

If you are like me, you have boxes of things that you just might need one day.  When I’m making something that looks good but isn’t what I want right then, it goes into one of those boxes.  And yes those boxes are organized with the hope that I will remember to look in them.   We jewelry artists work with tiny parts and I still wonder how to organize, catalog and remember to look.  Maybe part of the creative process is the surprise of finding one of the pieces.

I just finished a necklace and did not like any of the clasps I had in my fastener box.  I took out my wire and made one.  I did not think it looked like the necklace either.  So I made another and another and finally made one I really liked.  Into the ‘fastener box’ went the ones that were not perfect for this project.  I realized that I was starting a collection of my handmade fasteners.  I have brass, bronze, copper and silver.  I think I need to make a piece of jewelry starting with the clasp!  Just sharing…..





Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Navajo National Monument

The Navajo National Monument was a magical place for me.  It was small as monuments and campgrounds go. We drove around to get our bearings and to see what we wanted to do the next morning.  We talked with the rangers and decided to take an early morning walk on Sandal Trail.
 Both campgrounds had open spaces for camping and on this trip that was unusual and welcome.  We arrived early evening and were able to take a short walk.  There were beautiful blooming bushes, a few birds and sunset! 




After making ‘camp’ in the back of the truck and setting out dinner, I even had time to sit and enjoy the sounds and smells of the forest.
Sandal Trail is a paved trail from the visitor center that ends at Betatakin Overlook.  I stood looking out at a breathtaking cross-canyon vista and then looking down at what is left of an ancient village framed by a sandstone arch while time stood still.  I could almost see the children playing on the upper ledge; hear the women weaving and preparing meals.  I could imagine the hunter/gatherers following trails along the river. 
Cross-Canyon Vista
Ancient Puebloans lived here from about 1250 to 1300.  This location was undoubtedly chosen for the community because it is so well protected and was deep enough for the approximately 135 rooms.  The sandstone kept the heat in the winter and cooled the area in the summer making it pleasant for a people who spent most of their time outside.   There are three cliff dwellings that survive in the monument today. 
Looking down from the Betatakin Overlook

The Ruins - imagine the amount of activity at one time


Friday, June 8, 2012

Helen’s Copper Thumb Ring

A couple of months ago my friend, Helen, asked me to make her a ring for her thumb out of copper.  She’s been having joint pain and thought maybe the copper against her skin would help relieve it.  Of course, I said ‘Sure’!  I came home and thought about how to make a ring that would fit or could be adjusted to fit.  And the copper really needed to touch the joint.  And Helen lives 200 miles away so there would be no ‘fitting’.
I cut paper and played with a design that would wrap around the thumb and not get in the way of daily chores.  I came up with this design. 
During one of my practice sessions with my jeweler’s saw, I decided how to cut it and how to decorate it.  I practiced.
The copper sheet I chose for the final ring came from my junk yard treasures.  It has striations on it and the plastic protection coating was still on one side.  I carefully sawed on my scribe lines and filed and sanded all the edges.  Then I used my disc cutter to make the random circles. 
I shaped it on the ring mandrel, tested it on my thumb, reshaped it and work hardened it.  Then I wore it for a day and now I’m ready to ship it to her. 
This was a simple design where I used my tools and new knowledge to create a gift for a very good friend.  I’m hoping she will like it too!







Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Monument Valley – A Study of Rock Formations

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is located in Arizona and Utah and covers 91,696 acres.  It’s a place where you can almost feel time stand still and peace envelop you.  The large and varied rock formations were formed by erosion and range from 100 ft to 1500 ft tall.  Many of the formations have been given names – Elephant Butte, Camel Butte, The Three Sisters, Totem Pole and more.

Camel Butte (Can you see him?)

Tourism is big business here.  “The View” is a beautiful new hotel and every room has a view of the monuments.  We saw more rental RV’s than we could count.  And well over half the visitors were from other countries. 
I was most interested in seeing the rock formations, the striations and faces of the rocks, the light and shadow as the sun moved across the sky. 









The colors and textures made me want to get clay out and model while I observed the changes.   I have no doubt that this experience will have a major impact on my future jewelry designs in shapes and textures.





Friday, June 1, 2012

Finding Zen in the Jeweler’s Saw

First Exercise in the Class
Craftcast with Alison Lee is a really great online source for classes mostly about jewelry making.  I find myself signing up for almost all of them because they are so well done.  When the class ‘Zen and the Art of the Jeweler’s Saw’ with Michael David Sturlin was offered, I waited to take it.  I thought, ‘ok, I have a jeweler’s saw and I’ve used it and so why take a class?’  http://www.craftcast.com/
I’m going to Art Unraveled in Phoenix in August and I’m taking three classes in metal jewelry techniques.  Every one of them lists the jeweler’s saw as a necessary tool.   I got my saw out and tried it. ‘Hmmmmm’  I thought, ‘guess it is time to take the class’. There are recordings of the classes you can buy if you miss the live class and boy am I glad I signed up! http://www.artunraveled.com/
First of all my workspace is too low for correct posture and for keeping the saw vertical.  As you can see in the photo, Peter solved my problem.  He made a strong square arch that can be clamped to the worksurface and the bench pin can be clamped to the top.
Raising the Bench Pin to the Correct Height
The height for the bench pin is now 8 inches above the desk surface and I can sit in my chair with my feet on the floor and focus on the saw blade.
Pretty Close to the Correct Position for the Jeweler's Saw
 Unfortunately just focusing on the saw blade is not enough!  I’m supposed to let the saw blade do the work so that I get into a groove and find the ‘zen’ of it all.  That sounds good and will be my goal.  In the meantime, the blade gets stuck or I don’t keep the saw vertical or the blade breaks and any number of things happen to prevent my ‘zen’ from staying.  I know with practice I will improve.  And you can bet I’ll be practicing the exercises Michael gave in the class so I can look like I know what I’m doing by August in Art Unraveled classes!

I just had to share my first finished exercise.  Actually the saw blade did not break until I finished this.  Yea!