2015 Saul Bell Design Award Finalists-Metal Clay Category: PART 5 of 5

Monday’s are not all bad!  Let’s start off the week with something really good.  Holly Gage is a never ending river of good things! As a teacher, mentor and motivational speaker she has touched many lives. She has been a supporter of Metal Clay Artist Magazine before our first issue came out! I think we chatted at the Art Clay Conference about magazines in 2009. Over the years she has had images in the gallery and she has contributed articles. Maybe some of you remember this piece from an MCAM gallery? Below is our fifth interview with the Saul Bell Award finalists in the metal clay category.
holly_gage_natures_renewal Continue reading…

2015 Saul Bell Design Award Finalists-Metal Clay Category: PART 4 of 5

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“Gentle Hands” bracelet Janet Alexander made for a charity auction to benefit “HEAL” helpendabuseforlife.org.

Untitled-1I have admired Janet Alexander’s work for many years. She has contributed articles to Metal Clay Artist Magazine and she took part in a very special charity bracelet project two years ago. We featured her bracelet on the cover. Her innovative design is a match of beautiful imagery of the mountains in her area, the helping hands of the charity she was spotlighting, along with the complexity of a hidden link system. Knowing her work, I was not surprised to hear that she is a finalist for the Saul Bell Design Award!

Creative Fire: How long have you worked in metal clay?
Janet Alexander: I had been introduced to metal clay in 1999 but then started working in metal clay in 2009. Continue reading…

2015 Saul Bell Design Award Finalists-Metal Clay Category: PART 3 of 5

Our third interview is with Terry Kovalcik from the USA. Terry’s locket “A Tear for Icarus” (2005) was the first piece that caught my eye and made me really look at metal clay. As you can see by Terry’s finalist piece for the Saul Bell Design Award, his attention to detail and excellent craftsmanship have not wavered at all.

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A Tear for Icarus (2005)

Creative Fire: How long have you worked in metal clay? Is there one kind of metal clay that is your favorite? 
Terry Kovalcik: I was first introduced to Precious Metal Clay in 1999 and have worked with it ever since. So that makes it 16 years. As for a favorite, it’s hard to say, I do find myself using the 960 hybrid PMC clay a lot lately. My approach is to pick the best clay for the job. PMC 960 works well for many different techniques, it’s strong and versatile. Continue reading…

2015 Saul Bell Design Award Finalists-Metal Clay Category: PART 2 of 5

The second finalist in the metal clay category to be interviewed is Anna Mazoń  from Poland. We fell in love with her work and profiled her in Metal Clay Artist Magazine in 2012 as “an architect of Poland’s Metal Clay movement.” There are many fabulous Polish metal clay artists, but one who really stands out for her work is Anna Mazoń.

closeupCreative Fire: How long have you worked in metal clay? Do you have a favorite? Do you have any favorite tools for metal clay?
Anna Mazoń: I started working with metal clay in 2008, so it’s been almost 7 years – time flies. Since then I tried really a lot of different metal clays, from different brands and the more I try, the more I am tempted to say, that it really doesn’t matter what you use. The only thing that matters is your talent and perseverance. Continue reading…

2015 Saul Bell Design Award Finalists-Metal Clay Category: PART 1 of 5

Recently one of our favourite jewellery supply companies announced the finalists for in their annual design contest.  The 15th Annual Saul Bell Design award, sponsored by Rio Grande, is named after the father of one of the owners of the company.  If you are not familiar with the contest or Saul Bell, here is a lovely video explaining the history of the contest and a short biography of its namesake.

The mandate of the contest is clear, “We’re looking for an original vision, a fresh take on traditional methods and materials and a mastery of your craft. We want you to stretch the boundaries of your capabilities as a designer and as a jeweler.” (For more information about the contest and the judging please see their website.)  Every year fellow artists enjoy seeing the finalists and guessing as to who is the winner.  This year is no different, and so over the next few days we’ll present a brief selection of Q&A’s to the finalists in the metal clay category along with an image of their piece.

First up, we interview two time winner, Ivy Solomon.  Yes that’s right–she has won twice in the metal clay category.

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2004 Saul Bell Design Award First Place-Metal Clay Category- Ivy Solomon.

Continue reading…