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September 2007

September 2007 Play Day Notes

Three members showed up for the September Play Day, where we snacked on goodies provided by our host, Penni Jo (thanks!), and learned all about photographing our work. Penni Jo showed us her photography set-up, where we snapped a few photos. We then moved to the computer to learn how to optimize those photos (and scans) using Photoshop. A very informative & enjoyable meeting!
In the business portion of our meeting, we discussed the following items:
* The National Polymer Clay Guild will be having its Synergy Conference in Baltimore, Maryland, February 21-23, 2008. Registration begins tomorrow. Angela handed out postcards to the attendees with additional information (more postcards will be available at the next meeting). Or you can find out more on their website.
* Penni Jo offered additional ideas for future meeting topics: how to make an Inro box, and how to do the torn paper technique. Anyone interested in demonstrating these techniques for the group? If so, give me a holler!
* Jane suggested we might consider holding the Play Days in a different section of town for the members who don’t live in the Moore/Norman area. Those in attendance agreed.
* Angela handed out some business cards she made up with guild information on them. These will also be available at the next meeting.
Thanks to Penni Jo for hosting a very enjoyable Play Day!

September Play Day: Photographing Your Work

September has 5 Saturdays, so that means it’s play day time! This month, we’ll be learning more about an important skill… how to best photograph your clay creations. Penni Jo Couch (check out her photos here!) has graciously offered her home for the play day meeting place, and she’s also offered to tell us a thing or two about photographing clay work — including things like scanning vs. photographing, and how to use your handy-dandy computer to tweak your images. Some of our members use light boxes for optimal photo lighting, so we’ll discuss those as well. It’ll be a pretty informal information-sharing time, so if you’ve got a favorite photo tip, we hope you’ll come and share it!
* When: Saturday, September 29, 2007, 2:00 – 5:00 p.m.
* Where: Penni Jo’s house (Moore, OK). Note: Address/directions have been sent out to our mailing list. If you’re interested in attending, but aren’t on the list, contact us.
* What to Bring:
* If you have something you’d like photographed, bring it & we’ll use it to practice with. Otherwise, you don’t need to bring anything. We won’t be doing any clay work at this meeting.
Hope to see you Saturday! And afterwards, I hope to see our Flickr pool filled with lots more clay photos!

September 2007 Meeting Notes

Six members and one guest attended the September meeting. We had a fun time making Artist Trading Cards (ATCs), with members trying various techniques — skinner blend backgrounds, transfers, rubber stamps with mica powders, molding, antiquing — and even a beach scene complete with sand & shells! April also shared a successful inkjet transfer she had done using JetprintPhoto Imaging & Photo (Matte) paper (available at Wal-Mart, $10.00 for 100 sheets). Thanks to everyone who attended. And a special thanks to Jeanne Rhea of Heart of Clay for sending along gorgeous sample ATCs for us to drool over!
When we finished playing, we discussed the following business items:
* Group Swap: We will hold a swap at the October 13th meeting for anyone who wants to swap ATCs. You may participate regardless of whether you attended the September meeting. To get an idea of the number of cards each person needs to make, please RSVP by September 22nd if you’re interested. We will be organizing this swap via our mailing list, so be sure to sign up for the list if you haven’t already.
* Other ATC Swaps:
* There’s a polymer clay tree-themed ATC swap listed on Swap-bot with a sign-up date of September 15th. This one is open to newbies, so it’s a good place to get your feet wet if you haven’t done a swap before. You might even consider incorporating one of your leaf canes from our June meeting.
* Looking for more swap action? Here’s a list of all of Swap-bot’s current ATC swaps.
* The group modified, then voted on, the points reward system. Here is the system we unanimously decided on:
* Members will earn 2 points for each book or video they donate to the guild library.
* Members will earn 4 points for each lesson they teach or co-teach.
* Members will earn 8 points for holding an office for a year.
* At the end of the year, points will be calculated. For members who’ve earned 11-20 points, their yearly dues will be discounted $2. For 21-30 points, dues will be discounted $4. And for 31+ points, dues will be discounted $8.
* We held our first drawing to start populating our guild library. The two winning books (which should be ordered in time for the next meeting) were:
* Faux Surfaces in Polymer Clay: 30 Techniques & Projects That Imitate Stones, Metals, Wood & More, by Irene Semanchuk Dean
* Polymer Clay Jewelry, by Debbie Jackson.
* We discussed holding a joint meeting with the Tulsa guild, probably next spring. We’ve been emailing them to start arranging something like this and will keep everyone posted.
* We discussed the schedule for the rest of the year, and decided we should not have the 5th Saturday Play Day that would normally be scheduled for December 29th, since most people will probably be out of town or otherwise busy with holiday festivities.
* We decided on plans for the next two meetings & discussed additional ideas for meeting topics. If you are willing to teach us one of the unassigned topics, please get in touch.
* September 29th Play Day – Photographing your Artwork – Penni Jo.
* October 13th – Halloween Project – Cassy (Deviled & Angel Eggs) & Angela (glow-in-the-dark clay)
* Covering Switch Plates – Penni Jo
* Extruders & Canes – April
* Christmas Projects
* Ink-jet Image Transfers
* Rubber Stamps & Clay
* Faux Techniques
* Beads & Bead-Making
We look forward to seeing everyone at our September 29th Play Day!

September Meeting: Polymer Clay Artist Trading Cards

Yellow Goat X-ing ATCSeptember is International Artist Trading Card (ATC) Month — and to celebrate, we’re making polymer clay ATCs at this month’s meeting. Angela Mabray will be teaching the group all the basics of these little works of art — including the rules you shouldn’t break, the etiquette you should follow if you swap them, and some ideas on how you can use transfers, texture & more to make unique ATCs from polymer clay.
Here’s the meeting details:
* When: Saturday, September 8, 2007, 2:00 – 5:00 p.m.
* Where: The new Hobby Lobby in Norman, 2417 W. Main, Norman, OK. (The classroom is up front, near the check stands. Go right after entering & it’s the first door on the right.)
* What to Bring:
* Clay: You won’t need much for each card (1 block of clay will make 2-3 cards). Bring any colors you want. Angela has personally had good luck with Premo for image transfers, so you might bring that brand if you’re interested in doing a transfer.
* Work Surface: Small tile(s) that you can create your projects on, then put directly in the oven.
* Pasta Machine or Brayer
* Tools, Embellishments, Etc.: A clay blade is the main tool you’ll *need* — bring whatever else you think you’ll want. Rubber stamps & texture sheets are great for texturing the cards. Embellishments could include paper, fabric, beads, metal — anything you want to imbed in your project or glue on afterwards. Feel free to print your own image transfers if you have an idea (& a printer/paper combination that works for transfers) — or Angela will have some images already printed for transfers.
Angela is the current president of our group. She blogs about crafts at CraftyGoat’s Notes and sells crafts at She also has a few of her ATCs posted in this Flickr photo set, if you want a sneak peek at some of the ATCs you’ll be seeing.