This week the studio has been hopping! I’m busy and happy!

My hand still hurts, but I don’t care … I can’t stay away from the mosaic fun for too long. It’s important for me to have something going at all times no matter what.

Update on the custom order: First of all, I decided to give up trying to add inches to the gazing balls with cement. That was a big decision and one I gave in to easily. I have enjoyed the complete experience of learning what to do, how to do it, became even more creative than I ever thought I could be and discovered how wonderful people can be when you need to bounce off ideas or brainstorm with them.

Plan C: After noticing that not much changed in measurement after adding lots of plaster cast strips and cement to the 6, 7, 8 and 10 inch balls I’ve got here, it was a no-brainer. I could start with 12 inch spheres and not have to worry about making them too large. My original thought as many of you may remember when I started with this, was to build up a small foam ball making it easy to get the size just right. I wasn’t wrong and it could still work if I had more time but I wasn’t thinking about how long that process actually takes. Never doing it before in this way, I really had no clue. I have learned so much! What a ride this has been!

spheres ranging in sizes of 6, 7, 8 and 10 inches

Spending weeks doing the plaster cast strips and cement combo to the sizes I have, yielded a little more than a few inches. That was after many, many, MANY layers of plaster and cement. That’s a good thing, I knew, because that means if the price was right, I had enough left in the budget to get something in that 12 inch size, cover them with a layer each in plaster cast strips and thinset so that I could get to the next part. Woo!!

Before too much more time goes by, I wanted to mention that I got the plaster cast strips from a medical supply company. For $20+ shipping/handling I got a dozen packages of 3 inch plaster strips. Those who use these strips a lot should definitely go here to buy them instead of getting the other brand at craft stores. orthotape.com

I’ve got to say, I’m lucky to have such a large online support system. Because I do, when I share my photos or concerns about what I’m struggling with when I’m working, often I’ll get a large group of like-minded folks offering suggestions or giving me advice. I LOVE the internet for this very reason. The person that hit on the best idea was Heidi.  Heidi, an online friend from Austria http://www.naturallymosaics.com/ does some really cool mosaics that are hanging in museums. I have one of her mosaic gems in storage that she surprised me with last year … how lucky am I?! When I mentioned I was on a limited budget but had these balls made, many folks pitched in offering advice and ideas. Heidi and a few others took quite a bit of time in thought to help me figure this all out. How cool is that?! People all over the US and on the other side of the ocean, helped me. That’s kinda more than a little awesome.

Heidi’s suggestion was to get 12 inch beach balls and take it from there. Thanks to Heidi, who reminded me of the website I had already bookmarked long ago, I found exactly what I wanted at a price I could afford at S&S Worldwide. http://www.ssww.com/

As I wait for the delivery of the beach balls, I’m cutting up mirror and getting these pieces in sealant. This sealant, called mirror edge sealant, will protect the mirror after I cut it from getting black spots once grouted. I was looking at the pieces of mirror today and honestly, I’m not sure I have enough mirror for all 10 balls. For now, I’m doing what I can to get triangles made up and ready to go. It’s a meditative process and is always fun for me. Once I cover a few of these gazing balls I’ll know how much mirror it’ll take. Hopefully I’ll be able to find what I’m looking for when the time comes. That’s always a bit of a challenge.

Once this custom order is finished, I will get started on the smaller spheres I have here. I want to list a few on Etsy but also keep a few to show future potential customers. I think if I could find a mold to pour concrete into and make the sphere that way, it would work really well. I’ll have to investigate that.

Etsy Shop News: And speaking of Etsy … my shop will be up and running again in a few weeks. Keep an eye out for the official announcement on that. I’m aiming for October 1st.

Donations: Two new donation pieces are being made to go to Debra Gindhart Dragoo in Mucie, IN for her call to artists plea that came my way through email not so long ago. “In The Pink” is a silent art auction being held at Muncie Mall by The Star Press to support breast cancer survivors. This event, Women’s Head to Toe Expo is on Saturday, October 15, 2011.

My doodles have been pretty much the same for the past month and all involve the sun or moon. When these are finished, they will be ready to hang either side-by-side or individually.

work-in-progress

Ball chain was used for the swirls, stained glass and mirror with a touch of triangle Millefiori here and there.

My personal deadline for these is September 27th. By then they should be grouted and getting packed up to head on out towards Indiana in plenty of time for the auction.

I am thrilled to be involved in more than a few donations right now. It is a great feeling to do what I can with the resources I have.

My online buddy and fellow mosaicist, Rayna Clark is involved in a huge undertaking at the moment for children with cancer. I hope by now she got the small box of goodies I sent her way towards this good cause. She rocks!! Read her blog post: http://rayna-clark-mosaics.blogspot.com/2011/09/being-kind-to-kids-with-cancer.html

That about covers all the studio news for this week. It’s time to get back to cutting mirror!

Friday’s Featured Item will probably be a pillow from Etsy in keeping with this week’s theme.

☼-EarthMotherMosaics

©2011 Cindy White, EarthMotherMosaics

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