Sunday, March 14, 2010

My head no longer really hurts - week 11 of canes

The original

My attempt

Hi Everyone,

It's done, it's done! I have tackled and somewhat vanquished my Jon Anderson cane.

It came out OK. I'll highlight some lessons learned (i.e., mistakes) here. It's not that I'm being overly critical, just thought I'd point out what I noticed. Believe me, I'll brag when it's warranted.

I'm pretty happy with the colour selection. For the green background I did a skinner blend and then jaggy cut it (a Mike Buessler term) for the top piece to give it some interest. I didn't need to do that though because by the time it's reduced you don't see it.

I had some challenges with the cane reduction. There's a wee bit of blue that was much firmer than the clay surrounding it. You can see it in the two cane slices on the bottom left in the centre of the cane. That was a pain and slowed down the reduction considerably. I used the same blue throughout the cane but my white always tends to be a bit softer and I think placing the two together in such large chunks only aggravated it. Puckered like mad.

I was worried that the red bits at the end were coming up too far to the sides (cane on top right shows it) but by the time the cane reduction is complete and you put one piece next to another you don't really see it.

My spiral ended up squaring up by the time I got it smaller. Not sure how to change that. I think I didn't shape the skinner blend on the right properly. That's probably a general thing about the cane is the proportions.

I had accidentally cut into the spiral while I was making the cane which interrupted the spiral and it really shows up to me. You can see it just above the blue triangle of clay that was giving me issues and it just looks a little imperfect to me.

The colour placement of my inner skinner blend on the left isn't quite perfect. It curves too high and doesn't align with the highlighting on the other two skinner blends. I think some of that was exacerbated by the dark blue piece not moving with the cane so the white ended up shifting higher and higher.

Will I do it again? Maybe. There are a few other Jon Anderson canes that I want to tackle. We'll see. Something for later in the year.

Anyhow, I'm happy that I figured it out, and there are definitely some lessons learned. I can honestly say this is one of the hardest canes I've ever tackled in terms of mental gymnastics.

But it was fun and I do feel a sense of accomplishment.




Fiona said...

I've just made my first cane and feel I have a long way to go. I must hunt around for some tutorials.

surfingcat said...

Wow what an accomplishment! That is one complex cane. I love the skinner blend green background I think it was great choice.

I can see what you are talking about with the issues you pointed out but only because you pointed them out - I wouldn't have noticed otherwise I would just have been too busy being stunned at what a complex and beautiful cane it was!

It is good that you view it as lessons to learn - there is often room for doing things better or at least different but it doesnt mean what you have achieved isn't awesome!

I look forward to seeing you use it now ;)

Gail said...

Great job Sandy...

Cindy Lietz, Polymer Clay Tutor said...

Tackling a cane like this gives you a whole new respect for the Cane Master's out there, doesn't it? There are so many variables that aren't that obvious the first time you make a cane as complex as this. The consistency of the clays, etc.

Great job in working through this one Sandy! It turned out really great. You should try it again, it would go a lot easier after all the lessons you learned from doing this one. And you would have the satisfaction of perfecting it further.

Loved watching you work on all these canes. Makes me itch to do more canes myself. Thanks so much for sharing your journey with us!

Debbie said...

Great effort. As Cindy said, it's got to give you an even greater appreciation for the master cane-ers. I sure would have ben delighted that an attempt came out that good!

Wendy (Weaver) Orlowski said...

Sandy, Congrats! What a beautiful cane. Well done!!!

miniannalee said...

I have an award for you on my blog.
I am in awe of your polymer clay canes. Mine never turn out that good.