Monday, July 1, 2013

Too much to do & Not Enough Time

To my current blog followers & those who may come to my blog in the future....I have had to make a difficult decision.  I currently have a website, this blog & a Facebook page all geared to keeping in touch with friends & clients as I continue down this journey of creating wearable art.  Obviously it takes time to maintain & update these three forums so I had to decide which one to cut out to allow more studio time.  My website has great value because it is a portfolio that jurors & art shows can refer to when deciding whether to invite me or accept me into a show.  My website also allows my followers to go to my Upcoming Shows page and see where I will be exhibiting next.

Although my blog allows me to reach out, in many ways it is redundant to my Facebook page.  Furthermore, my Facebook page actually allows me to reach more people, is easier to update & allows more interaction with friends & followers.

So I have made the decision to stop updating my blog.  I know not everyone uses Facebook but if you do, I really hope you will go to my page & Like my page so you can see updates as I post them.  To connect with me on Facebook, copy and paste the link below into your browser then all you have to do is click on the Like button.

You will be able to post on my Facebook page at any time as well as comment on the posts I do.  I hope to see you there!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

New Facebook Page!

Hi All!  Hope everyone is having a wonderful spring.  I'm gearing up for my next show which is May 18-19th in Historic Downtown Cocoa Village and then will only being done one show a month until October which means lots of studio favorite place to be.

I just revived my Facebook page so I hope you will go there and "Like" my page.  Between my blog & Facebook, I am hoping to keep closer contact and give updates to all.  If you do have Facebook, just click on "Find Friends" and then at the top enter Debbie Stillman, Jewelry Artisan.  Select me and then click on the LIKE button to the right of my profile picture.

Till next time!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Costa Rica Gems

I bought these beautiful semi-precious gemstones (Tiger Eye, Blue Agate, Imperial Serpentine, Sodalite, Sea Bean to name a few) in Costa Rica and will use wire wrapping to create pendants from them.  Will post some finished pieces soon!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

So much Inspiration

Jim and I are spending 10 days in beautiful Costa Rica with my mom & dad and am so glad I brought my  sketch book with me.  The Royal Palms here don't even look real & the foliage is amazing.  Below are some pictures I have taken that I will use to create new pieces.  I also sketched the Royal palm that is right off our balcony and that will become one of my pieces for my Living in Paradise collection.  Part of me wants to stay here for months & the other is anxious to get home to my studio.  What a great dilemma to be in!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Another Marvel of Mythology is Coming Soon!

I created this drawing while we were traveling to the art show in Fort Myers.  (Now that we have things packed so I can ride in the motorhome with Jim instead of me driving the truck & trailer I can actually get work done :-)

Although my first dragon will always be special, I am even more excited about this one.  In addition to sculpting in .999 Fine Silver, I am going to experiment with some different techniques for detail and I will be using quite a bit of 22K gold.  I just purchased a 10mm genuine Moonstone so that will be what the Dragon is holding.  Dragon's are seen holding crystals or stone because of their magical powers. But alas, my precious Dragon will have to wait a while longer to come to life because we are going out of town this weekend for 10 days.  But when we get back, you can bet the first thing I start on will be this project!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Icky Blobs of Paint & A Gigantic Blob of Tenancity

A warning to my readers.  If you want to read the WHOLE story, start at the bottom.  Or you could always print a copy and use it for your bed time reading tonight.  Ha!  Either way, I hope you'll get a few chuckles out of this story.

 WEDNESDAY - 7:00 AM - The piece is DONE!!!  I won't even try to write about the fiasco and all the things that went wrong all day yesterday trying to finish this piece.  But just to give you a hint, Jim told me this morning "you are married to that piece".  And when it came time to name it I was using names like "Pelican Poo Poo", "This Pelican is a Turd", and even a few worse than that.

It was like this piece just did not want to be.  I did research this morning to come up with something nicer in a name than the above and found the perfect name "Pitney Pelican".  Pitney is an Old English name for "Island of the Stubborn".  Of course when I went to lay him on the table for Jim to take a picture I couldn't find him!  Jim & I both looked for 10 minutes before I found him hiding amongst some of my tools.

This will be a lucky charm for whoever gets this piece.  It will help them be strong, persistent & stubborn and endure anything that comes their way!

Even though the first etching was not a success standing alone because there was too much detail, it made a beautiful backplate for a butterfly I had sculpted in Fine Silver.  In Art, everything has value even if it didn't end as it was originally envisioned.


MONDAY - 4:00 PM - Yea!  Success!  And it makes me smile to know that I did my own drawing that is now etched in a piece of sterling silver.  Now to figure out how I want this to be a pendant.  Many times I have to swirl it around in my mind on what the final piece will look like which could take anywhere from minutes to days to weeks to months.  I'll next update this post with a picture when the piece is ready to go into my gallery for sale.


MONDAY - 10:55 AM - Round #2 using 26 gauge sterling rather than 22 gauge and the pelican will mostly be negative space.  Heat setting for 30-45 minutes then into the etching solution for 2 1/2 hours.  Stay tuned for the results!

SUNDAY 5:00 PM - Well, it worked and it didn't work.  The design is perfect but you can only really see it in just the right light even with a patina.  But I do have a use for the piece!  It will make a beautiful backplate for a butterfly I had sculpted from Fine Silver.

As I laid in bed trying to go to sleep last night, I pondered this Pelican project and tried to figure out what went wrong.  I really love this project idea and want to find a way to make it happen.  I realized that if I use a smaller thickness of sterling, leave the piece to etch for 2 1/2 hours instead of 1 1/2 and have more negative space, then maybe it will work.  The problem is I have too much detail so the pelican gets lost.  If I make him solid and the etching deeper, I think it will work.  So guess what I am working on tomorrow?  Yep, you got it!  (Obviously I hate the thought of giving up but that's the stubborn side of me that I got my dear old Dad)

SUNDAY 2:20PM - The piece is now sitting in the etching solution and the electrobes are hooked up.  The etching takes 30 minutes -2 hours depending on how deep I want the etching to be.  I'll check it in an hour and in the meantime, I'm keeping my fingers crossed and in my studio finishing a St Augustine piece and making some earrings.  Singing (Beach Boys tune) "And she had fun fun fun till stuff gets in the way"

SUNDAY - 12 Noon.  Well, third time wasn't exactly a charm.  The blob happened again - UGH! - but I AM stubborn and love this project so I went a fourth round.  Before I did I looked at the pen and realized there must be something wrong with it (and of course I'm too lazy to drive into Micheals and get another one).  I discovered the problem and managed to finish the drawing with only one blob at the bottom that won't make a difference. Hurray!!  Once again persistence pays off.  Now I will heat set the paint in my food dehydrator and then in an hour or so will set the piece in the etching solution.

Here's the pre-etching piece.  The paint pen acts as a resist so all the areas painted in black will be raised when the etching is done....hopefully.  Don't know the shelf life on the etching chemical which I haven't used in several months so we'll see but as usual, I have HOPE!  Stay tuned....will post an update.

SUNDAY - 10:00 AM  I was all excited to start work on a project I have wanted to do for several weeks and that is etching a Pelican on sterling silver sheet to make a pendant.  I use an acrylic paint pen to do the drawing on the sheet of sterling. I was one stroke away from being done when the paint pen dropped a big blob right in the middle of the pelican. A few curse words later & some acetone, I started over. Almost done a second time & another blob of paint falls on the piece but good news! It landed on the side and I could actually incorporate it into the piece. Sigh of relief. Then just as I'm pulling the pen away & think I'm done, it drops another big blob on the pelican. Screaming, stomping, cursing (and scaring Jim in the process) I walk out into the garage for a breath of air. Now it's soaking in acetone and I'm gonna give it one more try. 

Friday, March 1, 2013

A Chilly show in Florida - Really?

Yes, it's true!  It DOES get cold in Florida.  We are headed out today to do the Sarasota Wildlife Fine Art Festival located between Longboat Key & Sarasota.  The lows are going to be in the 40's & the highs only in the low 60's.  Burrrrr......  To add to that the winds are going to be 14-22 mph which means Wind Chill Factor!!  For the snow birds this will be "summer" weather and there are plenty of snow birds in the show area.  For me, I'm just happy that last week I bought a pair of fur lined boots & fleece gloves and pulled out my wooly hat from the top of my closet.

As for the show, this is their first year and a very worthy cause to raise funds for their wildlife sanctuary.   For more info, here is the link to their website:

For me, I am very excited to be a part of something new and I created some recent pieces (pics below) around the theme of wildlife.  If any of you decide to come & check out the show, dress warm and you are welcome to come into my booth to get warm because we will have all the sides down to keep out the wind!