Old Canes

For the past 6 weeks I’ve been consolidating my in-town studio and home studio into a single studio (at home). I haven’t been able to touch clay. I sorted through every box, drawer and shelf and eliminated enough “stuff” to reduce the space requirement by half. This was a long, boring process; however, the upside was that I found things that have been hidden away for years.

Such was the case with the canes I used to make this butterfly.

Caned butterfly by Carol Simmons

The butterfly is actually about 2 inches across. The photo was taken using direct sunlight and the contrast was enhanced using Photoshop. Unfortunately, in ordinary light the butterfly is far less impressive. I made the canes about 8 years ago for a swap and to test an idea I had about caning with mica clay. The process takes a bit of explaining so I’ll save that for the next post.

I had stored the clay in very thin slices between sheets of plastic. I also kept some small chunks of the original canes. I was surprised to find that these old slices of Premo canes – although a bit dry – were still pliable. It was even possible to slice the cane chunks into usable slices.  I applied some of the slices to a pendant core to see how that worked out. The butterfly was too large to fit in its entirety, so I just tried a collage of slices.

butterfly collage pendant medium

I think this technique shows some promise but the colors are just too dark to read well unless they are under bright light. I am considering trying this technique with pastel colors but the process is time-consuming. In the next post I’ll tell you how I did it.

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14 Responses to Old Canes

  1. Judy Johnson says:

    Wow! Really gorgous work:-)

  2. Your colors, design & execution are superb–just what I’d expect from you.

  3. Ann Dillon says:

    Carol, this is so very beautiful!

  4. Deborah Edery says:

    It looks like a stain glass butterfly. The detail is meticulous and artistry…well that’s who you are.

  5. Laurie says:

    That is GORGEOUS! Can’t wait for your post on how you did it! 🙂

  6. Nadine says:

    I am in the process of moving my studio, too, to a house I just bought. What a job! I will still keep the studio, tho, and use it just for painting while other stuff like polymer will be in the new house. I relate to your comment that it is a boring and long job to sort and organize. The butterfly is so intricate and, of course, like all your work, lovely.

  7. Monica says:

    That’s a beautiful butterfly!!
    Where do you get these shapes, ideas from?

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