Now More Than Ever - Rio Grande

Now More Than Ever - Rio Grande

journal of the pmc guild


The Journal of the International PMC Guild


Now More Than Ever

Photo by Dennis Griggs, Courtesy of Haystack Mountain School of Crafts


Don’t let the lousy economy fool you. Artisans are mindful

of their money, and many are adjusting what they spend

on professional development accordingly. But as they find

ways to save, they are doing their best to not allow a sour

economic outlook get in the way of improving their skills

and becoming better artists.

2009 /3

fusion nine

page 2

To become more efficient, members of the PMC Guild are taking

online classes instead of traveling to workshops. They’re experimenting

with dust, filings and shavings of PMC, learning to reconstitute the material

for future use. Some are selling off surplus art supplies and scraps of

silver so they can stockpile PMC to guard against price increases. Many are

looking long and hard at the shows they attend to ensure they’re spending

wisely. Some economize by sharing booths to reduce their fees.

Others are using this time to develop different art-related skills that

might lead to income, so they can keep learning and creating. One woman

said she is writing more freelance articles for magazine and other publications.

When she gets a check, she buys silver. Another said she is spending

more time in the studio to put to use the skills she has already acquired.

But the bottom line for everyone we talked to is this: They cannot

afford to stop enhancing their skills, and will find ways to justify the

expense of professional development, whether it is attending workshops,

networking with colleagues via the Internet or spending more time in

bookstores and libraries. Indeed, because of the economy, it may be more

important than ever to focus on skill development so they will be better

positioned to stand out in a crowded field when the economy improves.

“When a workshop is being offered in a specific skill or technique I

need and I am available, I sign up,” said Linda Kaye-Moses, a jeweler from

Massachusetts. “This does not vary with the economy, because no matter

what the financial state of the country is, I still need to learn those techniques

that will allow me to make the work I want to make.”

Melanie Miller, an artist from Georgia, agreed. “It’s a necessity for me.

It’s not a hobby or a desire. If it’s worth it, I will make way for it somehow

in my budget, because it will increase my income if I become better at

what I do,” she said.

Kelly Russell of Maryland is taking fewer classes than in the past.

“When things were really good, I would take three or four classes a year

and absorb the costs into my professional budget. If I have a good year

and go to a lot of shows, there are a lot more classes to take. This year, I

probably won’t take any classes,” she said.

That does not mean Russell will stop learning. She is buying more

books and making better use of other learning tools, redirecting her resources

to lower cost self-improvement tools. “I read a ton, and I use the

Internet,” she said.

Jocelyn Cooley of Arizona began working with PMC three years

ago, and “sucked up everything I could” in terms of workshops and

conferences, spending several thousand dollars in a short amount of time.

Confident in her skills and eager to put them to good use, lately she has

focused her attention on her craft, spending as much time as she can in

her studio.

journal of the pmc guild



The PMC Guild is a

members organization with

the mission of providing

support, education, and

exposure for artists working

in Precious Metal Clay.

PMC Guild

1921 Cliffview Lane

Florence, KY 41042

Executive Director

Jeanette Landenwitch


Darnall Burks


Tim McCreight

Journal Editor

Bob Keyes

Web Manager

Sadelle Wiltshire

To Join, Renew, or

Edit Info Online

Membership Questions



Speak with the Director


“For a good year and a half, I busted it out and

did all the hands-on training I could. I was going to

everything I could manage, always seeking out the

best teachers,” she said.

These days, she is content to learn by reading,

and is discriminating in the workshops and conferences

she attends. The only professional development

she has in her plans are next year’s PMC Conference

at Purdue and a preconference workshop.

Miller dedicates most of her professional development

budget to attending fairs and festivals,

where she sells her work. While those events may

not qualify as professional development in the strict

sense of the phrase, Miller points out that the fairs

allow her to meet people, exchanges ideas, and get

feedback on her work from a diverse public.

She attends as many as 20 a year, and does not

plan to alter her routine in 2009. Each show has a

booth fee that ranges from $95 to $650, Miller said.

“But that’s how I sell my work. At some of these big

shows where people come in hordes and come to

buy, it’s worth it.”

Because she stays busy year-round traveling to

shows, Miller generally does not attend workshops

or conferences. She does buy DVDs and books and

also has taken courses over the Internet. This winter

she took an online class about riveting taught by

Robert Dancik.

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fusion nine

Kaye-Moses invests in books. She learns from them and finds inspiration

within the pages. She also reviews books and needs to know what’s

out there and how it’s being presented. She subscribes to many magazines

and journals and does not plan to let her subscriptions lapse. “This will

remain constant,” she said emphatically.

She does not plan to attend a conference this year, but that is more

a matter of conflicting commitments than the economy. “My attendance

at conferences is essential to my ongoing life as a teaching, writing, and

working artist,” she said.

If there is a noteworthy change in her budget, Kaye-Moses said it has

to do with factors that are not only related to the larger economic picture.

For instance, for 20 years she has spent a certain amount of money on

stones each year. This year, she does not plan to spend as much as previously.

“One reason is that I don’t need any more specialty stones at this

stage in my life, and another is that the economy has slowed down considerably.

As shows progress throughout the year, I may see a change, but

right now I’m limiting what I spend on stones.”

For Russell, her big commitment in 2009 is the Bead and Button show

in Milwaukee, scheduled for late May and early June. In the past, she has

taken classes associated with the show. This year, she will show her work,

but not enroll in classes. She has greatly reduced the number of shows she

plans to attend, and is taking a wait-and-see approach to the economy.

“Two years ago, I did 13 shows in eight months. Last year, I did five.

This year, it will be two, maybe three. And I am sharing a booth to cut

my costs in half,” she said. Her hope is that people who attend the show

will continue to buy her work. If they do, she will use that money to take

classes, but until she has the money in hand, she cannot justify the enrollment

fees and travel costs associated with the classes. “I’m just trying to

hang on so people will remember me when the things improve again.”

Cooley said her decision to cut back on classes and workshops has less

to do with the economy and more to do with her place in life these days.

As an artist, she feels she is at a crossroads. She is ready for the next step

in her career, which may be a larger presence on the Web or gallery representation.

She is using this time to take stock and create work.

“It became apparent that it was time for me to go into the studio

and start making my own thing happen. I noticed that I would go to a

workshop and kind of feel like I’d rather be off playing instead of sitting in

a class. I think I know how to handle my medium now.

“I can’t imagine not taking classes again someday—it just feeds me. I

just feel that right now, I need to be doing my work.”

page 4

journal of the pmc guild


Bob Keyes

We’re all familiar with the helpless feeling. We sit at our bench, fiddling

with tools; our minds turn over ideas, but nothing sticks and the ideas

fade away. Creativity can be fleeting. One minute it’s there and you feel

like you’re on an endless roll. But then it’s gone and no matter how hard

you try, you can’t seem to find the spark that ignites the next body of

work, perhaps unable even to work variations on a piece that you’ve made


It’s called a creativity block, and it happens to the best of us, professionals

and amateurs alike. The question is, how do you move the block or

effectively navigate around it? Are there devices, or tricks, that are useful

in getting back to being productive? That’s a loaded question, because

there is no right or single answer. The answer is different for each individual

artist. Some people, when they run up against a block, sit and stare

at the studio walls until they figure it out. Others might go for a walk.

We put the question to a group of five artists who gathered in mid-

March in Portland, Maine. These five women, all friends, came together

in at one friend’s studio for three days to exchange ideas, engage in

conversation and work alongside each other. Their goal was not necessarily

to create, and in fact none of the women expressed a goal of leaving

with finished work. Instead, they were simply seeking a shared experience

outside their comfort zone in an attempt to freshen their perspective and

broaden their creative vocabulary.

All the women have taken workshops in PMC and are familiar with

the clay, but this gathering had nothing to do with metal clay. Instead,

they came together to experiment with encaustics, or hot wax painting, a

medium they were all familiar with, but knew little about. Their material of

choice was less important than the lessons and advice they shared about

creativity and visual thinking. For them, the gathering was an effort to

grow and evolve as artists and individuals, giving each person another tool

to use when confronted with a block.

“There’s almost always a good reason why you are blocked,” said

Nancy Moore Bess, a basketmaker from Massachusetts. “It could be stress

at home or at work. It could be health issues, or a distraction of some kind.

They’re all very good reasons.”

“You have to have a talk with yourself,” added Lissa Hunter, who

hosted the gathering. “What is it? It might be that you just did a big body

of work and you have what I call ‘post-artem depression.’ You spent it all,

and you can’t do it again. So you have to say, ‘This is what it is. I’ve seen it

before. I have felt it before.’”

This gathering was about taking the time to try something unfamiliar

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page 6

in a collegial, non-pressure setting in hopes of triggering ideas that might

lead to new work, either directly or indirectly. As one participant said, “It’s

about finding a new way to think differently.”

In addition to Bess and Hunter, the gathering included Ann Grasso,

Carol Stein, and Abby Johnston, all New Englanders who have known each

other for some time. The decision to get together in Maine grew out of a

workshop the women attended in January in Bennington, Vermont.

“I have this nice studio, and it’s conducive to getting people together,”

Hunter said, explaining her initial invitation to her friends to come to Portland

for a few days of informal professional development. “A lot of people

do not have a space like this, so it’s kind of cool for me to be able to say,

‘Let’s use my space.’ I said, ‘Let’s get together and do this. Let’s try something

different.’ Usually you say that and you get, ‘Yeah, that’s a great

idea.’ But then you get home and you forget about it. But this time when I

got home, I sent out an e-mail and within two weeks we set the date.”

Each artist brought something to gathering – tools, materials, hot

plates, maybe a killer recipe for an after-work meal. They worked side by

side each afternoon, often in silence or quiet conversation, with bursts of

laughter and boisterous exchanges. They had fun, but were serious. They

called their experience play, but didn’t treat it as a game.

“What I want to come out of this is energy and discipline,” Hunter

said. “I want the energy that comes from working with other people.

When you work by yourself, after a workshop, you come home and you’re

all ready to go, and the next day it’s a little less and the next day you have

to go the dry-cleaners and run other errands. And it gets dissipated. So this

is good energy.”

The artists talked about techniques they use to move past blocks. One

said she busies herself by cleaning her studio when she cannot make work.

Another likes to read biographies of artists. Another said she simply keeps

trying. “I know I can get through this. I just have to keep working and try

not to be too judgmental,” said Stein.

Hunter cited something she read about the artist Chuck Close. “He

says, ‘You show up. You get to work. You just get to work.’ There is no

magic pill.”

Bess said, “If I am stuck on something, I set it aside. A block is when I

just can’t wrap my mind around work, and I just don’t know where to go.

I put something aside and just pick up something new, something totally

not related to what my block is.”

Hunter said that if she is lacking ideas that inspire her, she goes

through old sketchbooks. She often is pleasantly surprised at what she

finds. “It’s amazing how much I forget that I knew was meaningful at the

moment I sketched it. It almost always leads to new work.”

journal of the pmc guild

Another device she uses involves music. She listens to a familiar CD and

gauges her reaction. “I find myself saying, ‘I like this music, it’s very rhythmic.’

And then I ask myself, what does that pulsation have to do with my

work, and how can I use it?”

Here’s another idea: Go to a museum, or gallery. Before they launched

into their encaustic experiments, these women spent a few hours at the

Portland Museum of Art. A curator arranged to show a few encaustic

pieces in the collection. Just the process of looking at other work opened

up their imaginations and led to ideas, the women agreed.

At the end of their gathering, the artists went home to their communities,

endowed with new creative tools and hands-on knowledge of a

medium they had been only vaguely familiar with days before. Time will

tell if that knowledge surfaces in their work. But they all agreed, the gathering

and exchange of ideas will pay dividends the next time they’re stuck.

“This gives me more vocabulary. It’s another tool I can use,” Stein said.

What works for you? Send your ideas to If we

get enough ideas, we will share them in an upcoming publication.



for Annual 3

Jeanette Landenwitch, Director of the Guild, has announced the jurors for

the third issue of the popular book, the PMC Guild Annual.

Bill Griffith, Tennessee

Linda Kaye-Moses, Massachusetts

Terry Kovalcik, New Jersey

Catherine Davies-Paetz, Ohio

These generous volunteers bring a diverse and varied range of experience

and esthetics to the competition and guarantee a spririted selection. By

the time you are reading this issue of Fusion, the May 16 deadline has

probably passed, but if an extension is possible, it will be announced in the

NEWS section of If you missed the chance this time,

start working on next year’s piece. The schedule for this annual event is

roughly the same each year —images due in the late spring with delivery of

the book to all members in the autumn.

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fusion nine

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Profile: Jeanette Landenwitch

As Executive Director of the PMC

Guild, Jeanette Landenwitch wears

many hats. She’s responsible for the

day-to-day operation of the Guild,

which involves everything from

answering emails and fielding phone

calls to paying bills and assisting

new chapters.

She helps determine the content

of the Guild’s website and sets the

tone and direction of the organization,

which has approximately

3,200 members across the globe.

When members have a question or

concern, more than likely, Landenwitch

is the person who provides the

answer or works for a solution.

She also helps test and develop

new products. For instance, she was

involved at the grassroots level with

bronze and copper clays, and tries out new tools that are in development.

But mostly, Landenwitch serves as all-around ambassador for the

Guild and for PMC. More than any other individual, she is responsible for

spreading the word about precious metal clay.

“I don’t have a routine,” said Landenwitch, who grew up in Cincinnati

and now lives nearby in Kentucky. “I do whatever the job requires.”

Landenwitch joined the Guild as a dues-paying member in 2000. By

the end of 2004, she had become so deeply involved in PMC that Guild

leaders asked her to take over as Executive Director and she’s been on the

job ever since.

It’s a part-time gig, and that’s a good thing, because PMC is only one

facet of this creative woman’s busy life. In addition to working with PMC,

she has experimented with all kinds of crafts and has mastered many. She

is an exceptional seamstress, and made a living sewing for many years. She

also knits and crochets, and those who know her best attest to her avid

interest in jigsaw puzzles. She is a voluminous reader, and quite a successful

gardener as well.

“I think I have been creative for as long as I can remember,” she

said. “I’ve always enjoyed working with my hands, always tried to keep

busy making things. It seems like I am always doing something. If there’s

journal of the pmc guild

a show on TV that I like to watch, I’ll be knitting along with it, or embroidering.

I just have that creative urge, I guess. I need to see that I am

progressing, always doing something, to make sure something constructive

is coming out of my time.”

She got started with PMC in 1999. As is the case with so many

members, Landenwitch’s foray into PMC began as a curiosity. As a student

at the College of Mount St. Joseph in Cincinnati, she enjoyed ceramics.

She never pursued that interest after college, but she kept it in the back

of her mind. Early in 1999, she read a magazine article about PMC and

learned that it required firing in a kiln, which reminded her a little of her

ceramics class.

“I tried to do as much research as I could, but there was not much

information available at the time. I kept thinking about it throughout

that spring and summer, and I just decided I wanted to try it. It sounded

so interesting to work with this clay material, fire it and come away with

something made of precious metal. I bought a kiln and one package of

PMC, just one ounce, and I started to experiment.”

Back then, there were no classes. She had a booklet and sketchy information

about the firing schedule so she learned on her own, through trial

and error, and quickly took to the clay. “If you can work with your hands

in one type of craft, I think you can do a lot of things. You can adapt. The

first three pieces I tried all came out OK; rough, but wearable. That’s the

beauty of PMC—even newbies can have success right off the bat.” She’s

been hooked ever since.

It is with that sense of adventure and daring that she stepped into the

role as the Guild’s Executive Director. She is committed to ensuring that

the Guild remains at the forefront of PMC by making information widely

and readily available through, Guild publications and a

biennial conference.

“This August will mark the tenth anniversary of the creation of the

PMC Guild, and I’m honored to play a part in its growth. We have affiliates

in the U.K. and in Australia, and individual members in France,

Germany, Sweden, Turkey, Iceland, and beyond. More than anything else,

what the PMC Guild offers is information and a creative community.”

Nettie and her husband Dave have two sons and each is celebrating

a significant event in the near future. Their son Shawn will be ordained

into the Roman Catholic priesthood this spring, and their son Adam and

his wife Michelle are expecting their first child in July. Guild members join

together in wishing Jeanette and her family all the best in these exciting


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fusion nine

Medical Report

Repetitive Strain Injury

Mark Allen sees it all the time: stiff backs, sore necks, and painful fingers,

hands and arms. Allen is a chiropractor in the creative hotbed of greater

Portland, Maine, and many of his clients are painters, sculptors, and musicians.

They all have something in common—they spend long hours at their

craft, focused and intent. For people working in the studio arts, it means

being hunched over at the bench, attention focused on tiny details at arm’s

length. His advice is constant for everybody.

“People need to take a break. A lot of folks wait until they are done

with whatever they are working on, but I strongly recommend that they

do stretching exercises while they are working,” said Allen, proprietor of

Advantage Chiropractic of South Portland.

“Really, the biggest challenge is that creative people get focused and

they don’t want to stop. You get into it, and work until the piece is finished,

but that’s really not the right approach.” Allen recommends several

exercises to avoid stress ailments, which present themselves as repetitive

strain injuries, or RSI. Those injuries tend to occur in arms, wrists, and

fingers. Symptoms include tenderness and pain, tingling and numbness.

Sometimes it also includes inability to grasp objects and tools securely and

the locking of fingers, hands, and arms. The causes are what Allen calls

“the intensity of creative people.” They engage in repetitive actions that

often are awkward, tension-filled, and

involve poor posture.

Here are his recommendations:

Every 5 to 10 minutes, engage in

extension stretches of the hand by

pulling back on your fingers while

they are outstretched. Do the same

thing with your elbow locked and arm


page 10

journal of the pmc guild

While standing, reach your hand

over your head and down your back

to your spine. With your other hand,

push down on your elbow above

your head to create tension.

Place your hands on a flat

surface and spread your fingers

wide for 10 seconds, then relax

and repeat.

If you work hunched over, extend your back and

neck in the opposite direction, creating an inverse

arch with your back and neck. Hold your hands

at your sides and shake them gently.

“The most important thing is to be aware

of your habits,” Allen said. And don’t fool

yourself into thinking that your discomfort is

not related to your work. It may not be, but

chances are good that your work and your

work habits contribute.

“People come in complaining about a

back injury or other specific event, but I like

to monitor their hobbies or activities, because

more often than not, those tie in just as much

to the actual injury.”

Make us your destination for metal clay classes.

page 11

fusion nine


Fusion is officially two years old. The issue that you are reading now is

our ninth quarterly publication, and I dare say that we’ve come a fair

distance. Just as PMC itself took many years to develop and introduce to

the commercial marketplace, Fusion has undergone an evolution. We’ve

expanded our page count from 20 to 24, added color, features and, we

hope, become more sophisticated and discerning in our choice of stories

and topics.

When the leaders of the PMC Guild approached me in Spring 2007

and asked if I would be interested in becoming editor of what was then a

still-unnamed new journal, I really didn’t know what to expect—and I’m

not sure they did either. After two years, we have a better sense of ourselves

and our role in the PMC community.

Fusion’s predecessor, Studio PMC, had a long and distinguished

history. For 10 years, it was a leading authority on PMC. But as PMC

became better known and widely used, the field of journals became

crowded. Toward the end of its run, Studio PMC was in competition with

several magazines that were providing significant coverage of metal clay

(which is a good thing, by the way).

The Guild thought it would be wise to change things up a bit, to stay

ahead of the curve by creating a publication that would be nimble enough

to react quickly, yet substantial enough to emerge as a must-read among

people in the field. As it turns out, we created a suite of publications, each

with a slightly different mission. Guild leaders envisioned a publication

that would keep the Guild in the forefront of PMC by providing the best

and latest technical information while also reflecting trends, issues and

concerns of the jewelry community in general.

Two years later, here we are. We’ve put out nine issues of Fusion now,

and along the way have led the discussion about an exciting new material,

bronze clay; provided reasoned and un-sensational coverage of the

economy as it relates to precious metal; profiled trendsetters and interesting

personalities; and set an agenda for the future.

Your favorite one-stop shopping source

for the metal clay enthusiast

page 12

(520) 531–1966

Register online for certified, store, or designer account

journal of the pmc guild

Clearly, and I hope you agree, we are much more than a mouthpiece for

the Guild, although we are happy to be that, too. More important though,

we’re on top of issues that are timely and consequential. We believe that

Fusion offers important technical information, as well as personal stories

about your friends and colleagues.

We are not standing still. The world around us is changing in ways

unthinkable two years ago, and we’re doing our best to keep up with it. At

the beginning of 2009, we introduced iFusion, an electronic component to

Fusion that will show up as an email in your inbox at least once between

each issue of Fusion. We’ve published three of these already this year, and

we’re barely into the second quarter.

And let’s not forget, each fall members of the Guild also receive the

PMC Guild Annual, a handsome book in full color that presents a juried

collection of the best work of the year in PMC. Whereas iFusion might be

something you read quickly and then discard, the Annual is something we

hope you save and treasure. Fusion falls somewhere between those two.

As a member of the PMC Guild, you are part of our community, and we

a part of yours. As in any community, relationships evolve. Looking back,

we’re pleased with our progress. Looking ahead, we’re downright excited

about the future.

I’d love to know what you think

about our efforts, and as always, I

welcome suggestions and ideas. Feel free

to drop me a line anytime at journal@

— Bob Keyes

Supplier of Fine Silver Findings

for the Metal Clay Artisan

Toll-free 888-999-6404

Phone 401-305-3999

Fax 401-728- 8038


page 13

fusion nine


After two years, it’s easy to forget just where you saw a particular article

when you want to return to it to refresh your memory. Here is a summary of

the contents of the preceding eight issues of Fusion.





The Rising Price of Silver

Meet the New Editor

Make Your Own Oil Paste

Ethicals in Precious Metals


Meet the Annual

Yahoo Metalclay

Argentium Silver

Should I Name My Work?

Artist Profile: Gerald Haessig


Web 2.0

Understanding Density

New Chapter Liaison

Phil London to Receive Award

Guild Joins the Carbon Fund

Radical Jewelry Makeover

Mitsubishi’s Environmental Position

FinishingTip — Sanding Sticks

Traveling with PMC

Ask Sol: Dodging Commissions

Business Profile: Metal Clay Findings

Enamelist Conference 2007

Metal Clay World Conference in Las Vegas

Ask Sol: Using Projects When Teaching

How to Read the Fusion Label

Conference Update

Editorial: Selling Ourselves Short?

Ask Sol: Spending Family Money?


#4 2008/2

Dealing Creatively with High Costs

Oregon Sunstones

Safety Report on Fumes

What is Good Design?

by Alan Revere

Jewelers Face the Economics of

High Metal Prices

Artist Profile: Cindy Silas

Editorial:Why do we make art?

Ask Sol: Limits of Responsibility

page 14

“Your Complete Source for Enameling Supplies”


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(859) 291–3800

journal of the pmc guild



Color on PMC

Round Table on Health & Safety

Comment on the State of the Field

by Annual 2 Jurors

Bead & Button by Celie Fago

Editorial:Pricing is Subjective

Ask Sol: How to Help a Friend

Improve Her Work





Interview with Bill Struve, The

Story Behind Bronze Clay

Introducing the Masters Registry

What Makes a Good Photo?


Rendering Made Simple

Hasbro Designers by Terry Kovalcik

Artist Profile: Cindy Durant

Workshops Tips by Terry Kovalcik


Technical Data on Bronze Clay

Metal Clay Comparison

How to Read a Phase Diagram

Interview with Kevin Whitmore

Firing Garnets by M. E. D’Agostino

Charms for Charity Update

UK Electronic Newsletter

Editorial: Conference Postgame

Ask Sol: Sending Out Photos

Announcing New Publication


Visual Trigger Winners Talk

Editorial: Time to Be Creative

Ask Sol: Using Email Addresses

Artist Profile: Donna Penoyer

Bronze Clay Gallery

Ask Sol: Emails Sent in Haste

Editorial: Metal Clay Doubters

Now in its ninth year!


for more details.

Saul Bell Design Award

page 15

fusion nine

Cultural Messages

Symbolism Through

the Ages

Communication is key. Symbols are powerful. Through

the ages people have communicated within and outside

of their cultures through the use of symbols. Each culture

has its own unique expression, from Egyptian to Celtic to

modern America, and within each culture there exist subcultures,

from hippie to military to present-day texting.

Call for Entries

2010 PMC Conference Exhibition

Curator: Nettie Landenwitch

May through August, 2010

Every other year the PMC conference hosts an important international exhibition

of preeminent work made using metal clay. In the summer of 2010

this exhibition will be on display in the gallery at Purdue University where

in addition to the hundreds of metal clay artists who attend the conference,

the work will be seen by several thousand visitors to the college.

This juried exhibition is open to all Guild members and will receive national

coverage. This juried exhibition will celebrate the many and varied forms

of symbolic expression from ancient to contemporary times. You may

submit up to five (5) images of functional, non-functional, and/or jewelry

pieces for consideration. Now is the time to mark your calendar so you can

participate in this exciting thematic exhibition. Prizes will be awarded.

For details and a printable reminder, visit the Guild site and click on

the News button.

page 16


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journal of the pmc guild

Deadline for images January 20, 2010

Notification of artists February 24, 2010

Receipt of work March 31, 2010

Show opening May 17, 2010

Show closing August 6. 2010

Work will be returned to the artist by the end of August 2010.

Please send digital images on a CD (no slides) to:

2010 Conference Exhibition

1921 Cliffview Lane

Florence, KY 41042

The Next Fusion Visual Trigger Challenge

This issue of Fusion contains the

sixth installment of a feature we

call the Visual Trigger Challenge.

As you see in each issue of Fusion,

our creative members have made

work that responds to a particular

image. We will select a first-place

winner and runners-up to be

included in the following issue.

In addition to this international

exposure, the first-place winner will

receive $100 worth of PMC.

Submitted work can be wearable, sculptural, or functional, and can

include additional materials along with PMC. The winners will demonstrate

creativity, craftsmanship, and a clear reference to the target image. Send

a digital image to any time before July 17, 2009. A

color image appears on the back cover of this issue.

Sherry Fotopoulos

Serves metal clay artists



page 17

fusion nine

Ask Sol

I went away for the winter and invited my friend to use my studio. When I

returned, the place was immaculate and the plants healthy, but my flexshaft

was broken. My friend told me of the problem and offered to pay for the

repair. Since I’ve had that tool for about five years, it doesn’t seem right that

she should pay for the whole repair. We’re writing to ask how we can arrive

at a fair resolution.

— Two friends who want to remain friends

Dear Friends,

First let me congratulate you on your honest approach to the situation.

It is clear that you both value your friendship enough to figure this out. Assuming

the borrower used the tool in a normal way, it stands to reason that

the breakdown was the result of general wear and tear over the years. First I

think you should get an estimate (or have the repair done) so you know how

much money you are talking about. Since a new flexshaft costs about $200,

we can guess that a repair will be some fraction of that.

It is important to note that your situation is outside the traditional roles

of tenant and landlord. I’m guessing that your offer to loan your studio was

not a business decision, but a response to a friend’s need for a place to work.

Rather than apply the usual business models, think of your investment in

each other as part of your creative process. People travel great distances and

spend a lot of money to share ideas and gather inspiration, and here you

have it at your doorstep. A shallow view says you have a broken tool; a more

creative approach says you pay a few dollars to have a sympathetic partner

close at hand in a professionally stimulating relationship. Whatever the cost, I

think you’re getting a bargain that many people would envy.

But how to divide the responsibility? This trick might work: each of you

think of a range within which you would be comfortable. If the owner of the

flexshaft had a similar thought, it will be pretty easy to find agreement on a

proportion you both consider fair. In the end you will each decide how much

your friendship is worth. Thanks for writing,


Send your philosophical quandaries to Ask Sol,

page 18

journal of the pmc guild

News & Notes

From The Metal Heads, Feat

of Clay, the Tucson, Arizona

During the month of

April 2009 The Stained

Glass Shop in Glendale,

Arizona hosted their annual

Art Glass and Metal Clay

competition. More than

30 entries by 17 artists

were included in this year’s

competition. Members from

The Tucson Alchemists;

Elly Kadie, Doris King and

The judges: Elly, Doris, and Marnie

Marnie Ehlers performed

the judging with an all new

and improved judging criteria. The judging and awards consisted of three

areas; Creativity, Workmanship and Design.

With this said one entry could have as many as

three awards.

A wonderful assortment of prizes were donated

by Metal Clay Findings, Whole Lotta Whimsy,

PMC Tool & Supply, Brynmorgen Press,

Jeannette Landenwitch, Kate McKinnon, Pam

East, Hadar Jacobson, Lorren Davis, Celie Fago,

Barbara Becker Simon, Jay Humphreys, Holly

Gage, Carol Babineau, and Jackie Truty.

This years Grand Champion is Diane Sepanski

with her necklace; “The Attic.” First place

winners include Florence Coleman, Penny

Dickenson and Diane Sepanski.

“The Attic” by Diane Sepanski

page 19

fusion nine

The finalists for 2009 Saul Bell Awards, sponsored by Rio Grande, have

been announced. Congratulations and good luck to all. Pieces are judged

on innovation and uniqueness of design, successful incorporation of media

into the design, quality of workmanship. Winners will be announced at the

JCK Las Vegas show, May 30 to June 2. The grand prize is a $10,000 Rio

Grande gift certificate, and first place in each category brings a $2,500 gift

certificate. Second place in each category nets a $1,000 gift certificate.

Congratulations to these nominees whose work placed in the PMC


Jennifer Smith-Righter, Wearable By Design, Redwood City, Cailfornia

Barbara Fernald, Barbara S. Fernald Jewelry, Islesford, Maine

Gail Crosman Moore, Orange, Massachusetts

Kay Adams, St. Louis, Missouri

LaVonne Nye, Lostant, Illinois

After several years in development, Mitsubishi Materials announces a new

package design that will unify the product line. The new packages were

designed by Guild Communications Director Tim McCreight and reflect a

western color sense and aesthetic. The look is new but the contents are

the same —three types of PMC, plus sheet, syringe, and slip. Firing schedules

and all other details remain as before. To see the full line of packaging,


Welcome to the new PMC Guild chapter in the San Diego County area.

Members meet the third Tuesday of every month at the San Diego

Lapidary Society, 5654 Mildred St. Contact Melissa at mwilcoxson83@aol.

com with questions.

Step by step PMC instruction on DVD series Silver in No Time,

PMC Classes, products and services by Linda Bernstein.

page 20


journal of the pmc guild

As reported earlier in iFusion, the PMC Guild will return to Purdue

University for its next Conference, scheduled for July 29-Aug. 1, 2010.

“The Guild debated moving to another location, but decided to stick with

Purdue,” reports Executive Director Jeanette Landenwitch. “After reviewing

the needs for our biennial conference, and much searching for alternative

locations, we have made the decision to return to Purdue University in

Indiana for our 2010 conference. Our goal is to have the best conference

experience for our attendees. Purdue has everything we need, has the

dates available for us, and is a great value for the money.”

The Phoenix Chapter “The Metal Heads Feat of Clay” hosted a workshop

with Christie Anderson (aka “The Birdhouse Lady”) in March. They just

completed a fantastic workshop with Jay Humphreys, learning the ins and

outs of metal clay veneer. They are looking forward to hosting workshops

this year with Kate McKinnon, Holly Gage, Pam East, Hadar Jacobson,

and a Rio Certification class with Barbara Becker Simon.

Diane Sepanski, leader of the group says, “My plan is to stimulate

the creative process by promoting contests and competitions, introducing

new processes for metal clay, and materials to include with metal clay and

bringing in guest instructors.

Reminder: Members are entitled (and ecouraged) to sign up for the Guild’s

electronic email newsletter called iFusion. If you are not getting this informative

mailing, go to the Members section of to sign up.

Contributors to the Visual Trigger Challenge on the next page:

1 DeWalt Stevens 6 Phyllis Howard

2 D. Sims 7 Louise Shadonix

3 patsy monk 8 Mary Dierks

4 patsy monk 9 Sally Lamb

5 Carol Hamilton 10 R. Merrill Bollerud

page 21

fusion nine

Visual Trigger Challenge

This is a first! The jurors were

unable to choose a winner this

quarter, so we’re asking for your

help. Decide which of these

pieces shows the most innovative

response to the photo at the right,

then visit the Guild website to vote.

Go to and

click on the NEWS button. A quick

link will give you a chance to record

a vote for your choice. To allow for

impartiality, we have left the names

off these pages. If you want to see who made what, cross reference on

page 21. Please vote as soon as possible. When the voting stops we’ll announce

a winner.



3 4

page 22

journal of the pmc guild







page 23

Fusion: The Journal of the PMC Guild, its staff, and contributors specifically disclaim any responsibility or

liability for damages or injury as a result of any construction, design, use, manufacture, or any other activity

undertaken as a result of the use or application of information contained in any Fusion issue or article.

fusion nine

PMC Guild

1921 Cliffview Lane

Florence, KY 41042

Fusion Visual Trigger Challenge: See inside for details

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