First, in the spirit of Christmas, a bead GIVEAWAY: the first 5 people to leave a comment on this post will win a festive Santa penguin bead, fresh out of the kiln! Obviously it won’t make it to you in time for Christmas this year, but you can tuck it away for future Christmases. Of course, I had to come up with the dorkiest photo of all time in order to display the penguin family. Ice cubes and cotton balls, I thought it was quite winteresque.
I made these cute little guys based on a tutorial found on Pinterest. I can’t for the life of me find the link to the tutorial again (the ‘pin’ function wasn’t working when I came across this one…). Alas. I have the PDF and if you would also like to have the instructions, email me (firstname.lastname@example.org), and I will send them to you. Even though the instructions were in German (?) I was still able to follow the step-by-step photos to come up with penguins that look nothing like the original inspiration. But still adorable, and that’s how it works when you put your own spin on things. In the past I was not a ‘sculptural’ beadmaker, definitely not a ‘critter’ person, but it’s fun to experiment every once in a while by venturing into new territory.
On the subject of Pinterest… words cannot express my love for Pinterest. For an artist (or any visual person, for that matter), it provides an endless and constantly changing source of visual stimulation. I have several boards (you can see them here), and I turn to them frequently for inspiration. I used to keep a collection of photos I loved from the internet on iPhoto, and this is the same idea, but much, much better. For beadmakers who love to look at other beadmakers’ beads, there are thousands and thousands of photos of beautiful beads on Pinterest. My own board of lampworked beads is filled with beads I come across that strike me as the most amazing, the most inspiring, the most incredible examples of the art. I add new stuff all the time. What’s great is that every person who pins lampwork beads has different taste… If you do a search for ‘lampwork’ and select ‘boards’ instead of individual pins, you can view personally curated collections of beads put together by others who love the same thing you do. The quality of work is usually very, very good, and if you’re looking for inspiration, it’s much more satisfying than searching through pages and pages of mediocre beads on Etsy or Ebay. Check it out, whatever you’re interested in, guaranteed it’s on Pinterest.