LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Dear Editor:

For printing out the lessons on the site, something else that can be done is to cut and paste it from the site into a word document and reduce the font size, reduce picture size and maybe cut out any commentary or unneeded words in the lesson and then print. They can also be saved that way too.

This can greatly reduce the size of the printout.

Lori Greenberg

Dear Editor:

So how do we go about sneaking a picture of Desiree in?? I was really glad to see Elissa. Please add as many artists' pictures as you can in the future. Loved this edition. Methinks I was the first since you were still loading the Altoids lesson pics.

heheheh

Kim
The Helpful Clay Elf


Dear Kim:

We love printing our artists' photos also, so we will encourage our artists to send their pics in with their articles!

And you were probably the first, since I was working on the mag at 8 a.m. on March 1st! What are you doing up so early?

Deirdre

Dear Polyzine Editor and Staff,

I read with interest Anne's reaction to the length of your how-to articles (Feb. issue). While I sympathize with her frustration about their length hampering her intent to share them, I feel the pictures are the very things that make the instructions so valuable.

The creators and contributors to Polyzine produce an outstanding collection of articles that far outdistance similar efforts by traditional craft magazines. The primary difference, in my opinion, are the large, colored, clear, close-up photos documenting steps in each process. With pictures, the text can be limited to the basics & the photos do the "talking". (I find the primarily text articles in publications such as Jewelry Crafts terribly confusing and difficult to follow; many of my p.c. pals share this opinion.)

Anne ... have you thought of making one set of instructions and putting them in a loose-leaf notebook for sharing through your guild library? Anyone wishing to check out the collection could copy them at their own time/expense. Thanks for the hours of time and huge amounts of talent contributed to Polyzine! What a great addition to our p.c. worlds!

Sincerely,

Karen Sexton
MHPCG, Denver, CO.

Dear Editor:

I like to print out directions for projects so I can keep them in a folder and they are easily accessed. I love ones with pictures, they are the most helpful. In order to make the best use of my paper and ink I use the "set-up" options on my printer software. I choose "inksaver" or similar. I also print the pages one at a time so that I can flip the 1st page over and then print on the back. This uses 1/2 as much paper.

You do this by specifying the pages to print in the print range section. Example: In your print set-up screen instead of leaving the print default at ALL pages, print pages 1 to 1, then flip your paper over and send it through again printing ages 2 to 2, and so on until the article is completely printed.

I hope this might help someone.

kathy

Dear Editor:

Thanks for this wonderful magazine and your service to Poly Clayers. It is amazing that you manage to produce such a high quality and useful publication every month.

Cheryl Ross

Dear Editor:

What a wonderful site. The most inspiration I've gotten. All this clay is sitting in a box waiting for a nudge. This could be the nudge I needed. I've book marked it and I'll be back. The instructions are wonderful. Thanks to all your folks for sharing their talents.

Joan Lowder, NC

Dear Editor,

First, thanks so much for your wonderful zine. The terrific article on Chrysanthemum Canes has been my favorite so far. Regarding Tommie's article on polymer clay art being viewed as "just plastic" or a kid's craft; I found all of Tommie's reasons for this attitude persuasive. However, I think he left out one vital reason that he accidentally touched on in another article about being one of the few men in polyclay. PC artists are almost all women.

I took a workshop with Jonathan Talbot, a well-known collage artist (wonderful workshop), and he told the group of 18 women, 1 man, that 60 to 75% of all artists pursuing "fine" arts were female. Yet, only 10 to 20% of art displayed in galleries was by women! (Jonathan, forgive me if I got the percentages wrong, but I'm true to the point of your statement.)

Yes, this represents rampant sexism which I believe also contributes to the discounting of PC art as a legitimate art form by some. To change this narrow-minded attitude, we cannot expect the people who dismiss PC art as being "less" to change their attitudes. They have a vested interest in their belief, held in place by the need to feel better than others, dislike of change or newness, a desire to conform to their crowd, or just the simple inertia of "this is my belief and I'm stickin' with it."

We are the major agents for changing the general attitude, because we are the ones who benefit from the change. To do this we must believe that we are artists and that our contributions are important.

Tommie was so right. We must expect to be treated as artists, insist that we are treated as artists, and learn to accept being treated as artists graciously and as our due. I'm not suggesting that we all become tempermental divas. But genteel self-effacement and false modesty aren't going to benefit us as individuals or advance the art form.

Thanks for the opportunity to rant.

Sincerely,

Jo Aldridge
Lightstep Studio & Design

Dear Editor:

I had never heard of this theory [Issues in the Crafting World, March 2001]. I was very intrigued by one thought. What would these people say to someone like me. I am a true American Mutt. I have so many races in my family line that I will not be hampered by any restriction of race. :-)

Just wondering,

Shawn

Dear Editor:

Do you recommend cooking clay in a toaster oven?

Carmen

Dear Carmen:

Yes I do! The toaster oven is great because you can dedicate it just to clay, so if you get any residue building up, you don't need to clean it.

Just be sure of two things:

1. Do use an oven thermometer to check the temperature of the toaster oven. That little dial is notoriously wrong.

2. Don't plug the toaster oven into a circuit that has other appliances on it. Those other appliances will drain energy and the toaster oven will fluctuate in temperature.

If you are planning on curing something like a bicycle -- don't laugh, I read somewhere that someone covered his bike with polymer clay -- a regular oven will be necessary. Many people use their regular oven but cover their clay items with tin foil to keep fumes and residue contained.

Additionally, many people use convection ovens, which I understand work beautifully and are getting less and less expensive.

But for small items like beads or anything else that's less than 10 inches by 8 inches by 4 inches, the toaster oven is great. You can purchase used ones at flea markets or secondhand stores. Don't pay more than $5 to $10 for one.

You can even find them for free at the local recycling center. I see them at mine all the time.

Deirdre

Hi!

I am interested in teddy bear buttons as I am a teddy bear collector and a knitter. Could you please give me so information as to cost, etc. Thank you.

Eileen E. Callahan


Dear Eileen:

We are just a free, on-line magazine. We don't sell anything. Readers: can anyone help Eileen out?

Deirdre

Hi all,

Thanks for the time and effort you put into creating a lovely 'zine. I read in your editor's letter this month, "We've had some requests to make the projects smaller, since they are printing off eight, ten or even twelve pages at a time. The only way we can shorten the articles is to remove the pictures."

Actually, if you used a smaller font size, you could reduce the sizes of the pages considerably. I used the same font in a smaller size on our guild web site, and it's still very readable. See http://www.good-night-irene.com.

Just a thought. As it is, I can read your site from halfway across the room. ;)

Thanks!

Irene

Dear Irene:

LOL! We can indeed reduce the font size to 12. I hope this helps with the various printing problems!

Deirdre

Dear Editor:

I am having trouble printing the color pictures in the older issues. I would like to print off all of the back issues so that I can read them at my leisure. I am using Netscape, Windows 95 and a Pentium processor. Can you give me any clues. The only difference between these issues and the Feb and March issues is that I go through geocities.com. Is there a setting I need to make on my Netscape browser?

Thanks for your help,

Nan Roche

Dear Nan:

Yes, there is something weird going on with the earlier issues and their pictures. I will spend some time tinkering with those old issues (November, December -- I think January and on are fine?). Thanks for the heads up.

Deirdre

Dear Editor:

After reading The "Tiny Books" tutorial several times I failed to find a reference to baking. Am I missing something or is it the tutorial. I like the tutorial and grateful you have them. Being new to PC I am really glad to have found your site, it's really great.

Thanks

Rick

Dear Rick:

No, you aren't missing anything! We didn't add that you should bake after step eight. We've since added that important information!

Deirdre

Dear Editor,

I first knew your product when my sis gave me those sculpey III -mold scarecrows. It was excited me since, and after that, every time I opened my computer I tried to stop at your website looking for a new ideas and technique. It helps me a lot.

In my country we also have clay - Japan (not bake, just let it dry on the open air, only white color) but now they produce it local.

Sorry I am not introducing myself. My name is Grace, from Indonesia, and I would like to be reminded also when you have a new issue appearing. Is it for free, coz honestly I couldn't afford to buy since the economy in here are so bad, the US$ currency and mine are very high differences.

Thank you very much spending your time reading my email.

Grace

Dear Grace:

Good news! We are a free on-line magazine, so you can visit us anytime you want at no cost. Tell all your friends! I imagine that the techniques we use can easily be translated to the air-dry clay that you have access to. If you are ever able to purchase polymer clay, let us know what projects you've made from it!

Deirdre

Hi.

I'm an artist working in sculpture and I was considering using polymer instead of regular clay for a figure piece, which will be about 18" high and rather thick around. I can use wire mesh as an armature. I thought I might form thin sheets and drape them over the wire. I may use color. If I do, can I use Super Sculpey as the first layer and then add color on top..? Do I bake the 1st layer and then apply the color layers and then bake again? What would be a good brand to use in that case?

Thanks for any info you may have ... this is an experiment but I see the possibilities are extensive.

Thank you,

J. Ott

Dear J.:

I have no idea, but I sent out a request and here are some e-mails I received. I hope they help!

Deirdre Dear J:

There is lots of discussion on how to sculpt larger items, plus when and how to use different kinds of armatures and the sculpting characteristics of various brands, on this page at Glass Attic --they also include words of wisdom from Wayne the D... :-)

http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/sculpture.htm 

Diane B.
http://www.glassattic.com (polymer clay "encyclopedia")

Dear J:

I've never used Super Sculpey, but I've done fairly large pieces starting with paper mache (newspaper strips coated with flour mixed with water and a bit of salt). I prep the dry paper mache form with two coats of white acrylic paint, then a coat of Sobo. I then cover the entire piece with a thin sheet of white Premo and bake it. This process creates a great tough form that can take a lot of experimenting. Then the fun really starts with the colored Premo clay, texture, etc.

Hope this helps!

Diane Villano
Southern Connecticut Polymer Clay Guild

Dear J:

Go to Wayne, The Dane at: intermediate to advanced sculptors: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/figurativesculpture

Sunni/Colleen

Dear J:

Yup, that would be the best way to go! If you make such a large sculpture, make sure you bake it long enough. To bake it again and again is a good way to do it! I would use Premo or Fimo for the last layers. Hope this helps you!

Bye bye

Ria

Hi,

I have been cruising the net this morning......no particular reason. Actually was searching for info on the photo transfer method with polymer.

Just want to tell you thanks for your clear and concise descriptions and instructions. Your step-by-step for the eggs is wonderful.

Once again thanks for clear words.

Kathy

Greetings!

It's a good thing I just discovered you while on vacation because I've just spent a couple of hours checking out your e-zine and fantasizing about all the projects I'd like to try instead of doing what needs doing around here. What great information you've made available!

I am curious about the Fimo #014 mentioned in the inclusions article by Dianne Cook. My Fimo supplier, Helby Imports in New York, doesn't know what I'm talking about and none of the local craft stores know what Fimo #014 is all about and frankly, I'm not quite sure for what I'm asking!! Where do I find this product because I'd love to try it out!

Thanks,

Carol Entin

Dianne writes back: Oh, dear, that should read: Fimo Soft #014.

Hi Deirdre,

I noticed a letter from a clayer in Canada who is feeling rather alone, so I decided that your readers might like to know about claying in Canada? I'm the founder of Clayamies, a lively national online guild for Canadian clayers which has been around since late 1997.

Two questions: 1. May I prepare a short article about Clayamies for a future issue of Polyzine? 2. Would you put me in touch with the Canadian who wrote the letter, Wendy Debicki? If you don't want to send me her email, please send my address or forward this post to her, if possible?

Thanks for a great zine--Clayamies love Polyzine!!

Cheers from the Truly Snowy North,

Cathy Simpson

Dear Cathy,

Thanks for the letter. Yes, we would love an article about your group -- and that goes for any group out there! We'd love to print articles about all the groups out there -- what are you up to? What activities do you do? Let us know!

I think I gave you Wendy's address, but if I forgot, hey, Wendy, e-mail me and I will put you in contact with Cathy!

Deirdre

Hi

I have enjoyed browsing through your magazine(?) website. I'm also new to polymer clay and so far I really enjoy it and don't have enough time for all the ideas I have but I'm getting smarter (maybe). I've started to write down or draw pictures of what I want to do. Again I enjoyed your website.

Pat

Dear Pat,

Thanks!

We'd love to see pictures of your work!

Deirdre

Hi!

Great new issue!!! Question -- on the egg instructions[Byrd's "How to Make an Egg"], did she REALLY mean to cut the cane slices 1/2" thick? That can't be right, can it??

Emily N.

Dear Emily,

No, indeed she did not! That would be 1/16th inches thick. We've made the correction to the egg instructions.

Thanks!

Deirdre

 

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