High Days – Imbolc

Whilst I’m only about 20% pagan at the best of times (most of the rest is Quaker) I still like to keep the High Days, and today was Imbolc. Or, for the Christian side of me, St Brigid’s Day – patron of poets, blacksmiths, and healers, and always one of my favourites.

My normal artistic practice on High Days is to try and make something new – the rule is that anything I make has to be kept or given away, rather than sold. That’s partly just to make sure that I remember why I’m doing this, and as a reminder to try new things or go back to techniques I haven’t used in ages.

Today, I started out by playing around with some two-part epoxy putty, and there’s some jewellery hardening across the room – a stick pin, three brooches, and two choker slides. The brooches I’ve done before, but that was years ago, before I acquired a Proxxon drill for sanding and buffing. (Vorsprung-grade German engineering, slightly better than Dremel in its class.) There is almost no craftsman’s task I hate more than sanding things by hand, and consequently I’m not very good at it. Late tomorrow, or in a few days, they’ll be ready to paint & varnish, and we’ll see how they turn out.

After that, I started playing around with some colour/paper/glaze combinations I hadn’t tried before, and this was the result. It’s Ara dark bronze acrylic on Gmund bierpapier (Boc), with three coats of lightly gold-tinted Rheotech gloss gel glaze. I was rather impatient, and put the second & third glaze coats on when the first was touch-dry instead of properly clarified, but I rather like the clouded effect in this case – it looks like a faux-nori finish, which entertains me.

Bronze on bierpapier

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