11 10 2012


Tommie Howell is an award winning sculptor who resides in Connecticut.  While having no formal art education, he credits his Junior High School art teacher with instilling the desire to create things out of blobs of color or lumps of clay.  “I’ve always doodled, drawn, painted, and played around with art, but it wasn’t until my grad school roommate foisted (forced) a Sculpey III sampler pack on me in the 90’s that I found that thing for which I had been searching.”  Tommie admits that sculpting didn’t exactly come to him naturally, but it was something that he wanted to do badly enough to stick with it.

Stuck with it he has, and has made a name in the polymer clay and sculpting communities.  He has won awards for his figurative sculpture on both the national and local levels, his work has been shown in places from local galleries to the Bead Museum in Washington DC.  “I used to write more than I sculpted.  I still get emails from people who find old articles I had written about polymer clay safety or artistic ethics.  Finally I won a best in show award at a CHA event some years ago and was happy to be recognized for something other than having a big mouth.” Tommie has also taught in many venues around the country and we are pleased to have him join us at CFCF 2013.

Tommie lives and works with fellow artist Lynne Ann Schwarzenberg and her family.  They share together in the care for three highly eccentric canines and a couple of small rodents.  When not sculpting, teaching or assisting Lynne Ann, Tommie likes to keep up on current events, watch horror movies, and prepare for the zombie apocalypse.  His favorite quote is “Hold on a minute, I have to get some heads out of the oven.”

******   Download registration forms here and detailed workshop information here. ******

TOMMIE HOWELL – “I’VE BEEN FRAMED!” (4-hour workshop)       Sun. 6:30PM

HOWELL – Old Woman Face

In this workshop, students will be provided with a proportional blank face that they will build upon to create their own one of a kind sculpted face that will double as both a framed wall hanging or table top ornament and a piece of wearable art.  Students will learn basic art anatomy of the face and how to combine basic shapes into a complex, hand sculpted finished product.  All skill levels are welcome.  The workshop will not only produce a finished sculpt but will also provide techniques that can be used and built upon for many future projects.  The instructor will have a variety of sculpting tools to loan during class and for sale in the store.  Students are encouraged to bring any sculpting tools they own and while optional a pasta machine can be helpful for certain tasks.  All clay will be provided by Polyform.  Class will include a detailed handout that will cover not only the steps involved in the class but information on anatomy, tools, and a list of recommended products and suppliers to be used if the student chooses to further pursue sculpting as part of their polymer clay art. As each piece is one of a kind, photos provided are representative of what can be created and not meant to show exactly what will be made in the class.  NOTE: This workshop will only be taught once during CFCF 2013.


9 10 2012



Lindly’s roots go way back in the polymer clay world, which is one of the reasons she was selected in early 2012 to receive the Creative Pioneer and Innovator Award at CFCF’s February 2013 Conference in Laurel, MD.  Lindly is a founding member of the Potomac Polymer Clay Guild as well as the National Polymer Clay Guild.  She began teaching workshops way back in 1990 and continues to enjoy traveling around the world to lecture and inspire other artists.

Lindly Haunani

Her passion for food and cooking (I’ve heard she is a gourmet chef) provide a basis for her inspiration and is often expressed via color, construction techniques and form.  Her work is part of the permanent collections of the Racine Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Newark Museum of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Meinge International Museum in San Diego. She has a BFA in Printmaking from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA.

She is co-author of two books, the first with Pierrette Ashcroft,  Artist’s at Work: Polymer Clay Comes of Age and her latest book  Color Inspirations with Maggie Maggio.   Color Inspirations has quickly become the color reference manual for the polymer community and artists working in other mediums. She has starred in several video workshops and has been featured in numerous polymer and arts magazines, including Bead and Button Magazine.  Her work has appeared in more than fifty invitational and juried shows and was awarded the prestigious Niche Award in 2009.

At CFCF 2013, she is teaching a two-day Masterclass on Friday and Saturday, February 15-16, 2013 and two 4-hour workshops during the conference.  A special celebration will take place on Tuesday evening to celebrate her career and contributions to the creative world.  Come celebrate with us in February and honor Lindly.

******   Download registration forms here and detailed workshop information here. ******

LINDLY HAUNANI – Translucent Innovations – Exploring Folded Bead Forms (2-day pre-conference) Intermediate to advanced skill level (or confident beginner)

Master the art of designing and mixing scintillating vibrant and clear color palettes using translucent polymer clay. You will begin by making your own personalized translucent mix color swatch deck that will be used as a reference to create your personalized palette.
Lindly will guide you step by step as you make a set of color-coordinated canes that will feature both translucent clay blends and opaque accents. You will then use your canes to explore several different interlocking folded bead forms.
You will then choose- just one bead form or several? Alternating color or gradated color? Add something to your mix from the group “pool” or not? Once you make your beads for your necklace, you will learn how to make an embedded matching toggle clasp and learn about options for stringing your folded bead necklace.  Come prepared to have fun, laugh, and learn new approaches to working with polymer clay while increasing your color confidence.- And leave with a stunning, folded bead necklace.

HAUNANI – Bodacious Bubbles

LINDLY HAUNANI – Bodacious Bubbles: Keepsake Blade Holder (4-hour workshop) All Skill Levels   Mon. 1:00PM/Tues. 8:00AM

Lindly will share some of her insights into polymer clay color mixing and strategies for intensifying; de-saturating and/or skewing your rainbow Skinner blends. To help aid in your decision there will be dozens of samples on hand. Some of the possibilities include: going “gold”, softening the contrasts, pumping up the neon, cooling the look or adding warmth.

Using two specially prepared Skinner Blends you will learn how to make a laminate sheet of this dramatic textile inspired pattern. You will then make a magnetic, laced hinge blade cover = useful memento of color mixing possibilities and a 2013 Cabin Fever Clay Fest Keepsake.



13 09 2012

MARSHALL-Colorful pendant with Bling!

Ellen Marshall creates one-of-a-kind and limited-edition contemporary art jewelry featuring polymer clay.  She is inspired by art quilts, ceramics, graphic arts, and color.  Ceramic influences led her to explore surface design on polymer clay.   Ellen’s book, Polymer Clay Surface Design Recipes, published by Quarry, presents many of the surface techniques she has developed.  She is published in other books and magazines including Step By Step Beads and PolymerCafe.

Ellen is the founder and former chair of the Philadelphia Area Polymer Clay Guild and a  past president of the National Polymer Clay Guild, now International Polymer Clay Guild.  She was honored at IPCG’s first Synergy Conference with a life-time membership. She is  proficient in several beadweaving stitches such as peyote, herringbone, and right-angle weave and is now working on designing jewelry that incorporates both polymer and seed bead weaving.   She teaches polymer clay and beading crafts with the goal of inspiring others to discover and explore new directions in their art.

******   Download registration forms here and detailed workshop information here. ******

  • ELLEN MARSHALL Color, Surface Treatment, and A Little Bling  (Pre-conference)      Fri. 15 Feb.

In this one-day class you’ll create a sumptuously colorful pendant made extraordinary with the addition of a simple beaded accent.  You’ll be introduced to using acrylic dyes on polymer clay to produce a ceramic-like surface design.  Experience with beadweaving is helpful, but not required to make the beaded accent.


7 09 2012

CELORIOS ACEVES – Blooming Flower Disc

Whew!  Trying to keep up and cover all the bases is exhausting, but so worth it!  Thanks for your patience.  Now, on to the rest of the instructors for CFCF 2013.
Rosa Martha Celorio was born in Mexico City.  Studied History of Art and even if she didn’t work as an art historian,  her life has always been connected with art and creativity.  She began her career as a make up artist for the media and changed to jewelry making and teaching. She is a master Art Clay instructor and a certified PMC Artisan.  She was one of the few instructors invited to attend the first New Mokume Gane course at the Aida Chemicals headquarters in Japan. Teaching is one of her passions and she is the director of education of Art Clay Mexico. Her articles and work  have been featured in  renowned publications such as Art Jewelry and Metal Clay Artist Magazine.   She lives in Mexico City and teaches nationally and internationally.
******   Download registration forms here and detailed workshop information here. ******

ROSA MARTHA CELORIO ACEVES – Appliquéd Bisque Bead Pendant (Pre-conference)

Sun. 17 Feb

Rosa Martha brings us her metal clay expertise from her home in Mexico City.  In this workshop you will learn how to create a silver pendant using a bisque bead as a core. You will be playing with different forms of silver clay and different techniques to create a unique appliquéd pendant. Techniques you will learn include: Preparing and covering the bisque beads with paste, extruding silver clay tubes and using them as bails, seemless joining, working with silver paper, combining simple shapes to create more complex shapes, using the syringe, firing in a kiln and refiring with a torch, polishing, how to apply the patina to obtain an antique look.


6 09 2012

Marie will be teaching two 4-hour workshops at CFCF 2013.  She started on her creative journey with oil paints at the age of 10, after

SEGAL – Between the Space Canes

working with crayons, paints, and puzzles. Her love of crafts began with doing craft projects with her mother and watching her family do the hands-on work, turning each of their homes into beautiful living spaces.

Later, she began working with ceramics and learned much from some brilliant teachers at a progressive high school.  She was encouraged by her parents and continued to explore while working a “regular” day job. She met her husband, Howard, at one of her jobs and they continued their artistic pursuits together… he becoming her cheerleader.

Marie began creating with polymer and she and Howard coined it the “new age” modeling medium. They started selling their products, doing shows, swap meets, and home shows and teaching others how to use it. She had a thriving gift business with employees and her work was in showrooms on 5th avenue in New York and Los Angeles, selling to Nordstrom’s, Macy’s, Bullock’s and the Icing, just to name a few. She believes this helped move polymer clay in to the mainstream view.

Marie works primarily with Cernit polymer clay and loves its color palette, consistency, finish, hardness, and the extreme durability after baking. The porcelain effect of the clay reminds her she has come full circle from working with ceramics. This change has expanded her creative abilities beyond her expectations and opened new areas that she believes might not have happened without the change.

Marie still makes, writes, sells, teaches, and operates several on line store with her husband, Howard, and spends as much time as possible with her grand children.  In her words, “my life is good!!!”

******   Download registration forms here and detailed workshop information here. ******

  • MARIE SEGAL – SHADEPLAY CANING (4-hour workshop)     □ Tues. 8:00AM

SEGAL-Shadeplay samples

For those sculptors or beginning clayers who want to learn about caning, this class is for you.  Marie will teach you about creating beautifully shaded canes using the skinner blend.

You will learn about many ways to use and  play with them in your designs including numerous ways of laying out your design.Specific canes to be made are the spotted shaded cane and translucent shaded cane.    NOTE: This workshop will be taught only once during CFCF 2013.

  • MARIE SEGAL- BETWEEN THE SPACE CANES (4-hour workshop)   □  Wed. 8:00AM

Marie will present this 4-hour class on cutting, re-assembling, and distorting a shaded cane that will give you the image of painted slabs or slices. These slices can be used for petals, coverables, and for applying and enhancing other pieces of your work. They can even be combined into other canes. They have a somewhat fabric like feel to them and at certain stages in the construction can be made in to sheets of faux fabric.

We will build the primary cane, add, cut, hack, and insert components and you will walk away with at least one star brooche. She will also show you how to design and develop other canes, apply canes to forms, and build other unique designs and petals. NOTE: This workshop will be taught only once during CFCF 2013.



5 09 2012

Just in case you’ve been wondering, I somehow managed to get myself locked out of this blog…don’t ask me how.  I am just grateful

ROBERTS BENZON – Glazed Stoneware Beads

that I was finally able to return to bring you more instructor offerings for CFCF 2013!  Welcome!

Jana Roberts Benzon emerged onto the polymer scene nearly ten years ago with a distinctive milefiori style all her own. We at CFCF are pleased to have her return yet again, teaching both a pre-conference as well as a 4-hour conference workshop.  She has worked in several different media throughout her creative life, but her focus turned to polymer clay when she discovered its limitless creative potential.  She has been a slave to polymer clay ever since, creating detailed, intricate work from an intuitive, emotional and very personal ‘place’.    From those canes, Jana loves creating interesting, dimensional jewelry pieces often evocative of Arabic or old world designs.  While she’ll never leave the geometric symmetry of caning, these days she’s having a great time exploring the world of organic forms.  Jana teaches workshops internationally, and has been published in numerous online and print media articles and features.   She has received awards in several competitions and sells her work through art galleries. She lives and creates in the shadows of the majestic Wasatch Mountain Range of Utah.

******   Download registration forms here and detailed workshop information here. ******

  • JANA ROBERTS BENZON  – GLAZED STONEWARE BEADS (Pre-conference)   Sat. 16 Feb.

You’ve long been asking for this workshop, and so Jana is happy to be able to finally introduce it as a pre-conference workshop to Cabin Fever Clay Festival 2013!   You’ll begin this workshop by learning to create “sleight of hand”, interesting (and head-scratch inducing!) bead shapes, and then perform the magic required to turn them into convincing faux stoneware (so convincing, she has had ceramic artists think they were the real thing ).   Join Jana for some free-flowing-faux fun as we experiment with colors, shapes and finishes, while learning new skill sets to add to your polymer-knowledge arsenal!


ROBERTS BENZON – Wruffled Whimsy

Oh boy, is this stuff ever fun!  This brand new style of Jana’s seems custom made for fluttery, whimsical earrings that change appearance as their wearer moves.   While this technique is conducive to pendants, brooches and other décor, we’ll focus on making earrings in varying styles and colors.   Be among the first to experience this uber-fun workshop, and join Jana for an out of the box learning experience!


28 08 2012
Doreen is another instructor who returns to Cabin Fever Clay Fest, bringing her colorful imagination and characters to share.  She

GAY-KASSEL – Ganesha Tryptich

began her career in illustration and design and then found another love in polymer clay.  She creates her fanciful creatures made of polymer and paper clay, found objects, wire, glitter, and paint. She looks forward to working in her studio every day and feels fortunate to be able to create her whimsical characters.

Her inspiration comes from her love of  E.H. Shepard (The Wind in the Willows illustrator), the Brothers Grimm, William Holbrook Beard, vintage toys and wonderful books of her youth.
Her many years as a children’s book illustrator has also given her inspiration to grow her characters.  She crafts each creature and tile story out of polymer and multiple coats of oil paints, giving them attitude and emotion. Her images have been used for books, magazines, toys, puzzles, posters, greeting cards, Christmas ornaments and textiles, with clients ranging from National Geographic, Unicef and the Smithsonian to HBO, People and Newsweek magazines.   She creates her quirky creatures in her Hopewell, New Jersey studio/storefront.

******   Download registration forms here and detailed workshop information here. ******

  • DOREEN GAY-KASSELL – GANESHA TRIPTYCH (Pre-conference)   Sat. 16 Feb. 

Create an iconic object of art out of polymer. In this class we transform a pre-made wooden triptych; we’ll wrap the wood with a thin veneer of polymer and then sculpt the image of Ganesha extending onto the three panels. The sculpting process is broken down into simple steps and she always circulates through the classroom, helping each student individually, so that even if you’re not a sculptor this is a perfectly doable piece! After the image and decorative elements are sculpted and baked, the piece is painted with burnt umber oil paint, which is rubbed off and then colored oil paints are applied and wiped off to achieve a subtle, vintage feel. Ganesh is revered as the Remover of Obstacles and Lord of Beginnings, patron of arts and sciences, and the dIva of intellect and wisdom.


KASSEL -BIRD AND BEAST ORNAMENTSIn this workshop, you’ll create your favorite avian & or four legged creatures in this workshop. Using simple sculpting techniques you’ll make your own flock of birds, pack of dogs, warren of rabbits, any beast of your choice! Sculpted over glass ornaments with polymer, the technique is full of texture and surface embellishment. After the ornament is sculpted, it’s baked, painted & rubbed with multiple coats of oil paints to achieve a vintage feel.
No worries if you don’t consider yourself a sculptor, she’ll break down the process into reasonable steps. Her students have been thrilled with their creations even if they were a little unsure about sculpting. NOTE: This workshop will only be taught once during CFCF 2013.

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