12 06 2017


Summer is upon us and many plans are in place.  For those attending MCC, we are so pleased and looking forward to having both Kathleen Dustin and Lynne Ann Schwarzenberg with us later this month for some intensive creative workshops.  There are still spaces available in Lynne Ann’s Butterfly Wing and Filigree workshops and Kathleen’s Big Bead workshop.  In this day of technology, we remind artists that there is no comparison to taking a workshop in person from a veteran instructor.

Don’t miss your chance: – CLICK THIS LINK TO REGISTER NOW.

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Honoring Kathleen: Kathleen has been teaching for a long time – earlier on at the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, VA and traveling the world to bring this medium to others.  She is known to have instructed many of the pioneers in the polymer community (Nan Roche and Lindly Haunani, to name just two), so is no doubt one of the most respected instructors and polymer artists around.  Over the years, we’ve seen her work grow from inspirational to amazing.  She’s won awards and has had her work on exhibit in some of the most prestigious galleries and venues – becoming one of the first to raise polymer to the level of art. For this, we will all be grateful and would like to celebrate her.

As we celebrate our 5th Master Class Camp, we have chosen to honor this amazing artist on Saturday evening, June 24, 2017 with a small award celebration and auction. We invite members of the polymer community to join us for the evening and share your story of how Kathleen has influenced your life and your work.

To share your story with Kathleen and/or attend the celebration, PLEASE CLICK THIS LINK NOW. 


17 03 2017

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Creative Arts Fests is going on 11 years of bringing first rate instructors to you.  We’ve had 10 Cabin Fever events, soon our 5th Master Class Camp, and two years of Fall Foliage Festival.  We’ve seen some of the work up close and personal, but we’d like to see how far you’ve  come too!

If you’ve attended any of these Creative Arts Fests events and want more people to see what you’ve accomplished, send us your pictures! Photos of your work may show up on our blog or Facebook page!  A number of our earlier students have gone on to teach and have their work published in magazines or on PCD.  We are so pleased and proud of you all!

So, if you’ve got something you want to share, send your .jpg photos to: creativeartsfests@yahoo.com with the subject line: (your name) and title of your work.  Please include info on what event you attended, the year, and who your teacher was.  Don’t be shy – this will help encourage others to explore their talents.

Can’t wait to see what you’ve done!


16 03 2017

Time to plan for your summer get-a-way! Being able to actually sit down for a few hours to work on my craft is a luxury these days – I’ve got a 6 1/2 year old who demands my attention constantly.  So, I, too, plan to set aside a couple of days in late June to learn from two masters – Kathleen Dustin and Robert Dancik.  They are teaching independently, but could very easily combine their work into collaborative pieces.  Can you just imagine what they would look like???

So, time to buckle down and register as soon as possible as spaces are filling quickly!  Follow this link to the workshop page with a link to the registration form and get ready for an exciting beginning to your Summer!



15 03 2017

If you have never taken a workshop from Robert Dancik, it’s time to start.  He will be joining us for the 5th Master Class Camp, June 23-26, 2017, in Laurel, MD.  Robert is not only charming, but he is and artist with a vision and the ability to create unique one-of-a-kind pieces. Registration will open to the general public tomorrow.

Robert will be teaching To Die For: Die Forming with Polymer clay and Mixed Materials (June 23-24) and Concrete : Not Just for Sidewalks Anymore (June 25-26.)

Below are the descriptions of workshops Robert will be teaching:

To Die For: Die Forming with Polymer Clay and Mixed Media Material (Fri/Sat June 23-24, 2017)

Learn an easy way to die form and if desired, use the actual die as part of your final piece.  You will use the easy to cut and work Faux Bone to form your die – the part you press your metal into – and then cut away part of the Faux Bone leaving behind the section you want to include in your finished piece.  Then you can easily attach your findings to the Faux bone with no soldering or special tools.

If you use the die-formed metal without the Faux Bone, you can turn your piece into a hinged locket, a focal bead or use it as a mold for polymer clay, concrete, epoxy resin, metal clay, epoxy putty or hollow Plexiglas beads.

Additional techniques and procedures you will learn include (but are not limited to), how to texture and fold-form your metal before die forming; cold connections including several riveting techniques, micro-fasteners, prongs and tabs and easy hinges to form a locket, hinged bracelet or hinged pendant.

You will also learn that you DO NOT need an expensive press to do die forming!  All you need is an inexpensive vice and you’re on your way to all sorts of possibilities.

This class will allow you to broaden and deepen the possibilities for your work and increase the range of your artist’s voice.

Concrete : Not Just for Sidewalks Anymore (Sun/Mon June 25-26, 2017)

As unlikely as concrete for jewelry may seem, it is easy to use, extremely versatile, unbelievably inexpensive and….  surprisingly lightweight.   In fact it is lighter in weight then stone, resin or metal of comparable size and this makes it perfect for jewelry and other forms of personal adornment as well as small sculpture and utilitarian objects.

It can be pigmented in numerous ways and the surface can be finished with a variety of textures from very rough to smooth to polished!  No special tools or equipment are needed and all materials will be provided.

In this workshop, you will learn how to set your polymer clay work in concrete and the concrete pieces you make in polymer clay.  In fact, you will be able to “set” virtually any object in the concrete withoout the need for a bezel or finding – however we’ll use those in the concrete as well.  Materials such as found objects, metal, glass, ephemera, gemstones, bone, enamels and of course polymer clay can be “trapped in the concrete with no fasteners or mechanical means.

The concrete we will be using is extremely strong even when made as thin as 1/16 inch thick.  It can be cast in rubber stamps, candy and baking molds, polymer clay, any silicone mold – both those you make and buy and many other items you have around your studio or home.

We will start by making non-soldered boxes as in one of the examples pictured here.  These can then be filled with concrete (or polymer clay, resins or any combination of these) and include virtually any material or found object you please.  We will also delve into methods of setting your creations using various cold connections such as rivets, tabs, prongs, etc, which will allow you to combine them with any other materials or objects you may work with.

Additionally, we will talk about the references that are inherent in using a material like concrete such as permanence, rigidity, protection and obstacle and how you can incorporate those references in the narrative of your work.

All these materials, techniques and procedures are applicable to work you may already be doing or they may open the door to work you may want to pursue in the future.


9 03 2017

Anyone who has been around polymer clay for a while knows that the person whose work we all aspire to emulate most is none other than Kathleen Dustin.  If you talk with some of the seasoned professionals such as Nan Roche, Lindly Haunani, and others, they will tell you that one of their first teachers was Kathleen Dustin.

It is with great joy that we announce Kathleen will be joining us for 4 days, June 23-26, 2017 and teaching two 2-day Master workshops this year.  Those workshops are: WORKING OUTSIDE THE BOX: PURSES IN UNUSUAL SHAPES (June 23-24) and LARGE HOLLOW POLYMER BEADS (June 25-26).

Registration will be opening soon and we anticipate the slots to fill quickly, so please watch closely for the announcement in the next few days.  Below are the descriptions of the workshops, so plan well.  It’s going to be an amazing ride!  Location and other instructors TBA.

Below are the descriptions of what Kathleen will be teaching:


2-day workshop for all levels except beginner (know how to make Skinner blend and simple canes.)

Polymer clay enables us to make containers in any shape we wish so why do we feel limited to making a purse that is rectangular? Kathleen discusses shape design principles and leads students through making an interior mold and a container with inside rim and attached cord like her purses. Students design their own shapes, colors and embellishments.

LARGE HOLLOW POLYMER BEADS (Sun/Mon June 25-26, 2017)

2-day workshop for all levels except beginner (know how to make a Skinner blend and simple canes).

It’s wonderful when large beads can be visually statement-making, but it’s not enjoyable  when they are too heavy to wear comfortably. In this workshop, Kathleen will teach constructing and assembling large light-weight hollow beads in organic/geometric shapes, then covering them with polymer patterns using a variety of techniques. As in her other workshops, Kathleen will also discuss basic design principles as she leads students through inventing and making their own beads.

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