Master Muses!



Anne Mitchell Anne Mitchell started her creative career over 20 years ago as a professional lighting designer. Looking for another outlet for her artistic energies, Anne began teaching chain making and metal working approximately eight years ago for just pure enjoyment. During those years, Anne found that the creative outlet provided by teaching, as well as a consistent demand for her classes was too alluring to deny. Leaving lighting behind in 2003, Anne is now a full-time designer, teacher, and author. Her classes always sell out at the Bead & Button Show. She was the recipient of Bead and Button's Excellence in Bead Artistry in 2009. She is a dynamic teacher who always pushes the technical and artistic limits with her designs.

Lora HartPMC Connection Senior Instructor Lora Hart began working with metal clay at the turn of the century. After nearly 20 years as a busy make-up artist in the entertainment industry, an actor's strike put her career onhold. Four happily creative years later, she began a new and fulfilling life as an instructor in the greater Los Angeles area. Working out of her quaint Venice Beach Studio, Lora is honored that her work has been included in many publications including The PMC Guild Annual, Barbara Becker Simon’s Metal Clay Beads, Sherri Haab’s Metal Clay and Mixed Media Jewelry and Holly Gage’s The Art and Design of Metal Clay Jewelry. This year, Lora has begun an online challenge to make a Ring A Day and started work on the first level of The Master’s Registry.

Patrik KusekPatrik Kusek has been in the design and fashion industry for over 20 years and currently teaches metal clay classes and workshops in the San Francisco Bay Area as well as nationally. He is a senior PMC® instructor who teaches for Rio Grande and his work has appeared in numerous publications including Art Jewelry, Lapidary Journal, MJSA, and various books. He is a member of SNAG, ACC and the PMC Guild. Patrik is the 1st place Saul Bell winner of the 2007 PMC category.

Barbara Becker Simon Barbara Becker Simon earned a BS in Art Education and an MFA in Metalwork and Jewelry. She has been a goldsmith for over 40 years and taught at the University of Wisconsin-Menomonie and Iowa State University. Barbara travels the US teaching lampwork & metal clay workshops as Senior Instructor for Rio Grande. Her work appears in Creative Metal Clay Jewelry: Techniques, Projects, and Inspiration New Directions in Metal Clay, (Wire), The Art of Metal Clay, (Haab), and PMC Decade and PMC Technic, (McCreight), among others. In April 2009, Lark Books published her book, Metal Clay Beads. Barbara is known internationally for her lampworked glass beads & jewelry. Contemporary Lampworking by Bandhu Dunham features Barbara’s work on the cover. Formed of Fire (Dunham), Beads of Glass (Jenkins), and 1000 Glass Beads, (Lark) also features her beads. Barbara work is on display in Washington DC, Glendale, AZ, & Japan.

Donna Penoyer Donna Penoyer started out her artistic endeavors learning to be a poet. Instead she became a stilt walker, married a professional fool, and today is known as "The Whistle Lady” for her sculptural, wearable metal clay whistles. Donna has been working in PMC since 2005, is a founding member of the Western PA Chapter of the PMC Guild. She teaches nationally at The Bead & Button Show, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Touchstone Center for Crafts, and Society for Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh. She has written articles for PolymerCAFÉ and Art Jewelry magazines, and her work may be seen in Robert Dancik’s book Amulets and Talismans and other upcoming publications. Donna’s whistle ring "Journey Companion” is currently on the cover of the 2009 edition of the PMC Guild Annual 3.

Ruth BaillieRuth Baillie started making metal clay jewelry in 2005. Her creations always begin from a positive emotion. She hopes the wearer will feel this energy, thus creating jewelry that adorns and also lifts your spirits. Certified in metal clay, she has also studied Silver Smithing at Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts and other art/jewelry schools. She has exhibited in several juried competitions, receiving awards for her silver clay creations. Her work has appeared in PMC Guild Annual, Sonoma Magazine and Art Jewelry Magazine. In addition, she has written step-by-step projects for LJAJM. She is a member of: Society of North American Goldsmith, PMC Guild and Art Clay Society. Ruth works from a home studio in Northern California, where she and her husband grow Merlot grapes. They share the vineyard with their parrot, Harold and many other birds. These birds are a great source of inspiration for Ruth’s Birdland Creations.

Angela CrispinAngela Baduel-Crispin is a jewelry designer and maker living in the Northwestern coast of France where she teaches metal clay and makes her line of handmade, one-of-a-kind jewelry under the name "L'Ange Est Là". Angela is passionate about her work and about sharing her knowledge. To this effect, Angela teaches metal clay under her own program, is the president of the Guilde PMC Francophone, is Instructor’s Teacher for Art Clay, France, and is a contributor to Metal Clay Artist Magazine. Angela’s work has been published in a number of respected books and magazines in the field within the United States and Europe. She is currently one of the 5 finalists in the Saul Bell 2010 Design Award, metal clay category.

Vickie Hallmark Bridging many medias, Vickie Hallmark pursues her artistic muses in whichever direction calls: metal, glass or fiber. This cross-pollination of different ideas, coupled with her experimental nature as a research scientist, leads Hallmark to combine materials in novel ways. Metal over glass is a particular fascination, be it electroformed copper over lamp worked beads or silver clay formed around enameled-painted tiles.Over the last decade, Hallmark's work has been exhibited in prestigious juried fine craft shows, including Craft Forms, Crafts National, and Materials: Hard & Soft. Chosen as a Glasscraft Emerging Artist in 2007, images of her beads have appeared in The Flow, The Glass Bead, and Bead Release 3, an annual compendium of the year's best beads. Metal Clay Artist and Metal Clay Today have showcased her metal clay jewelry. The best of Hallmark's creations are preserved in both private and museum collections.

RobertDancikRobert Dancik holds a Masters degree in sculpture and a BA in fine art and has been an artist/teacher for more than 30 years. He is presently an adjunct professor of education at Pace University, and has taught people from kindergarten to graduate school while exhibiting his jewelry and sculpture in museums and galleries across the US and in Europe, Japan, and Australia. He teaches workshops at art centers in the US and abroad including Penland, NC; Arrowmont, TN; Metalwerx, MA;   Touchstone Center for Crafts, PA; Victoria College of Art, Australia; Brookfield Craft Center, CT; and Mid Cornwall School of Jewelry (UK) to name a few. His work is in numerous collections including the Wustum Museum of Art, Boeringer- Ingleheim International, Schamberger International, Mitsubishi International, Japan and the Gregg Museum of Art and Design. He has artwork published in many books including "PMC Decade", "Fine Art of the Tin Can", "1000 Rings", "The Art of Resin Jewelry," and "Creative Metal Clay Jewelry", and magazines including "Niche", "Art Jewelry", "Lapidary Journal" and "Perspectives". Robert is the originator of Faux Bone™, a new, wonderful material for artists involved in jewelry, artist's books, sculpture, and many other artistic disciplines. He lives in Oxford, CT where he is an avid cook (I didn't say good) and collector of toys, maps, and compasses.

Tonya_headshotTonya Davidson began her artistic career as an Interior Designer. She has also been a full-time bead artist and she owned two paint-your-own pottery studios for 10 years. During this time she was introduced to PMC and began teaching this out of her stores in 1997. In 2000, she became one of six of the first Senior instructors selected to represent Art Clay World. From 2002-2006, she was a Senior Instructor for PMC Connection. Currently she is a Senior Instructor for Rio Rewards. She is well versed in mixed-media: lampwork glass, cast glass, metalsmithing, fiber arts, ceramics, enameling, and more which helps her to cross-over techniques and expand her creative possiblities. She is also the co-owner of Whole Lotta Whimsy which started in 2002 out of a need to help students find excellent quality tools and supplies at great prices and with fantastic customer service. Tonya has been an chapter author in PMC Technic, Precious Metal Clay in Mixed Media, Fired Up and featured in Pure Silver Metal Clay Beads, PMC Studio 1, and 2, Step by Step Beads by Lapidary Journal, Beadwork, and Popular Ceramics. She has taught all over the U.S. including at Bead and Button. She has been a presenter at the PMC Guild Conferences 2004, 2006, 2008 and the upcoming 2010 event as well as 7 CCSA conferences.

What are the Master Muses?

They are 9 amazing artists on Whole Lotta Whimsy's exclusive design team. They will be submitting 60 weeks of consecutive tutorials on different challenges covering themes, techniques, and materials. Join us to learn a new technique, use a new material, or try something new and exciting.

Tutorial synopsis will be featured on the blog every Wednesday, by a single Master. 3-4 weeks later, a full tutorial will be available on Whole Lotta Whimsy for purchase. Unlike any book or magazine, these tutorials will cover every step in full detail, including materials used, step-by-step, and even finishing techniques used. Many of the projects will be primers for those going through the Master's Registry program as well.

We hope you will join us weekly to be inspired to create your own works of art. Even taking the challenge along with the Master Muses and expanding your skills or finding something to refill your creative well.

It all starts tomorrow, Wednesday January 28th. I hope you'll spread the word. Whole Lotta Whimsy is proud to give the creative community the ability to share the works of these fantastic artists, their years of experience, and collective energy.

68 Responses to Master Muses!

  1. Congratulations and thank you to Tonya and all the Master Muses! It's a brilliant idea that will be brought to life by an extremely talented design and instruction team. Way to go!!!

  2. Oh, my goodness, Tonya! You've created a wonderful commune of expertise and creativity from which we can all learn so very much. Brilliant idea, and brilliant group of participants who will bring different perspectives to bear on metal clay's incredibly broad potential!
    Brava to you and to your team of Master Muses!

  3. This is perfect for those of us who can't travel to classes. Thank you, Tonya. You are so generous with your knowledge, and now we get to learn from many others as well.

  4. Sounds like a fabulous idea (hope I can afford it!) Why not have a forum/ chat with the muse after the tutorial so people can discuss any difficulties they have…..truly interactive!

  5. I am up for the challenge and am thankful for the artist's desire to sharing their knowledge and creativity. The diversity in backgrounds of all of the muses is facinating and proof that art can be for everyone. Thank you all!

  6. Congratulations Tonya, what a fantastic Idea. A way to bring new ideas into the world of people working alone in their studios! I will love to check every Wednesday! I can't Wait!!!

  7. This is a GREAT idea!!! I'm a relative newbie to metal clays and love the idea of the tutorials, I'm not always sure what direction to go in and having a tutorial will hopefuly help me learn new skills. Looking forward to seeing what these great artists come up with I admire their work!

  8. Hello, I am new to the metal clay world (and very much addicted to it :)) and just got introduced to your site and your store. I made my first purchase from your store a few weeks ago and was very-very happy with the quality of the products and the service. Thanks for introducing this program. This will definitely help me in expanding my horizon on metal clay art. :)

  9. Ok . . . all these changes, challenges and new ideas – I'm a little scared :)
    YEAH for all of us that enjoy you so much – for your incredible possibilities. Thank you!

  10. Tonya, this is AWESOME!!! Girlfriend, you da bomb!! You've pulled together a FANTABULOUS team of Masters and now I'm so looking forward to Wednesdays!

  11. This looks really great! It will be fun to be challenged and learn new techniques at the same time. Not being near many classes this will be a big help in expanding my skills. Thanks for starting this!

  12. Great selection of Masters, and a wonderful idea. I will look forward to each Wednesday and get my students and ACS/PMC Chapter to join in as well. Thank you for this great opportunity!

  13. I'm just staring in Metal Clay and to have a chance to learn from all these talented experts is very exciting.

  14. Congratulations Tonya, this is so wonderful. Can't wait to watch and learn. Such a talented great group of Masters.

  15. Tonya- It is wonderful to see how you are never satisfied with the status quo – you are always pushing the envelope trying new things. This idea is a great way to expand never ending need for education. I especially like the diversity of teachers you have selected. What a perfect idea! Thank you.

  16. Ah, this is the great announcement secret! I'll be watching. It is a great idea, as usual. Cheers to you, Tonya!

  17. What a great group of "muses"!! Thank you Tonya for allowing all of us to participate in such a great endeavor.
    Looking forward to the next 60 weeks of tutorials!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Ann and Stan Rosier
    San Diego, CA

  18. Tonya,
    This is the best!! A very impressive gathering of gifted, generous and inspiring artists. I look forward to the upcoming tutorials.

  19. Wow, Tanya, what a great idea. I'm looking forward to learning new things from this great group of talented artists.

  20. Tania,this is a wonderful idea! As I live so far away I do not have much oportunity
    to take classes very often. So am looking forward to learning new things from the masters.
    I am going for the masters program so therefore will enjoy fresh. Ideas from those who are

  21. Tonya, You have done it again! Raised the bar a notch higher. I'm looking forward to the collective knowledge this group has to offer!

  22. What an exciting opportunity! Once again Whole Lotta Whimsey goes over the top in supporting customers. Your innovation is what separates you from the others.

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