Monday, January 17, 2022

Big Arts Day Out and Harcourts Challenge - Waitangi Weekend 2022

This should be a great event over the Waitangi Weekend. I have two entries submitted for the Harcourts Challenge, this years theme is 'Looking Back, Looking Forward'. I will also have a stand in the other BADO hall, where I will be selling a selection of mosaics and Swirl-StoNZ.  In addition, I will be demonstrating how I make the Swirl-StoNZ, and selling $1 raffle tickets to win the picture below. The winning ticket will be drawn at 3.30pm, half an hour before the event closes, on Sunday 6 February 2022.


Friday, January 14, 2022

WhangaCraft - name claimed 14.01.2021

I have searched on Google and cannot find any trace of 'WhangaCraft' being used as a trade name. I am posting this to mark my claim, as I may use this name for selling my creations, especially at the local markets. It seems appropiate, as my work will be   

  1. hand crafted, and 
  2. designed and made by myself in Whangamata

[I had to find an alternative to the CFdesignz that I had planned on using, as I have discovered that this is already taken]

Friday, December 31, 2021

Review of 2021

I usually do a review of the year that has been on New Years Eve, however, there is not much to review this year.

Apart from the the major milestone at the end of June, of leaving my paid employment to follow my dream of being a full time artist, Covid has has put a stop to nearly everything else.

I decided early in November to focus on mosaic art and design, so I know where my plans lie for 2022, I just need to ensure that my opportunities to sell are not thwarted by any Covid restrictions that may be imposed.

Thursday, December 16, 2021

Photo in the Hauraki Coromandel Post 16.12.2021

I got quite shock this morning, when I was looking through the local paper, to suddenly see myself staring back.

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Polymer clay UV light fastness trial

For some time I have felt it is a shame that I cannot sell my polymer clay mosaics/creations for outdoor use, as the colours will fade if exposed long term to sunlight. How much and how quickly this will happen, I do not know, so I have decided to set up a trial. I wanted to get this going now, as we are just entering the summer months (in New Zealand) and our sunlight is extremely harsh, so it will be a good test.

I am currently using the New Zealand made brand of polymer clay, called Du-Kit, as it has been hard to get Sculpey Premo (my prefered brand) since the Covid Lockdowns. To save mixing colours, I am using the ends of some canes that were made for a project, which have a range of colour blends within a particular hue (shown to the left in the photo below). I have also included some neutral colours (shown to the right in the photo below): black, grey made from 50% black and 50% white, white, pearl, transluscent and Super Sculpey (grey). 

The polymer clay tiles have been stuck and grouted to the back of a couple of ceramic wall tiles, as this was all that I readily had to hand. 

The top half of the coloured tiles have been masked off with opaque black plastic tape. I am hoping this will hold up to the long term effects of the weather.

There are two rows of tiles in the neutral colours. The top half of the top row has been masked off with opaque black plastic tape. The bottom row has been used to test UV protective varnish; the upper half of the bottom row has 2 layers of Josefine Very Matt Varnish and the bottom half has 2 layers of Josefine Satin Varnish.

Today (8th December 2021) I have placed the trial tiles on the bottom rail of the garden fence that gets plenty of sunshine during the day.

I plan to check how much colour fading has occurred after 1 month, 3 months, 6 months and 12 months. Then, depending on the results, I may continue to monitor.

Monday, December 6, 2021

Dot Painting versus Dot Mosaic

A. Dot Painting

B. Dot Mosaic

I finally got the chance to show my two pictures, both of the same flower design, one done by painting the dots (A) and the other done with round mosaic tiles (B). I wanted to get public opinion as to which was preferred. There were enough people at the Art in the Park event to get a reasonable response. Of the 74 votes cast, the results were:

A. Dot Painting - 34%

B. Dot Mosaic    - 66%

I am happy with the result, as I did not enjoy doing the dot painting, which is a very different technique to the dot mosaics that I love creating. The result of two thirds in favour of the dot mosaic validates my decision to continue with mosaics.

Sunday, December 5, 2021

Photos from Art in the Park

We were so lucky with the weather, which had been rainy all week. It could not have been better on the day for this event. There were lots of visitors, soaking up the wonderful atmosphere in the grounds of Bushlands. Art, music, wine, food, and sales - what a perfect day!

This was my set up

Some general shots

and me

This photo is courtesy of the Arts Collective Whangamata

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Art in the Park - Sunday 5 December 2021

Really looking forward to taking part in this, as so many other events have been cancelled this year, due to Covid 19. Fingers crossed it all goes to plan, and the weather is kind to us.


Friday, November 26, 2021

"She loved yellow flowers"

Today, it is a year since my mother passed, so I thought it fitting to present the mosaic that I did in remembrance of her. It was the first piece of mosaic art created in my studio since I became a full-time artist back in July of this year. 

It is titled “She loved yellow flowers” because when my husband met my mother for the first time, he gave her a bouquet of yellow flowers. I remember my mother saying that yellow flowers were her favourite. Now, whenever I look at this mosaic or any other yellow flowers, it always makes me think fondly of her.


Monday, November 1, 2021

Figuring out the way forward

Since leaving my job at the end of June, I have spent the last four months considering, researching and trial designing many different and varied creative ideas.

For various reasons, either in terms of design/manufacture or selling (all major markets in the region have closed down due to Covid 19 restrictions), I am no further forward. I have even considered changing medium but I keep coming back to polymer clay mosaics. I think this is because it is where my enjoyment, satisfaction and skill lies. So, now I am finally settled on my way forward, I will try and develop my mosaics to be more profitable.

In the New Year, I will re-brand my website, simply as Claire Fairweather – Mosaic Art and Design. I will create the ‘mosaic art’ that I so love to do, and the ‘design’ allows me the freedom to include other designed items, whether they include mosaic or not.