|Kokopelli Ornament is available at MelodyODesigns at Etsy|
The first is 3 1/2 inch tall version of Kokopelli made from terracotta colored polymer clay with the addition of some "magical" Sedona Red Rock Dirt in the matrix. He is decorated with tiny slices of turquoise and terracotta colored canes. Kokopelli is an iconic image of the American Southwest. There are many legends and much folklore that surround the beloved flute-playing hunchback. According to Navajo legend, Kokopelli is a God of harvest and plenty. Legend has it that this "Casanova of the Cliff Dwellers" was also a bit of a rascal and trickster and he is sometimes thought of as a fertility deity.
I think it's interesting to see behind the scenes studio photos to see how things are made and what interesting tools are used. Below is a photo of some of the materials and supplies used in making the Kokopelli ornament.
To gently "nudge" edges of cut polymer clay pieces into shape I use two tools I made from round toothpicks by dipping them several times into "Tool Magic", a heavy duty liquid rubber coating that is sold to apply to tips of pliers to help cushion them protect them from marring the finish of wire. I consider these two toothpick tools indispensable for finishing off and smoothing cut edges and for straightening out little "oops" bulges.
I use rough 36 grit sandpaper to press into the clay surface to give it a rustic terracotta look. Using the end of a tiny syringe to gently poke sideways into a cut canes slice helps me to place them more precisely and doesn't mar the surface.
The round and triangular terracotta and turquoise decorations are made from caned slices. For those who are not familiar with caning, caning is a labor-intensive construction technique where colored rods of clay are laid horizontally forming a complex pattern from which a thin slice is cut from the end allowing the pattern to be seen. It is borrowed from the glassmaking technique used to create millefiori beads.
Last season I added the following four disc mini-ornaments to my MelodyODesigns Southwestern Ornament Collection and one of the discs also contains an image of Kokopelli. You can tell he's one of my favorite Southwestern images!
Please click to read a blog post on my Cat Angel Christmas ornaments and animal shelter Christmas tree