View Full Version : Structured critique, please

10-02-2004, 03:07 PM
This is a flat tab bead about 30 x 25mm. It has sold but I know it can be better and I want to improve my layered beads. I want to have more depth and I don't know what. I have shown pics of both front and back. Anyone? - Everyone? - any ideas? Thanks to all.

10-02-2004, 03:54 PM
Well I don't know how much help I can be...but ...the one thing that came to me was that maybe if your dots were clear they would give the magnification effect and that would give more variation of the surface. Nice colors!

10-02-2004, 04:01 PM
I really like the colors.
If I want more depth, I make a thicker coat of clear, like !ngredh said, if the dots were clear you would get more magnification on those spots. If you had thick clear coat you could still have your pink dots on top of that.

10-02-2004, 04:04 PM
Patty- You have a lot working in this bead that's good, including keeping a good contrast (black and metallic). I like the line of dots, too- though try it in a more contrasting color. Black perhaps?

Comment 1: If you want more depth, the solution is simple....you have to provide more depth. Add more layers, being aware to plan them so that you can still see parts of the bottom layer.

Comment 2: I think this bead would benefit from a more refined shape- push yourself make your top and bottom edges parallel and your side edges parallel. The shape you have is good, but it can be better. Also work on the corners- the top corners (in terms of the degree of roundedness of the angle) should match, and the bottom corners should match. I know that's hard to do, but push yourself... you can improve on this- I've seen your beads and you'll be able to- and that's also what makes rectangular tab beads a little more difficult than ones with rounded edges. A small improvement in shape will make the finished piece much more striking.

Comment 3: That said, I think the way you photographed this bead makes it look like it has less of a refined shape than it does. The curved copper wire is distracting, especially since it's brighter than some parts of the bead, so the eye doesn't focus on the bead, but is instead drawn of the picture. Try standing it up on edge (which is a good test for a good shape), or using a piece of rubber eraser (or silly putty or similar) on the back side of the bead to hold it up for photography.

I hope this helps you. Post your next attempts!!!

10-02-2004, 04:51 PM
Another way to photograph beads that won't stand up is to pull a stringer of clear boro, stand it up by sticking it into a piece of styrofoam, and sliding the bead onto it.
The clear boro will more or less disappear in the picture.

Nice bead, I really like the colors, but I do agree that the shape could be more refined. I also think that clear dots would give a nice magnifying effect.

10-02-2004, 05:09 PM
If you want more depth than maybe not a black base. Try layering some lighter opaques with transparents then the silver and clear. Just a thought.


10-02-2004, 09:20 PM
Thanks all! :D I have some dicro in this bead and I'm always afraid of burning it so I was trying to work fast! LOL. What if I used an ink blue base, then silver, then dicro, then encase, then decorate. I have four layers and it doesn't look like it. Is it the shape? When you suggest clear dots - do you mean clear on top of the ruby or just clear? Should I have done more after these four steps, perhaps?

I agree, Margaretz, that I should improve on the shape and about the copper stand. Perhaps I should keep the copper stand for organics? Or not at all? I have a large piece of clear moretti. I'll squash one end and shape the other and anneal it. This bead is big, if I want to add more layers, should I start with a smaller base? Where can more interest go within these four layers. The final layer is pale pink moretti to encase.

10-02-2004, 09:45 PM
The basics of a layered design is good, and you are heading in the right direction. This is a bead that can be great! I like the tab shape.

I love layered beads, you can look into them and see something different each time.

Here are my thoughts:

I would build this bead in about 10 layers.

I'd start with a small base of black, then layer on a transparent.

Take some foil that has been cut in tiny slivers (don't use a complete covering sheet of foil, it hides the depth you want) and wrap at haphazard angles on this layer of trans. Don't completely cover the bead, you want it on there like a lattice work.

Don't burn off the silver, but cover it with another coat of a transparent color.

Next I would make several passes with an opaque stringer, perhaps just dots in a random pattern, or dots in a spiral down the bead; just a bit, don't hide the bead. Then fill in with a transparent covering the opaque, and shape it up a bit.

Now more of the slivered foil - remember to keep the foil pieces thin, then repeat until you have the size bead you want.

A for the dots, I would probably forget them. My second choice would be clear lenses, bigger than the dots you have, maybe even flattened to a disc, or I would use a reduction glass for a metallic dot finish. I think the metallic dots would pull the buried foil glow out of the depths.

It sounds like alot, and it is, but the effect of buidling layers is wonderful, and you've got a great start on the technique.

If you lay everything out and plan it on paper, it is easier then just guessing when your in the flame.

I'll be anxious to see where you take this bead, please post again as an update to the critique! :wave:

10-03-2004, 03:40 PM
Again, I want to thank everyone who responded. I am still open to suggestions. I have not been able to get back to the torch today but maybe tomorrow! :D

10-25-2004, 11:50 PM
Here are a couple new layered beads I have done using the advice in this thread. What do you think?

10-26-2004, 10:40 AM
I like the new blue one best, it seems to have more depth than the darker ones. I always have trouble getting depth on a flat bead, maybe if you make the bead slightly rounder it will give the impression of more layers.