Art Elements Monthly Theme: Petroglyphs

Welcome to my post for the October Art Elements Blog Theme Reveal: Petroglyphs.

Karen discusses what Petroglyphs are in her theme intro post from Oct. 2, 2018, and I do not really delve into carving stone to create, but rather into earth clay, which is then hardened into ceramic material by the heat and temperatures of my kiln. The particles that make up my ceramic clay are from the earth and to me the carving of earth clay in ways that tell my story of what I see and want to express in my work do fall into line with ancient and new petroglyphs. I hope you enjoy a little insight into my process and have fun hopping around to the other artists participating in this months blog hop.

Marsha Neal Studio Original Carved Clay Texture Plates (circa 2002).

Above are some of my very first carvings into clay to make texture plates. I roll out slabs of clay and let them set up to leather hard. I then use stylus embossing tools, pencils, dental tools or anything else at hand to make my mark in the clay. I always refine the edges of my lines with a damp sponge as I work and as the clay dries out, often going over the designs multiple times.

Marsha Neal Studio Larger Carved Texture Plate: Buggy Vibrations (inspired by my brain wanting to create, but not knowing exactly where to put the energy).

As I started to make beads on a full time basis, I decided that I needed to make some larger texture plates so I could roll out larger slabs and cut out my bead shapes from that. The above “Buggy Vibrations” texture plate was one of my more quirky plates. It touches on how my creative brain was at the time. I had carved a lot of other plates and wanted to go into more directions, but like when I get scared – I just run in place and scream a bit. So this is what came out. A bunch of lines with buggy things and lines like wallpaper that they are scurrying up or down or just in place moving.

Marsha Neal Studio Carved texture rollers and round texture plate. I enjoy using the reverse printing that happens with this type of carved tool.

I also moved to carving some rolling texture coils and then as I wanted to just try out some new textures, smaller round plates as above. I tend to work smaller to test out ideas to see how they will work in reverse, then make larger plates if it is something I really like.

Marsha Neal Studio Carved Texture Roller and some Chocolate Stoneware Clay earring sized pendants with the reverse print in some areas. Gnarly Spiral design cabochon too.

Because of the small size of this textured clay coil, I decided to just roll it across some clay and cut it out utilizing the rolled edge to create a variation in some pendants. Pushing boundaries not making things all perfect – Watch out! lol

Marsha Neal Studio Spiral Carved Press Molds used to make lentil beads. Top shows three of my carved molds. Middle two are my bisque fired chocolate clay beads. Bottom four are the finished rustic glazed lentil beads.

In the last couple of years I have liked the idea of making beads instead of just pendants, and so I rolled out thick slabs of clay and made these press molds. Below is a time lapse video I shared through my Marsha Neal Studio Facebook page a bit ago.

I plan on photographing some of these rustic lentil beads for my Handmade Component Bazaar Show (Facebook Group) on 11/1/18. And one day I will be updating my Marsha Neal Studio Etsy shop too. Usually that happens after my online shows.

Thank You for stopping by and spending your time reading about my process a bit more. I hope this theme inspires your artistic work and you will share some of your work through social media with #AEThemePetroglyphs.

Here are the blog hop participants:

Our Guest Artists:
Jill Egan:
Tammy Adams:
Alison Herrington:
Sarajo Wentling:
Jenny Kyriach:
Kathy Lindemer:

Art Elements Team:
Lesley Watt:
Jenny Davies-Reazor:
Cathy Spivey Mendola:
Sue Kennedy:
Caroline Dewison:
Laney Mead:
Marsha Neal Minutella:
Claire Fabian:

One Sweet Bead Market One Day Artist Show October 2, 2018

I’ve been working at making some new beads for my October 2, 2018 One Sweet Bead Market Facebook Group show, and here is a little peek.

New Beads made for this show with a fall/October feel.

I have a blog post scheduled on Wednesday, October 3 over on ArtElements to show you how I make these Trapeze dangle bead earrings (I will have lots of these beads in my show on OSBM) and you are more than welcome to give it a go and make yourself & your customers some of these fun earrings.

Dangly beads and my swinging trapeze earring style (I have a blog post on Art Elements to go live on Wednesday Oct 3 to show you how to make these).

Here is how I keep my show stock organized. I label the rows by letter A, B, C, etc and the columns by numbers 1, 2, 3, and so on. When you go to the show at any point on Oct 2 (10am) to Oct 3 (8am I clear the wall), you can click on the Photos tab in the group and see what may still be available. I sometimes can accommodate MTO (Made To Order) items, but some of these are just for this show and limited edition and once sold, that will be it until next year. I am ready to make new things, so get them when you can!

Show stock for the OSBM one day show. I love earring pairs! Will have some pendants and donuts as well.

I hope to see you over there! And remember you can always shop my Marsha Neal Studio Etsy shop!

My next Facebook group online shows are:

November 1, 2018 Handmade Component Bazaar

December 4, 2018 One Sweet Bead Market

January 3, 2019 Handmade Component Bazaar

Art Elements Blog Theme of the Month: Fairies

Welcome to my post for this month’s Art Elements Blog Monthly Theme: Fairies. Thank you Caroline for picking such a wonderful topic!

I have always been a believer in Fairies and the magic that other realms hold. I have memories of speaking to the little people that lived in the speakers playing the music I heard and playing for hours outside imagining that there were little creatures in nature. In my mind I was able to shrink down to their size and fully immerse myself into their world.

I wanted to make some toadstools out of wool, and I finally sat down to give it a go. I love using these ceramic vessels I made a while back as their holder.

Below are some photos from Longwood Gardens in August showing some of the places I think Fairies must visit…

And more toadstools – this time with my stoneware ceramic clay. I think I may be more interested in the habitat surrounding the little people.

When I first started making clay beads I had carves some designs from scenes from my imagination.

I thought they would make interesting focal beads and earring pairs.

Again – always something about their environment – I would love to just help explore and create in there.

And some fun earrings with these carvings of a mysterious wood in mid-winter.

Thanks for stopping by to see some of my new work.

Please take some time to visit the other participants for this month’s blog hop:

Guest Artists
Art Elements Team
Marsha (you are here)

Art Elements Monthly Theme: Swirl


Welcome to my blog post for the Reveal of the Art Elements Theme Challenge: Swirl

I know that I am going to be beyond excited to see all of the talented artists work as this theme is something that is pretty wide  open to interpretation for inspiration. My life every day seems like a swirl – always moving.

Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA Illuminated Fountain Show. The week after Bead Fest Philly, Jenny Davies-Reazor, Lesley Watt and I went up to see the night time show. Flowers there earlier in the week also provided lots of inspiration!

The force of the water through the moving fountain heads and at night set to music and lights are a Swirling delight to behold.

A lot of my hand carved texture plates are very swirl inspired. I wanted to use my Now That’s A Jig to play around with the idea of wire making swirls and then using them for earrings (some will be great for holiday ornamentation). I wore these all day and my ears did not feel worn out with weight. They were quite movable while wearing them, and did not get stuck on anything – so they passed my wearability test.

Swirly Beads fresh out of the kiln – future project ideas brewing!

My life continues to SWIRL – nothing like hosting a blog hop theme reveal and having a one day Facebook show going on. I’m going to be computing all day! Marsha Neal Studio in the Handmade Component Bazaar Facebook Group from 10am Thursday 8/30/18 to 10am Friday 8/31/18 EST. If you bid on anything in my show on Thursday/Friday or make a purchase from my Etsy shop, mention Art Elements Swirl and I’ll take 10% off your invoice. US orders over $25 will get free USPS First Class Mail shipping through 8/31/18.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by and see my Swirl Inspirations. Here is a list of the other bloggers participating in the Art Elements Monthly Theme Challenge:

Guest Artists:













Art Elements Team: 





Jenny & Lesley 


Marsha (you are here)


One lucky Guest Artist Blogger is going to be picked to receive this group of items fresh out of my kiln:

I will announce the winner by updating the Art Elements Swirl Reveal post. If you want a chance at winning the monthly artists giveaway, get your blog up and running and keep an eye out for the monthly themes on the Art Elements Blog (announced early in the month, reveal at the end of the month).

2018 Facebook Group Shows

You can find lots of items in my Marsha Neal Studio Etsy shop all the time.

Online Facebook Group show links:

Handmade Component Bazaar

One Sweet Bead Market

Ceramic Art Bead Market