Monday, August 27, 2012

Meet Olga Ayala, The Creme de la Creme of Artisans

Over the course of the week, and without a doubt throughout the course of our friendship, you will be hearing or reading about Olga Ayala from me. Whether through my blogs, my pictures, conversation, or conversational pieces (wearing her jewelry or neck warmers never fails at being a great ice breaker), I will be chit chatting about Olga and her work in combination of proudly wearing it. I may even be able to publish one of the two posts I have in drafts about her tonight, before the anticipated Queen Irene temporarily strips us of our electricity as predicted. Therefore, I'd like to publish this little post introducing you to this dear and talented woman. Please take a moment and read a little bit about her. Hopefully one day in the near future we will have an interview to share with you all!

Olga pictured above with her artwork

In the words of Olga Ayala: 

I'm a Nuyorican (Puerto Rican New Yorker) that grew up in the heart of Spanish Harlem in New York City, and I'm an alumnus of The High School of Art & Design in New York City.

While sitting on my mother’s lap as a very young girl while my mom made out the weekly grocery list, I saw her make a quick sketch of Mickey Mouse. I saw that my mom could draw better than anyone I knew and I begged her to teach me to draw too!

My father moonlighted as a Timbalero (Latin percussionist), and this gave me the life long passion I have for music, dance and Latin percussion instruments.

Growing up in the "rhythm section" and being immersed in my rich Puerto Rican culture filled with music, vibrant color, laughter and drama are themes that are often reflected in my work

Olga creates an array of functional artistic pieces out of polymer clay. She also crochets beautiful scarves, purses and head pieces, each with a unique polymer clay accessory incorporated; Olga's signature finishing touch. From sculptures, to jewelry, to home decor, Olga creates unforgettable pieces of art that can be incorporated and enjoyed in our every day life in multiple ways. 

You can find Olga Ayala and keep up with her events on Facebook at Olga Ayala Handicrafts (Hecho a Mano) and visit her store at Etsy here to find more functional art in polymer.

Here are photos of Olga Ayala artwork that I own!

Olga Ayala Neck Warmer with a hand made polymer clay button closure finished in metallic paints. Photo taken by Paul Newland.

Crocheted Cowl Neck Warmer/Hood made by Olga Ayala. The bracelet I am wearing is also made by Olga, I used it for a photo shoot I was styling. You can find the above bracelet here. Photo by Eric Mayr

Pictured above is my first Olga Ayala purchase ever, my beautiful heart charm bracelet. I bought this for myself for Valentines Day :) Above the bracelet is a pair of earrings I had my eyes on for quite some time as well as the ring that says "love". I just wore all of them together yesterday and received so many compliments! The colors in the ring really pull together the bracelet and earrings, and the ring and bracelet create a more thematical look.