Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Book Review - Polymer Clay Color Inspirations, Techniques and Jewelry Projects for Creating Sucessful Palettes, by Lindly Haunani and Maggie Maggio, Part 3

This time I alternated between 3 projects. The first was finishing the leaf pin. I "grouted" the pin and that process went well. Then I made the side, the bezel of sorts. It was trickier getting it smooth so I used the piece on my pin tool that has a criss-cross. It's the piece that screes up and down to hold the pin or let you change it. I like the effect and it hides imperfections quite well. In between all that I made the Textured Collage (page 120). The book shows a huge bead to apply the textured sheets on but I think the shape is ugly, kinda scary really. Looks like half a bug or snake-like animal. So I made a vessel using foil. It was my first try at this and the hardest part was getting the foil in the exact shape and proportion, the rest was easy. What a save on clay! So for the textures I made six. The first is the indented dots. Using a range of colors in the reds and greens I cut a skinner log, applied it in very small slices on the whole piece of clay (3" x 1 1/4") then using the big ball stylus indented the centers. Up the middle I had larger slices. I pressed a stamp in their centers. For texturing effect, the ball stylus came out better. It pushed the center of the skinner, made it look 3d while the stamp was just a stamp.
Making the vessel is a long process because you bake in between steps but the results are pretty good. The second is lattice. This one is straigthforward, I just layered red on white and slices that up. I almost tried to make a cane out of it because she calls it that but really it is just one color on top of another. Applying the stripes in different directions I got a nice pattern. I went over it slightly with the rod. Applying it to the vessel needed some touch ups but came out fine. After baking, the third is reversed skinner blend stripe. I didn't get that one, I used a skinner and sliced it like she said but the stripes were the same no matter how I placed them. I did manage a pattern of stripes, then textured it with a tool. The last side was cool. She calls it free form layered lace, it looks more like coral. It's fun anyway and it really looks like coral. I sheeted at the thinnest, then go over it with the criss-cross tool then poke little holes in between the criss-cross. It's amazing. the clay that has different color underneath makes an interesting pattern. I can see the possibilities for this. The top  was a sheet of white with little balls of clay in different sizes and colors really close together. Again I used the small stylus and poked a pattern of holes in some of the balls. The underneath started out as a good idea. I wanted to make it like the sample pattern beads. Didn't quite work. I put green leaf stripes in the form of a flower with an orange middle. My middle was too much clay. When I sheeted it because the bottom needed to be flat. the orange spread too much and I lost most of the definition. Still a good exercise.
So in between baking I started the collage box (page 127) which turned into a collage table. It's covering a wooden object. I had a table not a box. For the sides of the table I tried the tiger roll cane, didn't work. I did what she said but when I twisted the log it kept breaking on top, I'd fix it and keep twisting. Eventually, I had a striped slab, I wanted one long continuous piece to go around my table so I put it through the pasta machine and ended up with a long striped sheet. I glued it to the wood, tried to smooth it out but some wood was bare and I couldn't have stretched the clay without distorting it, so I'll have to add something to hide the seam later. The second pattern is Voulkos Linoleum. That worked but was difficult to get it right. I reduced and re sized four times before I saw anything resembling a linoleum floor. So then I had a square log of this pattern and she says to apply and make a pattern. Now, I could see myself trying to smooth these slabs for hours so I decided to use the "grout". What I had just learned. So I sliced and glued and made a pattern. Some slices are thicker than others so I use the rod which spreads as it evens them out. Using the exacto I remade my grout corridors. The color I used for the grout brought out the colors in the slabs. Quite nice.

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