Chrysalis Tribal Jewelry

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Saturday, January 30, 2016

Adventures in Polymer Clay

Let's face it, everything I do with polymer clay is an experiment! I have an idea in my head of the finished piece, and sometimes the results are close to my vision. Other times, I end up with something entirely different. That is part of the fun in working with a new material. One idea leads to another. One technique leads to another. One success leads to another, hopefully. Experiments lead to discovery and growth with the successes, and also with the failures.

My main objective in working with polymer clay is to create beads and components that look like artifacts, something curious that was recovered in an ancient excavation. Not to say that I don't venture off here and there. My clay surfaces are at times pitted or crusty. I like to use inclusions of broken gemstones, metal and glass. After baking the clay, I use a broad range of coloring agents, alcohol inks, Gilder's paste, shoe polish, old powder eye shadow and blush, acrylic paint, and pastels. The coloring is done in several layers until the piece has a pleasing range of color and depth.

The pieces pictured in the collage above are some of my most recent designs that illustrate my ever widening range in polymer clay in a variety of focal pieces.

In the photos on the right, some of my experiments with color. This one has a layer of acrylic paint and a layer of pastel.

This grouping is colored with more subtle pastels.

In this focal, I included a sort of copper mesh into the pendant design, and colored it with pigments from powdered eye shadows. After baking, I added layers of Swellegant copper metallic coating followed by a patina.

#polymerclaycoloring #polymerclaytechniques #agingpolymerclay #pigmentsinpolymerclay #tribalpolymerclay

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