Convergent Series

learning, using & teaching metal clay, and other aspects of life

Archive for May 16th, 2011

Two Hearts, revisited

Posted by C Scheftic on 2011/05/16

Back in March, when I was writing about some of my trials with Art Clay copper, I used several photos of the piece shown to the left (as well as others) to illustrate what I was talking about.

Regular readers of this blog will know that I encountered some major problems working with that clay. Not to say I’ll never try it again, but I’ve been really busy lately, and I had other products to use and things to make when I managed to find some spare time.

Still, I liked that two-heart design (’twas just from a very inexpensive rubber stamp I bought soon after a very special couple announced their engagement) so, the other night, when I had a bit of Hadar Jacobson’s bronze clay left over, I used the stamp again, with one of her techniques: I made the base out of bronze, with copper inlaid to follow the stamp’s design.

Admittedly, this approach resulted in a few small glitches too. I lost a little bit of the inner edge of the top heart while never quite getting all the spirals to reappear, but I kind of like the little random “blobs” so that’s ok for a “practice” piece.

The thing that surprised me most was the way this domed a bit when it was fired! Being bronze, after its been fired there’d be no way (certainly not with the relatively simple set of tools I’m working with…) to either achieve that (as an afterthought) or undo it (if it bothered me). But I found it a pleasant surprise so I’m just going to appreciate it without, at least for the moment, being concerned about understanding why that happened.

Though, of course, I know I will eventually have to make a number of other pieces, varying slightly on the overall approach used here, to try to figure out the pattern of when that does and does not happen. How long can I savor the moment before being driven back to figure that out?

Metal clays may be relatively easy to work with, but part of what I love about this is puzzling out all the different quirks….

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