This is the 600-gram “rock” from my last blog posting, waiting to be carved.
This piece actually did fit in my 6.5″ x 6.5″ x 4.5″ small kiln. I just mixed 1550 grams of copper, which will probably fit in an 8″ x 8″ x 6″.
The scale shows the weight of the powder plus the water. I am not yet ready to make another piece, since there are so many things I learned from this experience and need to experiment some more.
I was asked why I had made such a piece. The answer is that metal clay creations don’t necessarily have to be functional. Sometimes you want to do it for art’s sake. But mainly I was trying to explore the limits of this medium. I wanted to see what it could do and what it couldn’t. Obviously it’s a new sculptural medium – different from the familiar ones, like ceramic sculpting and stone carving – that needs more research and experimentation.
Since the launch of the one-fire clays, Quick-fire Brilliant Bronze has continued to be highly popular despite its long firing schedule. Quick-fire Brilliant Bronze requires 2-phase firing with a cooling phase between firings.
In August, a one-fire version of Brilliant Bronze will be available, known as Friendly Brilliant Bronze. Friendly Brilliant Bronze has exactly the same gold color as Quick-fire Brilliant Bronze and fires 2 hours at 1500°F/815°C in a brick kiln, 1550°F/843°C in a muffle kiln.
For your convenience, here is a handy table listing which Hadar’s Clay products fire in one phase and which fire in two phases.
My sixth book, Architectural Jewelry in Metal Clay, is progressing faster than I thought. It is now in its editing and proofreading phases. Therefore, the deadline for submitting photos is close: August 15, 2014.
If you have taken this workshop with me before, please send me your photos as soon as possible, titled, at 300 dpi resolution, 5″ x 5″.
Two more workshops are scheduled before the deadline:
- July 11-15 at my studio in Berkeley. Please contact me for availability. The class is almost full.
- August 1-3 in Victoria, Canada. Please contact www.metalclayalchemist.com for availability.
In addition to local weekly classes and 5-day intensives at my studio in Berkeley, California, I run a few distance learning programs. All these programs are based on a monthly fee.
1. Ongoing individual program: This program takes place online via email and Skype and is adjusted to your own level. It is meant primarily for people who have no access to classes in their area, and as a pre-accreditation program for people who wish to be accredited teachers for Hadar’s Clay but do not yet meet the requirements for the program. Your progress depends on the amount of time you can devote to learning in a given month. I will be available to you throughout the month for questions, consultations, and new projects. At the end of a paid month you can stop the program or take a break and sign up for another month later.
2. Accreditation program: If you wish to become a Hadar’s Clay accredited teacher, this program takes about a year in the form of assignments and feedback. A new program starts twice a year in a group setting (we are currently set up as a private Facebook Group), or at any given time on an individual basis (via email). This latter option allows you to take the program in your own time and proceed at your own pace. Please contact me by email to check for availability. To qualify for this program you need to be experienced in Hadar’s Clay and familiar with my books and instruction manuals. If you do not meet the requirements, you can still sign up for the individual program to prepare you for the accreditation class.
3. Ongoing online advanced program: This program is meant for advanced users and teachers. It takes place online (currently set up as a private Facebook group) in the form of assignments and discussions.The program officially started in June, 2014. If you meet the requirements, you can join the program at any later point in time. However, you will not have access to previously posted assignments and discussions. If you do want access to this information, you have the option of signing up to the individual program as a preparation for the advanced class. This allows you to progress faster than the group and to eventually join it if you wish to.
This blog entry is also posted as a permanent file on the right-hand pane of my blog.
I have established an ongoing class which will take place online on a Facebook group. It is not an accreditation class; it is an extension of my hands-on classes at my studio, with the purpose of giving people who live far away access to new developments and projects that have not been published. It will take the form of assignments, projects, and discussions, and possible Skype demonstrations. To learn how this program works please read
this document [updated May 13, 2014] the latest version of the program charter, available here.
Just to clarify, this is not a support forum; the program is about learning new things, and revisiting techniques and digging deeper into old projects. For support please join the Hadar’s Clay Support Forum.
Please don’t ask to join the Hadar’s Ongoing Online Class group on Facebook before contacting me first by email.
If you are a beginner, and have no access to classes at your area please contact me to ask about individual online tutoring.
My next book is underway – Architectural Jewelry in Metal Clay, hopefully to be published by the end of the year. Although some of the projects may be for “conversation pieces,” the range of techniques employed to create them goes far and wide. They include what I call “perspective made easy” – creating the illusion of depth without measuring lengths and angles, translating 3D scenes to 2D images, low relief, reverse construction (“underlay”), complex hollow forms, constructing armatures, and more. The topics are indoor and outdoor scenes; landmark buildings such as castles, missions, craftsman houses and lighthouses; skylines; cityscapes; bridges; and natural elements such as cracks, slates, and crates.
If you have taken this workshop with me before, you are welcome to send me photos of your work, high quality, 300 dpi, 5″ x 5″. Please include a title and credit as you wish to see them published. Please send the photos to my email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you haven’t taken this class before, you are welcome to join a 5-day workshop at my studio in Berkeley, CA, on July 11-15. If you want to take this workshop but are not sure you are ready for it, please contact me via email.
Here are some photos representing the type of projects featured in the book and workshop.
For those who wonder about the color of Dark Champagne Bronze, here is a tutorial.
A note for my customers and students in Canada (and the United States), please check out this workshop. The location is Glen Williams, one hour away from Toronto and two hours from Niagara Falls. The workshop is an introduction to pictorial and architectural jewelry. We will make an indoor scene and learn a technique called “reverse construction” or “underlay.” Not as hard as it sounds. It’s actually a lot of fun.
Now on to the project:
Dark Champagne Bronze is a one-fire clay with the color of Quick-fire Bronze.
You will need: a leather band and a circular mold to make the medallion. The project focuses on the back part of the medallions. The medallions I used are two of my mokume-gane molds.
1. Press a generous chunk of Dark Champagne Bronze into the mold. Without taking the clay out turn the mold over and press it onto the work surface to flatten the clay. Pull the mold out, cut away the excess clay and dry. (The picture below shows two medallions, made for two separate bracelets.)
2. Place the medallion upside down on the leather band. With a pencil, mark 2 vertical lines a little above and below the leather band.
3. Roll out a layer of Dark Champagne Bronze 14 cards thick. Out of the layer cut two strips, 5 mm wide. The length should be about half the diameter of the medallion. Wet the back of the medallion and attach the strips: the top strip above the top pencil line, the bottom strip below the bottom pencil line. Dry.
4. Roll a layer of Dark Champagne Bronze 6 cards thick. Lay it next to the back of the medallion.
5. Align your tissue blade with the top of the top strip. Cut into the layer.
6. Align the tissue blade with the bottom of the bottom layer. Cut into the layer again.
7. Place the cut layer under the medallion. Align the tissue blade with the right end of the strips and cut.
8. Align the tissue blade with the left side of the strips and cut again.
9. Wet the strips, pick up the cut rectangle and fit it on top of them. Dry.
10. Fill in all gaps between the strips and the rectangle. Dry.
11. Make sure that the leather band fits comfortably into the slot.
12. Stick pieces of fiber paper into the slot to prevent it from slumping.
13. Fire at 1720°F/938°C (brick kiln); 1770°F/965°C (muffle kiln) for 2 hours.
The bracelet in the photo below is done in a similar way. See instructions in Patterns of Color of Metal Clay, pp. 71-73.