Friday, February 27, 2015

Week 8 PCChallenge

    Oh yeah... I received my Makin's extruder in the mail. It only took me nearly a week to actually sit down and play with it.  But when I did- I actually used the results to cover my Exacto knife and a cute little pendant. Here's the results. Nothing to sneeze at but I will be using the extruder- that's for sure.

     So let me start by saying the whole thing about extruders is very fascinating. I mean the technique that really sold me is the "retro dot" look. I won't say my pieces look anything like some of the amazing stuff I've seen using that look- fabulous canes. If you Google "retro cane", you will see better examples and a glimpse of the logistics behind it.  Mind blowing really... or maybe that's just me?  Anyhow- in hindsight, the colors I had on my desk lacked the contrast it needed and so just being the family of blues, it's not the best use of the technique, but it was fun and really, who gets it right on the first try?  Here's a photo to show you a snippet of the process- I didn't take any pics after I extruded, because I cut into them and then my head exploded with giddiness. I can't explain it.

     To simplify- you roll your sheets of clay, cut them out with a cutter, stack them in various patterns or somewhat randomly... then pop it in your extruder and GO!   This was just the basic round extruder die. There are OTHERS, many others, shapes that go together like a puzzle to help you cane... There are also other extruders on the market, ones that run up into the hundreds! (But the quality is exceptional). Don't get me started on techniques, techniques galore. I chose the extruder I have based on the Polymer Clay Tutor's (check YouTube) review of the Makin's Professional Extruder and the Walnut Hollow brand. I chose the Makin's brand. Sure beat the heck out of my old school Kemper Tool plunger Extruder from 20 yrs ago that I don't think I ever used because I didn't quite understand what the hell I was doing. (technically I still don't) but I do understand maintenance and cleaning, which goes a loooooong way to keeping your Muse happy because your tools stay working.  
     One last note on the little pendant. I used the Blank Slate porcelain pendant base (from Hobby Lobby) covered that with clay (used a little TLS). I then attempted to use my medium ball tool to make the slices "cupped". In reality my clay was too mushy and it wanted to stick to everything.  I should have let it firm up a bit.  Anyhow- I applied the mangled, slightly cupped slices and then textured it a bit. After I baked it I added a few drops UV resin to a few of the spots, as well as a few silver seed beads for interest. 

     Anyhow- that was my week. I actually have several other projects on the bench for some swaps at my favorite Yahoo Group Art Charms. But they will not be posted until they are mailed off.  I'm just excited my Xacto knife cannot be kyped by hubby anymore, it will be tooooo obvious which one is mine.  *smile*  *wink*

Happy Weekend!!! We are getting sunshine and 50° on Saturday (ducking and running)  Bah ha ha ha!

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