Be Better in Clay
Written by : Lanilau
If you ever wanted to know how to texture that fry or cob that corn, this article series, Be Better in Clay, is just right for you, miniaturist.
This is an article that will benefit the most advanced to the newest beginner.
Be Better in Clay is an article series that has tips & tricks, collectively.
Have you ever wasted a clay trying to figure out how to make this or that?
Been there, done that.
Now there is a place where Tips, Tricks, and Tiny Tutorials are all together, so no more wasted clay!
If you have a question that has not been answered or stumped how to make something, please contact me by commenting down below or reach me at Lanilau.deviantart.com.
The more you ask, the more you help!
In future editions, we will feature some special guests, have Question and Answer columns, and have readers questions.
Hey, ready to learn some tips and techniques you can include into your clay regimn?
Grab your popcorn (the clay kind, that is) and let us now enjoy the FIRST article of Be Better in Clay.---
Q: How do I make juice/coffee/tea?
Liquid clay, resin, or a little concoction I use: a glue(Glue can bake! Polymer Clay is made out of PVC, another name of glue)& polyurethane mixture. You can substiute polyurethane for a glaze of your choice. You can make it a thick, opaque or a translucent, light drink. Give it a shot! You can adjust the coloring with acrylic, oil paint, or pastels.
- Always have a ruler a handy, it will save your clay social life!
- It helps to write ideas down or draw a rough draft of what you envision your next project to be. This will save you both time and lint'd clay or dried up air-dry clay!
- Give your bread a realstic feel by not only adding a toastiness to the bread, but also to the crust.
- Making plates, saucers, bowls, and trays in advance cuts down on time. Google or Bing "dish styles" or "Arfrican styled bowls". Different styles can give your miniature food an extra nice touch. Food and dishes, both made with hardwork, can make real food look fake!
LIFE SAVING CLAY TIP:
This a tip that all miniaturists should know. You know when you make that salad and you have to make that CarrotTomatoeCucumberPepperCheese? It takes like, hours, just to make little toppings! I suggest you write a list of common toppings you use (lemons, carrots, lettuce, rice) because it will cut your time in half. Just store in little containers. No more having to make each grain of rice or each onion sliver EVERY SINGLE TIME, just set aside some time so you can have them for easy use!
- If you use air-dry clay (like me!), you don't need translucent because Cold Porcelain is already translucent. Add white acrylics to make a white opaque.
- If you use a needle to texture, don't keep it plain! Add something cute to the top of the needle. You've made your own needle tool!
(I've been asked alot of questions, so here I will answer)
Commonly Asked Questions
Q: I've been working hard on a project and I realized THERE IS SO MUCH LINT!! How do I keep my clay clean for future projects?
A: First and foremost, keep your workspace CLEAN. Secondly, keep baby wipes or hand sanitizer & a piece of cloth to wipe your hands off to get dirt, residue, or previous clay coloring. Third, if you missed that pesky piece of lint, no worries. You can sand your masterpiece with small grit sandpaper or one of those double sided nail files. They work a charm!
Q: I'm new in clay and don't know which clay to use. Do you have any suggestions on which one would be right for me?
A: Clay type is like shoes. One size does not fit all. Clay type is all about preference. I can't tell you even or, but I CAN describe each two commonly used clay types, respectively. No personal preference will be involved.
Polymer Clay -
Does not harden unless baked
Turns soft after kneading
Easy to cut
Can leave project out over long periods of time
Holds color very well
Have to buy separate colors
Doesn't blend well with acrylics
You have to bake (may not be a problem for you)
Collects SO much lint
Sticks unless used on right surface
Can eat through plastic
Hard to get translucent
Dries translucent (unless color is added)
Holds texture well
Can add anything to it (sand for granite, oil pastels for tye dye, glue for TLC)
Shrinks a little after drying (Nice for miniaturists! The tinier, the better!)
Can be painted while drying
Dries ROCK solid
Can make yourself
Dries over a short period of time
Can't leave out
If not nicely moisturized, cracks
Mold in container if heat exposed
Have to keep piece that are not being used in container
There are a few other types of clays but there are clays that are commonly used and readliy avaliable be it you make it or buy it.
- Are you Clay Fatique? Ugh, believe me, I know! I have three excellent exercise; 1) Go on Youtube. They have nice tutorials. Learn how to incorporate, but not copy, 2) Just shape a little ball of clay and just knead it. Then, just stare at it. Soon you'll envision your next project, 3) Google is your friend. Google the most unusual foods or things. You might just want to make that pigs food or monkey's brain!
Thank you so much for reading
Be Better in Clay No.1
The rest is yet to come!
Remember, that comments mean ah-lot!
Comments, suggestions, tips, and questions could all be included in the next edition.