Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Starts and Fits

Color Wheels Turning
Color images transferring. After a lot of false starts and re-starts, have seemingly found a consistent way to get a clear transfer of images. Trying to be regulated in the type of clay (Kato translucent) and temperatures, baking times, thicknesses. Repetition to ensure repeatable results.

This piece is 2 inches by 2 1/2 inches long. Pretty large for a brooch. It's easier to try new things on an oversized piece than to be messing with something tiny while you learn a new method.

This piece 'Fruit Wine Cherries' has been partially sanded and polished. It takes many stages of sanding and polishing to get a mirror finish.

This piece 'Vermont Boiled Cider' has not yet been sanded. It's still in a very rough finish stage. It's 2 1/4 inches by 1 1/2 inches. Getting slightly smaller in size.

The image comes through much clearer after sanding with 400, 600, 1500 and 2000 grit wet-dry sandpapers.

Then buffing on a stitched buffing wheel and final polishing on an unstitched buffing wheel. It takes a lot of sanding and polishing to get the shine that has no scratch marks or high/low spots in the finish.It's the first transfer that was satisfactory.

After trying about four other methods that didn't work as well.

Learned a lot about baking times and temperatures. A dedicated toaster oven and oven thermometer is very important.

Have an exhaust fan in the window, helping to draw out the smell of the baking clay. Even though it's very cold outside, it's good to keep the fresh air coming in and the clay fumes going out.

The pieces are apparently not water tight. Using cold water to shock the translucent clay to its clearest has to be done carefully to keep it out of the layers of the piece.

These are possibilities for the four pieces for the summer article. Tried to find images that have a summer theme. Baseball, apples, butterflies and fruit drinks.

If all the rejections were lined up and photographed it would seem to be a much bigger thing to have these pieces coming out as successes. Maybe photos of the no-go pieces will come later.

Still more to learn. Any thoughts?

Next steps, making the settings for these inserts.

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