More Mokume-gane and a Redesigned Website

Here is another mokume-gane design that I’ve been trying to achieve for a long time. If you look at the following photos, you’ll see the difference between these and the ones I showed in previous postings.

I’ve learned that this kind of look is not very successful with less than three metals. I’ve also learned that borrowing existing techniques from polymer clay does not work in most cases, since there is a major difference between polymer clay and metal clay: while polymer clay is baked at a low temperature, metal clay is fired at high temperatures, and that causes reactions between the metals involved in the design. That means that with metal clay, the design that you see before you fire a piece is not necessarily what you you will see after firing, and this needs to be taken into account when you design your piece.

There are a lot of other reasons why metal clay does not work like polymer clay, such as consistency, drying issues, available colors, etc. For all of these reasons, polymer clay techniques need to be adjusted to work with metal clay, or new techniques found that can yield similar results.

For example, this natural wood grain design is something I had to figure out for myself:

Although I am not going to stop experimenting, I think I have enough material now to start writing my fourth book. I don’t have a name for it yet, but it’s mainly about color effects in metal clay. If you have taken classes with me on this topic or intend to take classes within the next few months, you are most welcome to send me photos to be included in a book.

You can now see a “summary” of my experiments on my newly designed website (the new design was long past due; the old one was a terrible mess), especially in the sections “Mixed Metal Jewelry” and “Steel and White Bronze“.


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