Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Fun with Creative Paperclay!

Introducing ....
The flamboyant, frilly and lover of everything pink,
The Moon of Hearts and her Flamingo,"Fontaine"!

How in the world do you start on a project like this?
First, I make certain I have plenty of Creative Paperclay on hand!
Next I create a foundation for my pieces with either entirely Paperclay,
or Aluminum Foil for larger projects.

You can begin shaping a rough form with your hands, then
begin pinching it tighter and with greater detail using needle nose pliers.
This is a wonderful way to play with your shapes and different compositions.
Notice I've used Aluminum Armature wire to join together the Moon head to her body.
I also use the Armature wire for things like spindly legs and long delicate bits. 
This wire is strong, but relatively easy to bend and work with.
Next, it's time to break out your Paperclay!

Generally I begin by rolling the clay into a ball shape, approximately the size of the object I'm making.
Then you want to flatten it, using either the heels of your hands, or a rolling pin. I also work with a ziplock bag and keep my unused clay in there, removing only what I need. 
It's helpful to have a jar of water at the readiness, to dip your fingers in when the clay begins to feel a bit dry. 
Use just a touch of water though, as you don't want to over wet the clay. 
Now begin to press and mold the Paperclay around your foil shape, smoothing and adding details as you go.
Don't forget to use photo references as a visual aid, when possible.

This is "Squishie", a baby Flamingo, and he was my reference
for this cute fellow below. 

Rather than present an entire sculptural tutorial today, I thought I'd share some techniques that you can
use on any Paperclay project to help your pieces look more finished and professional.
Often when sculpting, it can sometimes be challenging, especially for beginners, to achieve
a smooth finish with just your fingers or sculpting tools. An advantage
of Paperclay is that you can sand, carve and drill it after it's dried which is fantastic.
It's also VERY light weight, which is wonderful!
Ideally, I prefer to make my pieces as smooth as possible before it dries, because
not only do I love the look, but it's a real time saver when prepping for painting.
A favorite technique for smoothing, is to have a round paintbrush on hand, of the appropriate size,
and dip it into the jar of water and very very gently brush it across the clay, again being careful not to
get it too wet or you'll wash away your finely worked details.
This water and paintbrush technique, allows you to stretch the working time with 
your Paperclay, and helps to remove unwanted tool marks and blemishes giving your
work a much more finished look.

Combine that with a few feathers,
a dash of glitter on a heart shaped collar,

a few washes of paint, and fabric,
and you have a wonderful art piece!

For more information about Paperclay, 
check out their website
and the Creative Paperclay blog

Moon of Hearts is available in my Etsy shop.
Enjoy your weekend everyone! :-)

1 comment:

Leah said...

So interesting...I've never heard of this before!