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1  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General / Re: Liquid Starch Paper Marbling on: June 28, 2008 03:44:03 PM
what type of paint do you use with this?  acrylic? oil base (like enamel model paint)

also, can you use home made paper that you have made yourself for this kind of paper marbling?

thanks for the wonderful tutorial
2  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Discussion and Questions / Re: How To: LOCAL clay? on: June 26, 2008 11:33:52 PM
The first thing you can do is get a piece of clay moistened and knead it for about 5 minutes. Then roll the clay into a snakey piece about an inch round and then curl it around your finger.  If it creates cracks by doing that, you've got too much sand in it for it to be of much use for anything. You should probably take a ceramics class and talk to your professor about the clay.  I just got some clay from the side of a creek in Texas. It was rock hard so first I had to soak it in water for a couple of days.  Then it was too wet, but I decided to squoosh it through a screen to get out any rocks and impurities. It's in a plastic bag in my car now and I will take it to class next week and throw a pot with it.

The first thing you should do is get the rocks and other debris out of your clay.  There are a couple of ways to do this.  My professor says to spread it out thin, let it dry completely, powder it by smashing it up to powder fine consistency, and sift it through a screen.

Me, I just got my clay wet and squooshed it through a screen with a rock.  Much more cavemanlike and primitive.  It was fun.

Next, you need to make a couple of small test pieces and let them dry slowly -- cover them with plastic so that they do not crack from drying unevenly.  It may take two weeks for them to dry completely.  THen they need to be bisque fired in a kiln.  Do not attempt to do this yourself if you've never fired stuff, and only have someone do it who knows about firing pottery -- it is different than firing slipcast molds.  The ramp for firing pottery is waaaaaaaaaaaaay different that slipcast molds because the consistency of the clay is very different and thus the firing ramp (schedule of degree of temperature rise per hour, "soaking" times to allow moisture to depart from the clay so the piece does not explode in the kiln, etc) is waaaaaaaaaaaay different.

Once it is bisque fired, then you need to test it's range so one piecer should be fired to cone 5 and another fired to cone 10.  Then you will know your clay's properties and limitations.

Do NOT add stuff to "temper" it -- you need to test fire it first, because it may be just fine the way it is.  If you add sand or grass to it, you will likely just ruin it.

YOu should probably try to meet a potter who does wood firing or pit firing -- both are ancient methods of firing.  They will be able to help you a lot on your quest to learn to work with raw clay.

It's very fun.  Just there is a LOT of technical detail, and you absolutely CANNOT do anything in your oven.  It won't get the clay hot enough to become vitrious (where it won't turn back into clay when you get it wet).
3  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Discussion and Questions / Re: any potters out there!? on: June 26, 2008 11:16:45 PM
I'm a potter.  I have my own wheel at home, but I'm fairly new to working in clay -- I've been doing it since Aug 2007
4  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Re: sail the 7 seas with me on: June 26, 2008 11:03:33 PM
this whale is just great! I would miss him also.  man, you could make a huge one to lie on while you watch TV! That would be awesome!
5  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Re: Pied crow - 1st plush attempt. on: June 26, 2008 11:01:08 PM
really great work.  I love this.  I don't understand how you made it exactly.  Is it sculpted felt or something? Is it sewn? Is it both?  It's amazingly well done.
6  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Re: It's a Dog, A Plane, No its Hippo Hero! on: June 26, 2008 10:58:30 PM
this is hilarious!!

I love it!
7  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Re: Sufjan Stevens doll (Come on! Feel the Illinoise!) on: June 26, 2008 10:55:00 PM
 Cheesy
this is absolutely awesome

I just joined crafters and have found this to be an awesome site.
I was checking out forums and wanted to see plush toys and doll clothes and stuff and I TOTALLY flipped when I read Sufjan Stevens doll.  I'm a big fan of his.  I was like wtf a Sufjan Stevens doll??? No way!!

This is absolutely brilliant. It's so funny.  You did a great job.  You ought to send him pics of it.  He'll probably write a song about it!

you did a fantastic job.  wonderful.
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