Everyone else.... be sure to notice that the gold clay in the last photo isCOMPLETELY FLAT
... the apparent depth of the pattern is an optical illusion.
IOW there are not two
colors of clay creating the pattern, and there are no
depressed areas at all. You almost have to run your fingers over these perfectly smooth "ghost image" mica patterns to be aware of how amazing the effect is.
At my site I sort the effects that can be achieved with mica-containing
clays (gold, silver, pearl, or colored ones) into several categories:
...Teapot's first tutorial would be under the basics, or maybe Other Techniques
...Teapot's technique shown in this thread is called ghost image
mica, which she's done here with a shaving technique (or one can sand
the clay flat after baking to do the same thing). The ghost image effects work best with stamps or textures that are deep, or tool marks that are deep.
...twisted ropes, stacks/"ingots," other 3-D and flat effects by Mike Buesseler
...caning techniques and cane slice onlays by Pier Voulkos & othersWhat's actually happening
, for those interested, is that some polymer clays (metallics
in the lines of Premo, Kato, and perhaps still FimoSoft --but not metallics of FimoClassic and not Sculpey III), contain many small flat flakes of mica (which come from wide clear
mica sheets/flakes on the surface of a certain type of rock).
When the clay is flattened
very well (in various ways), all the flakes line up parallel
to the surface of the clay sheet, and reflect light nicely so that the gold (or any color of clay they're in) looks very shiny.
Then, any flakes which are pressed on will be disturbed
and no longer parallel to the surface ...therefore they can't reflect the light as well and will appear darker and more dull than shiny.
....So what you're seeing in a "mica shift" item is a pattern created by the differences between the areas of dull gold and shiny gold (since she used gold colored clay).
P.S. The clay color called Pearl
is a fairly colorless
(slightly whitish) mica-containing clay, which can also be given color by mixing in regular colored clays. or other things.
Here are four pages that show Pearl mixed with various colors
, which have also been give a mica shift technique (different than the technique above... this technique is created with mica cane slices
placed on a clay sheet and rolled flat):http://www.clayfactoryinc.com/images/gallery/pier/PIER1.htm
The gold, copper, etc
. mica clays can also be colored but of course they'll be darker...here are a few:http://www.norajean.biz/ColorCards/Samples/Card-Grp.htm
(beginning with photo # 4
(entire palettes of color can be created with mica clays which can then create these hologaphic effects)
There's lots more info on all the mica techniques
on this page, for anyone who wants to see more examples, tips, etc.http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/mica.htm
GlassAttic....polymer clay "encyclopedia" http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
little bit'o photosharing: http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/dianeatglassattic/my_photos