Glowing Color Blends for Polymer Clay

Here are some color blend experiments with alizarin crimson,  premo brand, polymer clay.alizarin blend 1 alizarin blend 2 alizarin blend 3 alizarin blend 4

Here I’ve introduced blush.

alizarin blend 5 alizarin blend 6

and here I have added sunshine.

alizarin blend 7alizarin blend 8

This one one of several blends I made for these canes.polymer clay stained glass canes 5

My first trial was the honey blend.  I’ll post new blends as I discover them.

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Illuminated Stained Glass Canes Gallery

I’m on a wonderful road trip!  I’m currently sitting in Deep Creek Coffee outside of Zion National Park in Utah (lovely shop, and also my chance to get internet).  Today I hope to take my chalk pastels out and do some plein air painting (I’m a landscape painter as well as a polymer clay artist).  My favorite this is to attempt to capture light in painting, and now in clay.  The night before my trip I stayed up late to make some canes from the July issue of Cane Builder.  I was able to finish and photograph these just in time.  They are relatively fast once the preliminary work is done.  I have some more blends back home waiting for me if they don’t dry out in the Tucson summer. Achieving glowing color blends is very important for these canes.  All of these use my honey blend. If you subscribe for this cane, please allow me 24 hours to find internet again!  Thanks!

stained glass cane 1 stained glass cane 2   polymer clay stained glass canes 2 polymer clay stained glass canes 4 polymer clay stained glass canes 5

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Polymer clay honey color blend

I’ve been experimenting with new ways to make glowing color blends.  This blend was inspired by light glowing through the honey jar.  This is premo clay.

Colors right out of the package: Burnt Umber, Raw Sienna, Orange, Cadmium Yellow, White

honey blend1 honey blend2 honey blend3 honey blend4 honey blend5

I decided to turn this blend into a gemstone cane.honey gemstone

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Overlapping Planes Canes

Wow, I love it when ideas spread through the clay world even when we don’t know it!  This morning, when I checked into Polymer Clay Daily I was amazed to see that an artist had beautifully executed an idea that I’ve been working with for a long time.  Here is a link to the post, Polymer Circle Illusions.  Do you see how the shapes overlap almost as if they were panes of stained glass?  I don’t know how Ana does it, but  you can certainly follow the links in the PCD post.

Overlapping planes cane

For the May issue of Cane Builder, I’ve been working with the idea of overlapping colors.  I  can’t wait to see your variations.  If fact, sometimes simple is best.  I might experiment with more basic variations of this technique…  Haha, I always say that when I send out an issue… there are so many paths to follow that there is infinite room for other cane makers to create their own innovations.

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Polymer Clay Rose and Morning Glory Cane with no Backgound

Backgroundless canes allow for many possibilities.  Believe it or not, they can be imbedded right into the clay and even sanded.  If you look very carefully you may see where I sanded a little too much, but for the most part I’m amazed by the way they look as though they are painted right onto the clay.  That’s why I call this month’s canes “brush stroke” canes.

Check this out!  My favorite part is the way I can fold the slices of leaves to give them dimension.  You can see the process of reducing and applying the canes in this youtube video “How to reduce a cane with no background“.  The video shows beads.  These eggs where covered with a thin sheet of light blue clay, and then I worked the slices into the clay “canvas”.

polymer clay backgroundless morning glory cane polymer clay morning glory eggbackgroundless rose egg polymer clay flower cane eggs backgroundless cane egg

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One Way to Cover an Egg with Polymer Clay

blue polymer clay egg

Every year I try to find new ways to cover eggs with clay.  These are the exact canes made in the blue tile tutorial.  However, you could use any square kaleidoscope cane.

Step 1:

Poke a very small hole in the top and bottom of an egg.  Blow the insides out.  If you break the egg up with the pin, it will come out more easily.

Step 2:

Wash or bleach the egg very well.  Make sure it is completely dry before you cover in with clay.  If you need to warm it in the oven to dry it, that works well.

Step 3:

Cover the egg.  Make sure you have plenty of firm cane.  You may need to let your canes sit out for a day or two.

Step 4:

Smooth the egg as well as possible.  Flattening the seems between the canes is very important.  Unfortunately, smoothing the egg also distorts the pattern.  I do most of the smoothing with sandpaper after the egg is baked.  I start with 60 grit, which is very large.

Step 5:

Before you bake the egg poke a tiny pinhole in the top to let the air out.  Otherwise the egg will have an “outie” belly button when it is baked!

egg tute 1

I cut a triangle out of one of the squares to make a hexagonal kaleidoscope for the bottom and top of the egg.egg tute2

I start with one end and work my way to the other end.  Finding the exact center at the top is quite difficult.  Do any of you have any tips?

egg tute 3

I don’t measure my cane slices to fit the egg.  I just choose how many I want (in this case the patten will repeat 6 times) and squish them into a ribbon.  Once you have a smooth ribbon of clay, just stretch it or condense it to fit around the egg exactly. egg tute 5egg tute 4

egg tute 7

Here you see that the ribbon was a little too long and I had to condense in a little to fit.

polymer clay egg tutorial

By the end, all you have left is one last hexagonal kaleidoscope. I wait to make it until I can tell what size it needs to be.

blue polymer clay egg 2

Here is another example

blue scroll work egg 2 blue scroll work egg blue scrollwork egg 3
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Miniature Blue China Tea Set in Polymer Clay

When I looked at the blue scrollwork pattern in the March 2014  issue of Cane Builder, it immediately reminded me of a china tea set!  This etsy tutorial shows you how to make tea sets from any round kaleidoscope cane, or you could make one in your own way. After all, a slice from a round cane is automatically a plate!  I sometimes bring a pre-made round cane for the kids when we make miniature food and cake!miniature blue tea set polymer clay blue china miniature tea set polymer clay blue china

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