In this enlightened digital era of ours, if there is one thing that is available in abundance is inspiration.What ever be your area of interest, food, fashion,jewelry, decor,design,literature,art, craft, science or just plain life - it is just the matter of putting a key word in the search box, you are presented with an overwhelming amount of inspiring stories.
My story is no different. While I have a number of regular places ( read pages) I frequent for ideas, Truth be told, sometimes even a regular scene from a mall or road side is inspiring to me. But I am most grateful for some people in my life who never stop to amaze me with their talent, nobility and creative energy. I am so happy that some are my friends and some others I look up to.
I found the medium of clay to craft, from such an inspiring friend. Vijayeta is an artist who makes beautiful hand crafted jewelry with polymer clay. While I am not really a "jewelry" person, the details and flexibility the medium offers is great to create small but beautiful sculptures and artifacts. Which is exactly what I love doing on spare afternoon theses days. Especially with Diwali ( the celebration of lights for Indians) fast approaching some hand made clay lamps are welcoming change and fun to do.
There are a number of types of clay in the market suitable for jewelry and handicrafts.
Air- Dry clay :
It is the regular modelling clay and the most organic and cheapest type of clay available for modelling.
Polymer Clay :
Polymer clay is a type of hardenable modeling clay based on the polymer polyvinyl chloride (PVC). It typically contains no clay minerals, but like mineral clay a liquid is added to dry particles until it achieves gel-like working properties.Once done the part is oven baked to get the finished product.
Metal clay is a crafting medium consisting of very small particles of metal such as silver, gold, bronze, or copper mixed with an organic binder and water for use in making jewelry, beads and small sculptures.
All the above information is from Wikipedia.
All these are very similar in use, only deviation being the drying time and method.
Since the air-dry clay is the cheapest, it is what I use for my small projects. Making these small things are really easy and simple. All you need is patience, to make a design and drying time - lot of patience. Other than the clay itself, I have used only regular things available in any home, as knife, small bowls etc to make these. For added protection I have used a sealer as the top coat.
Basically, you decide on a shape and size of the model you want to make and mold it with hands. From small lamps to planters, beads to bowls possibilities are endless.
|In case you wonder - It is my own hand|
I used to wonder how Viji ( Vijayeta) found energy & time after her IT career and two kids in school and various other artistic endeavors ( she is very active with our Indian artistic associations ) for making those beautiful pieces of jewelry. But now I know because every time I see my small lamps lighted up or that imperfect bowl ( That is my first creation) holding nick knacks, it brings a smile - it is insanely gratifying.
|Ready for Diwali|
|My very first one|
Stay tuned for some "how-to" notes for some of these crafty decor artifacts and then some others and do get a tub of clay and join the club of "clay fans".