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New To Clay

How do I design a project?

How do I design a project? Depends on what sort of thing is being
made. I don't know what is going to manifest with the Natasha Beads
until I chop those canes up and toss or layer them, then make the
bead, cure, sand and finish. Then I get to see if that particular mix
of chop is worth replicating again. I'm the last to know what's going
on with the beads.

There's times when I just want to do ethnic food from one country.
I'll collect pictures from the web to do collages so I can get the
color right. Then I'll mix clay to get those colors and then make the
mini meals.

If I'm sculpting, I collect pictures from the web and do collages of
that actor and work on the portrait from the collages.
Ellen Durbin who plays Giggerota The Wicked, in Lexx is the latest
portrait doll I'm doing and I'm doing her in the Giggorata outfit,
with the two tone hair. As for her pose, there's a part of the first
Lexx movie, "I Worship His Shadow" where she escapes execution and jumps
down this tunnel tube passage way. I like that pose so I'm thinking
room box.

With doing portrait dolls of known actors, in known characters,
replicating scenes from a movie a lot of the work is already done for
me. The look of the room box, the character's clothing and hair, what
they look like. So there's not a lot of design work.

The only time I sketch or draw ideas for polymer clay is when I'm
standing in line somewhere, or am in transit, and I don't have the
clay there to do the thought experiment. Just write it down and give
it effort at home. Much of the experiments in clay has no plan, as
such. Like that folded clay dickie pendant things. No plan on that,
just experimenting with the clay and see what happens.

If I'm doing a cane I use a picture, like with Sassy the cat.
One could draw their own pictures and lay plastic over them and start
building up the design in snakes and sheets. It really is much nicer
to use your own original drawings for cane patterns and image
transfer, no problem with reselling and permissions violations.

Now I'm wondering if MargieN in Florida put plans together for her
Egyptian room box. Folks will just have to share their process. Funny
thing about room boxes, sometimes it just starts out like a real room,
blank walls, floor and ceiling. So you make what calls to you. I like
wood paneling in room boxes, adhesive shelf cover or with clay sheets.
Then there's shelves, furniture and accessories, then you put little
people in the box. Just like the Golden MerMaid.

There was no plan with her, but I had a bunch of sea side items, sea
shells, sea weed, a plate of shrimp cocktail...LOL, mini abalone, odds
and ends. I wanted to do the folded abalone for the Golden Mermaid's
new outfit because she was covered with gold and crimson and she got
put in a drawer and was sorely neglected. Then with the bumping and
moving about her gold and crimson outfit got crapped out, so we needed
to cover it with something.

A lot of what I do is without a plan. I'll play with clay, something
like the folded abalone will manifest and I'll have one flash, "That
would be so cool as a cocktail dress." and after a moment, "On a
Mermaid" and from there you move forward because it amused you. I
gathered up the sea side items that were already finished. Got a cigar
box, rolled out sheets for the walls and the floors, dug out that
neglected Mermaid and the rest is caught in the pictures there.

I think that when you're doing room boxes, filled with miniatures and
dolls, it's a lot like that. You'll see something that triggers an
idea and then you'll move on that idea. The trick is to have your
supplies handy. I have tools, rulers, cloth, leather, feathers, hair,
furniture, mini paintings, hinges and Woodsies, glue, tape, and clay
within reach of my work table. Polymer clay is but a part of the mini
scene equation.

If I have an idea I can grab a cigar box, pull out some sheets already
pressed, and start filling the box with that idea. A bit of cloth, a
handful of feathers, some clay leaves, a flower or 10, put a face in
there somewhere, spray some adhesive in the air like you just don't
care and then toss glitter at it. Then jump up and down and hollar
"YEAH!" no matter what the hour. LOL

Ya, that's the ticket.




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