Octagonal frames

I’ve had 15 really cool small octagonal frames for awhile.

Well actually 14. One of them’s a hexagon. They’re all handmade in hardwoods like cherry, mahogany and oak. I bought them from the art association because another artist was destashing them.

Even though they’re so nice, I can understand why. They’re an odd size. Oh, and they’re not all the SAME size either. Only two of them had glass and it looked like it was painstakingly cut and then they gave up…

So… I’ve been figuring out how I can use them in my upcoming challenge.

Normally I sculpt on a ceramic tile or glass. It’s hard, flat, and the clay pops off easily after it’s baked. I could have drawn an outline on a large tile and used that, but as you sculpt, the clay smudges and expands. Any lines would be covered and erased and it would be hard to recut them without ruining my sculpture.

It took a few hours (and my husbands help on the first few) but I was able to trace and cut templates/backer boards out of mat board.

Tip: Use a corkbacked metal ruler (it doesn’t slip and you can’t cut into it), a very sharp exacto style knife and multiple cuts as needed. Switch blades often.

The problem with mat board is that if you leave the clay on it for any length of time, the plasticizers (what keeps the clay pliable) will leach out into the mat board. Forget trying to leave it overnight and working on it over multiple days, as I often do – even during a challenge.

Solution: I baked a thin layer of clay on one of my matboard template. Then I peeled it off and used that for my backing. A couple drops of diluent, another layer of fresh clay, and I was ready to go.

I’m thinking steampunk or the fantastical… πŸ™‚

Posted by Skygrazer

Polymer clay addict and artist. Also fascinated by kaleidoscopes.

2 comments

Debbie Goodrow

Brilliant work-around. I thought you were going to paint enamel on the backer-board, but then I don’t know if that would be up to the temperatures needed. I think those octagonal shapes will work will with your sculpting!

I hadn’t thought of enamel… Not sure if it would work or not. Everything I thought of wasn’t oven safe πŸ™‚ So far prebaking the clay is working well though.

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