I was wondering if anyone could help me, I'm having problems using my clay as it keeps breaking when i try and roll it out, It seems to just flake and break and I can never get a smooth surface, I have tried adding water so I know it isn't too dry (it isn't cracking round the edges). It is clay that I have re-used so I wondered if I had got too much oil into it which is causing it to not stick together?? is there anyway to remedy this?
One other query I have is can you torch fire copper clay and silver clay together?
Thanks very much
I think it might depend on the brand of clay you are using. I think they all seem to work a bit differently. One thing to consider is when you are working your clay are you working in a warm and dry environment and are you oiling up the tools and your fingers? One thing I have noticed is that the longer you work it, the harder it becomes to work it.
as to firing them together... I have no idea. I would think as long as the bond is firm, it would work ok though.
I agree with Medusa - cental heating does not go well with using clays.
If it is Art Clay Silver it does become more difficult to use the more water you add, but saying that, it is usable. With PMC brand I don't find it anymore difficult to use - though too much badger balm will make it unrollable! But if it is oil causing you can slowly add more water over a period of time and it will eventually 'overpower' the oil content and become usuable again.
As I don't know which you are using it is difficult to answer your query clearly.
No cracking around edges yet in the rest seems rather strange - when you added water did you mix it into the clay well, so that it penetrates all throughout the clay and not just on the outerparts?
Ref copper and silver - watch the different temperatures that they can be fired at. If I remember correctly copper has to be fired at a higher heat than silver - so I would check up on the temps.
Thanks medusa and pmc designs, sorry i haven't replied sooner i haven't had much time to think about jewellery making over christmas!
I'm using silver art clay, I don't think i'm working in an overly dry environment - i don't have central heating. Unfortunatley I do always use oils as I have very dry hands which the clay easily sticks to so I might try to keep adding water to over power the clay - thanks for the suggestion. When I do add water to my clay I roll it out as thinly as possible, paint it with water, roll it into a ball, then leave it to soak in over night in cling film so I don't think I'm doing anything wrong when adding the water. I shall try and take a photo of the clay when I roll it out so that you can see my problem a bit more clearly.
Just a thought Charlotte, when you roll it out 'as thin as possible', do you roll it into a ball using your hands? Hands, being generally warm, will soak out some of the water as you roll in. Best to keep in the cellophane (or something like a small freezer bag) and roll through that - so the cellophane is protecting the clay, then add water and roll up through the cellophane so that you don't actually touch the clay.
Apologies if you already do that!
Problem solved!! i haven't tried using cellophane to roll out the clay before, it works a treat and I now have smooth clay! I'm self taught in art clay so it is taking me a while to learn all these handy techniques! thanks very much for your assistance.