Welcome to my pet and family portrait blog. If you have commissioned a portrait you can see how it is progressing. If you would like to commission me to paint your pet, family or friend then visit my site at www.katetugwellportraits.com
In the midst of working on commissions and teaching a series of summer art workshops I took time out last Saturday to attend a silver clay making course with a couple of friends and it was so much fun I decided to include it in my blog - after all, it's another creative pursuit! The courses are run by Paula Louise Paton in her workshop/Aladdin's cave near Newick in East Sussex. We had just 16g of PMC or precious metal clay to play with, which seemed very small when I removed it from the packet, but in just a day I made much more than I thought I would, especially as I chose the biggest leaf cutter for the first piece. Paula demonstrated how to roll out the clay to the desired thickness using the thickness of playing cards as a measure and showed us how to stamp textures into the surface, make molds and use existing molds, how to hand fire the silver using a blowtorch, stick bits together using silver paste. We learned loads and at the end of the day our little lumps of carefully carved and shaped clay went into the kiln brown and came out silver (well white actually). Pure alchemy! And with some soldering of jump rings and earring backs, a bit of polishing up and patinating we all felt very pleased with ourselves and had a right laugh to boot!! Here's a pic of all the bits I produced and if you'd like a go yourself check out: http://www.learnsilverclay.co.uk but I'll warn you, it's pretty addictive and could be quite a costly hobby.