Monday, May 04, 2015

Ask BeadFX: Differences in types of clay and classes in June?

from our question inbox: 
 
Hi there

Looking on your website at the various classes being offered in June, I see there are three different classes for clay - Art Clay Silver, Prometheus Metal Clay, and Hadar's Clay. What is the difference between the three types of clay and the classes offered? 
 
signed
Clayly confused 


Dear Clayly

Hi there - good question!


All three types - Art Clay Silver, Prometheus, and Hadar's Clay - are 
"metal" clays - they are a very finely ground powdered metal, mixed with
 an organic binder. You work it and shape it like a pottery clay, 
rolling, wetting, drying, carving, etc. It is then fired to burn off the
 binders and leave you with a solid-metal finished piece. (The metal 
powder doesn't melt, the metal powder joins to itself in a process 
called "sintering" - but that was probably more technical than you 
needed!)


These are 3 different brands, from 3 different manufacturers. 

Art Clay Silver is pure, precious silver clay - so that your finished 
piece is made of fine silver. It is one of the older brands of metal 
clay. The advantage is that your finished piece has the inherent value 
of the silver in it. The disadvantage is that it is expensive, which 
makes some students feel inhibited about working with it, and it is not 
the easiest to work with. 

Hadar's Clay comes as a powder, and you add water and mix it yourself. 
Some people find this fun, others are a little intimidated by this "roll
your own" approach. It is less expensive, however - as it does not 
contain silver - and does have a nice variety of metals. 

Prometheus is newish to market, and new to us, although not new to our 
instructor. It is a pre-mixed clay, and comes in only two colours, 
copper and bronze. It seems to be gaining a good following for being 
forgiving and easy to use and has very attractive pricing. 

Which you choose depends on what you want to do with it, but I would 
suggest that either the Hadar's or the Prometheus are a less expensive 
way to start. 

Hope that helps! 
 

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