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PC04: Creating Vessels

w/ Donna Kato


video sleeve image

$24.95 + S&H

Creating Vessels covers:

Tools and Materials
Fixed Armature Vessel
Woven Vessel
Carved Vessel
Removable Armature Vessel
Free Form Vessel
Balloon Method Vessel

Approx. Running Time: 56 minutes

You Can Now Turn Ordinary Glass, Ceramic, and Wood Vessels Into Art...
With A Master Clay Artisan As Your Guide.

To clay artisans, Donna Kato is a name that's synonymous with quality. Now, imagine learning to work with clay with one of the Master Artisans as your guide, whose articles are regularly featured in leading arts, crafts and jewelry making magazines.

"Creating Vessels" is the fourth video in a four Volume set from Mindstorm Productions featuring renowned Master Polymer Clay Artisan, Donna Kato. The series teaches you to work with clay to transform ordinary objects into artistic forms. In this Volume you'll learn a series of techniques to turn ordinary glass, ceramic, and wood vessels into works of art. These techniques include: Fixed Armature, Woven Vessels, Carved Vessels, Removable Armature, Free Form Vessels, and the Balloon Method.

Because this is a technique driven video, you won't find specifics regarding the color or brand of clay that you use. "I prefer to leave those details to you and your imagination," says Donna. What she will demonstrate is a variety of ways to create and embellish vessels with carvings, woven patterns, molded impressions, gold leaf, patina, and stone effects.

In addition to clay, you'll need a variety of tools to complete the projects on this video. They are all outlined in detail and include items that are common to clay artisans, such as a pasta maker to shape and condition the clay, and a sharp blade to cut it. You'll also need some common household items such as baby oil and Armor-All.

The first method you'll learn is fixed armature. This is perhaps the easiest method to create polymer clay vessels. "Armature is anything that forms a skeletal structure and support," says Donna. It's the mold you use to create your vessel. A fixed armature remains joined to the clay after it's cured.

Using a glass votive candle holder as an armature, Donna demonstrates how easy it is to cover it with Gold Sculpey III clay. Glass is the perfect material to use when creating fixed armatures. But you're free to use any material as long as it can withstand the curing process. Plaster, however, will be particularly challenging because the clay doesn't adhere to it as well as it does to other surfaces. But if you do decide to choose a clay vessel as your armature, Donna offers tips to make it easier.

During her demonstration, Donna reminds viewers of the importance of first conditioning the clay before working with it. She also offers suggestions for avoiding and removing air pockets from the clay. Then using a technique she teaches in "Introduction To Polymer Clay," Volume I of the series, Donna uses scrap clay to create a decorative fish mold. She then applies the fish to the candle holder to embellish it and give a finishing touch.

Variety is what makes decorative embellishments stand out. And so Donna also shares a great tip for insuring that your decorations and embellishments don't all look the same.

Another way to decorate your fixed armature vessel is to cover it with a woven texture. And so, after mastering the fixed armature method, you'll take it one step further by creating a woven vessel.

Once again you're guided step-by-step through the process of covering a glass vessel with clay. You'll then watch as Donna cuts and criss-crosses strips of clay around the vessel to give it the woven look. Finally you'll apply gold clay and baby oil across the criss- cross pattern for the perfect finishing touch.

You can also embellish your vessels by cutting patterns into the clay. When carving, your choice of clay is critical since some clays tend to chip easier than others. Here Donna offers her suggestions for choosing the clay that will be easiest to work with should you decide to add carved patterns to your repertoire.

And don't be intimidated if you're just starting out! Intricate patterns and designs are easy with a master teacher like Donna to guide you. Her calm voice of experience will guide you through even the most difficult patterns.

After mastering the fixed armature method, you'll move on to creating removable armature vessels. They're removable because you use the vessel as a mold to create the shape, but afterwards it's separated from the clay. In this section you'll also learn of an embellishing technique called a "crackle pattern" which you'll create by combining clay, gold leaf, and translucent Sculpey III.

The final technique you'll learn is the Balloon method where you'll create a vessel using only clay and your hands. You'll also learn how to integrate embossing powder with clay to create a grainy "stone" look.

Finally it's time to create your own armature! You'll do this by using biodegradable peanuts and aluminum foil wrapped in clay! You'll then see how working with different colors of liquid Sculpey can create a variety of finishes and textures.

The video ends with a montage of a variety of polymer clay vessels you can create using the technique you learned on this tape.