The Art of Polymer Clay Creative surface effects
This book covers a considerable number of potential surface possibilities to use with your polymer clay. Donna says that she hopes that the book will provide inspiration. She targets both beginners and experienced clayers and sensibly develops ideas from previously described ideas. The book has 175 pages and is filled with information and illustrations.
How often do we flick through a new-to-us-book but don’t actually take in just how useful it might be? It is only on the 40thpage that she starts showing actual techniques, having spent the pages prior explaining about clays, tools and materials, and basic techniques. This may not appear to be relevant for the more experienced clayers but one can surely pick up extra information as a result of reading through (how many of us actually know how to use repel gel for instance?)
Having explained how to make beads (the first minor project) she explains how important finishing ones work is. It is only then that she starts discussing colour, blending and mica shift. Then there is a project using the new skill of producing mica shift. The organisation is progressive.
She uses this same style as one continues through the book, explaining a technique and then offering a project using the skills (even adding the occasional extra tips as inserts) There are sections on stamping, image transfer, textures, paints, inks and pigments, and liquid clays. She even offers techniques for making moulds. The systematic organisation is quite admirable.
There really are some first class examples of ‘contributing artists’ (listed as an index) scattered throughout the book too, and the added fun images used in the introduction and more in the different indexes at the end are a delight (shoes galore).
This is a comprehensive and well organised book and that it is already almost fifteen years old does not detract from the value of the content. I can’t fault it: it is a worthwhile addition to your library of techniques whether you are a beginner or an experienced clayer.
Reviewed by Penny Vingeo