Thursday, March 13, 2014

Egyptian Faience- Amy Waller -2104

Had a great time at Clay Club last night. I am posting this video of Amy Waller doing her Egyptian Faience techniques. She did a great job! I think it is really brave for people to demo - for free- show their techniques and endure the insults of the crowd.  Amy did a great  job.

We also have one coming with Will Baker which was also fantastic. It was amazing to see what didn't make the video (since it is under 10 minutes) which was how he makes the surfaces so smooth!  Very interesting.

I will post Will's later today.



Marian Parkes said...

Amy, can polymer clay molds work with faience? Or would the release you have to use interfere with the migration of the soda?

Amy Waller said...

Hi Marian - do you mean a mold made from polymer clay? I don't know - I haven't used molds like that or any kind of release with Egyptian faience. My guess is that it might depend on the particular recipe and also how much water is in it, as well as the size, shape, detail, etc. of the mold. One issue I've run into is if the paste is on the wet side, it can lose its shape and detail as it sort of slumps at the beginning of the drying process. I'm wondering if the drying effect of a bisque mold might help at the early stages.

I have read of other people using various kinds of release (one I'm remembering off the top of my head is olive oil, used with a bisque mold), so it would certainly be worth a try. I've also read about people using cling wrap (Saran wrap) between the paste and the mold so that might be another thing to try.

Sorry for the long answer - let me know if any of it doesn't make sense and/or I didn't answer your question!

Marian Parkes said...

You answered it. I often use cornstarch with these molds. I wonder if one could use baking soda instead since it's in the paste?? Might be worth a try.

Amy Waller said...

Hi Marian - apologies for not responding sooner. I'm not sure, but I vaguely remember reading somewhere a suggestion to sprinkle baking soda on the faience items after they've dried and before they're fired. I couldn't find what I was remembering with a quick search, but I did find an old clayart post on Egyptian paste by Bob Wicks that includes the following:

"The Complete Compendum [sic] by Conrad suggests that you sift a mixture of 1/2 sodium and Borax over the finished product before firing."

The rest of his post is here:

The book referenced is John W. Conrad's "Ceramic Formulas: The Complete Compendium." I don't have a copy at hand, and I'm not sure if that is what I'm remembering reading, but here's the book info in case it's helpful for anyone:

Hope this helps! If you try it, I'd love to hear how it goes.

Unknown said...

Hi Amy, do you have poblems with beads fusing to the NiChrome wire. Have you put anything like AlSi on the wire first?

Thank you,
K. phelan

Amy Waller said...

Hi Kathryn - yes, I coat the wire with kiln wash and it helps a lot with that. Pieces will still stick occasionally, but the kiln wash makes it a lot easier to remove them.