I have been using a lot of “junk” clay to make mokume gane and I love the effect I get. A good friend recently sent me a large quantity of junk clay, cane ends and old damages canes so I decided to experiment a bit.
I took several of the old canes, worked them flat and then rolled them through the pasta machine so I had a smooth sheets to work with. (The following are the same steps I used for the scrap mokume gane tutorial) I then spritzed them with water and used a background rubber stamp to texture the sheets. I shaved off the raised areas with a sharp blade and set them aside for another project. (waste not want not) I swear it’s like Christmas morning every time I see what’s under the surface. 🙂 The colors and designs just appear magically. (I guess that’s why Jennifer Patterson called her Polymer Cafe article Hidden Magic) Here are some of the sheets I was able to product using old canes.
You can get nearly the same effect using several colors and extruding the clay. I like the way it has even stripes of colors through the pattern.
Here are some beautiful examples by artists in which the extruded technique was used.
If you do not own a clay extruder, I found a nice way for you to get a similar look. Ponsawan over at Silastone used a skinner blend jelly roll to simulate the extruded technique.
Here’s a picture tutorial by Ponsawan for the Skinner Blend Gane