Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Black Mountain Paper Clay - Part 1

Black Mountain clay (both the sculpture and potter's variety) from Aardvark is one of my favorite colored traditional clay. I like the deep brown color I get when it's fired to Cone 10 reduction. Most of the time I do not use any glaze on this clay in my sculpture work.

I decided to make a paper clay version of it from my left over Black Mountain clay in my studio. This article will be in 3 parts.

Part 1 - Making the pulp
Part 2 - Making the Black Mountain clay slurry
Part 3 - Mixing the pulp and the clay slurry

Part 1 - Making the pulp
The sequence of pictures correspond to the notes on the left side.

1. To make the paper pulp, I decided to use left over paper packing instead of a roll of toilet paper, just because I have them around the house and I wanted to experiment using this material. (first picture)

2. The paper packing was torn up into small pieces and put into a 5 gallon painters bucket. (2nd picture)

3. It was soaked overnight. You can also let it soak for a couple of days, if you like, to facilitate the blending of the paper into pulp. (3rd picture)

4. I used an old hand held immersion kitchen blender to cut up and blend the paper packaging into pulp. Adding more water helped in the blending. This takes a bit of time. I had to do this in batches since I can only go so deep with the immersion blender.
(4th picture)

5. Make sure the paper packaging is completely broken up. To test, mix about a tablespoon of pulp with water in a measuring cup. Stir well. You should not see bits of packaging at all. When all you see is a milky emulsion, then your pulp is good. (last picture)


Michelle said...

Hello, Do you have a list of ingredients Also I only see the first step in making the paper clay which is soaking your choice of paper in water and then further instructions 😕

Anthony Foo said...

HI Michelle,

If you do a search using "Part 2" and "Part 3" in the search box, you will see the rest of the post. Hope this helps.

Anthony Foo said...

Here is the link to part 2

And part 3