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PCC Chats With
Sarejane Helm

April 4, 2004
Topic: Personalized Tools and Production Techniques


cjblanton: Entered room.
cjblanton: Good afternoon.
Sarajane: hi there!
cjblanton: Can't believe I finally got into the chat room. I've been unable to get in for several days.
Sarajane: oh, sometimes the web is that way!
cjblanton: I don't know if others are having the same problem, so it will be interesting to see how many people turn up today.
cjblanton: I think it's mainly Delphi that's the problem.
Sarajane: yes, I also got too busy and forgot to remind people
Sarajane: aol has its own funky qualities--together its tough!
cjblanton: Yes, I used to be on AOL. Got tired of getting kicked off, not to mention all the penis enlargement ads
cjblanton: DH's is just the right size, thank you very much.
Sarajane: they offer so many things in todays market
Sarajane: tho, given the state of my garden, maybe I DO want to make the aquantance of a Russian Farm Girl
cjblanton: Now there's an idea. Probably not what the advertiser has in mind.
Sarajane: little do they know I want weeding!
Sarajane: not wedding
Sarajane: so, what have you been claying lately?
cjblanton: I just made a cane - only my second attemp. I extruded square snakes in pastel translucent colors and formed a square cane.
Sarajane: oooh, like a quilt block?
PoKoPat: Entered room.
Sarajane: Hiya Pat!
PoKoPat: Good afternoon ladies!
cjblanton: Yes. Each color was wrapped in a thin piece of white.
cjblanton: Hi Pat.
PoKoPat: Hi CJ. What are we discussing?
Sarajane: that really helps it show when reduced
cjblanton: Porn ads and my cane.
PoKoPat: rofl
Sarajane: just started talking abbout extruded canes
Nutreeno: Entered room.
PoKoPat: That's something I've been meaning to try.
cjblanton: I have more of the extruded colors. I was thinking of wrapping them in translucent.
Sarajane: hello!
PoKoPat: Extruded canes, that is. ;)
Sarajane: the trans darkens, and I dont like the look, you might tho
Nutreeno: Greetings--I'm late.
Sarajane: try it in black
Sarajane: hello!
cjblanton: I wrapped one piece in black but wanted to keep the colors light and spring-like.
PoKoPat: Don't feel like the Lone Ranger, Nutreeno - I just got here.
Sarajane: it tends to look more like stained glass when wrapped
cjblanton: Yes, I imagine it would.
PoKoPat: What kind of cane are you building?
Sarajane: or try oit in silver, or copper
Sarajane: a mix of silver and black would be most like glass
cjblanton: It was 5 colors of pastel translucent - pink, purple, yellow, green, blue. Extruded in square snakes then put into a square log.
PoKoPat: ahhh, sort of a square lace cane?
cjblanton: or a quilt block.
PoKoPat: of course. silly me. ;)
cjblanton: I had a lot of air pockets in it.
Sarajane: has everybody seen my new index page with Leigh's lace canes?
cjblanton: I tried to roll it from the center toward the ends to squeeze the air out, but still had some bubbles.
Sarajane: you have to pack them really carefully in the start
cjblanton: Yes, I thought I did, but I'll have to try again.
cjblanton: No, haven't seen your index page yet.
Sarajane: when you lay the pieces, look at it from the bottom too
Nutreeno: Sarajane, what's the site with the index page? I'd love to see it.
Sarajane: here, I'll pop up the page
Nutreeno: ty
Sarajane: did that work? I dont see it...
cjblanton: Nope.
Sarajane: *SHOWURL* http://www.polyclay.com
Sarajane: its halfway down, in the ThankYou card
Nutreeno: Wowza!!!
Sarajane: did you find it?
cjblanton: *PART* Left room.
Nutreeno: I'll say!! Can't wait to read it all!!
Sarajane: oops, wonder if that bounced her out!
Nutreeno: i can see i am going to have to get this book. I have the Polymer Clay Impression book and love it, love it.
Sarajane: finally got that send url thing working too! now I can pop up pages
Sarajane: oh, thank you!
Sarajane: say, Pat---whatcha been working on lately?
Sarajane: me, I'm learning to use my new camera
Sarajane: ssetting up a place to shoot how-tos
Nutreeno: what kind of camera didja get?
Sarajane: its a HP
PoKoPat: Open eggs, SJ.
PoKoPat: brb
Sarajane: with 5.3 mp
Sarajane: ok
Nutreeno: sounds great--keep those how-to's coming!
Sarajane: and I am learning not only to use it, but also to process the pics..
Sarajane: so its a learning curve, but it'll really open things up
Sarajane: there should be several new things coming--books, printed how tos, on line how tos
Nutreeno: tell us about your set-up for shooting sequential how-tos!
Sarajane: and lots of new pics for my site!
Sarajane: well, the tripod is essential
Sarajane: also indirect lighting
PoKoPat: sorry - that was my pizza. :)
Nutreeno: save me a slice with mushrooms.
Sarajane: I am very lucky to have worked with Bobby Grieser who does all the photos in my two books
Sarajane: me too!!!
PoKoPat: hehe, ham and pineapple, ya goofs.
Nutreeno: his photos are great---so detailed--it's not easy to photograph the fine nuances of your subtle colors.
Sarajane: oh, Andy's fave!
Sarajane: we set things up and light very carefully
Sarajane: considering most are shot in a basement, its not bad!
Sarajane: I'm learning how to use the macro settings, and override the flash and all that
Sarajane: digital is far less expensive to learn that 35mm
Nutreeno: you are making me want a new camera.
PoKoPat: I haven't gotten that far yet. Just got a digicam a week ago.
Nutreeno: my digital camera is four years old and therefore ancient.
Sarajane: I've been wanting one and waiting for several years and now I have my mitts on a good one
Nutreeno: you were smart to wait--they are lightyears better than they used to be!
Sarajane: the hand beads pic and the workroom pic on that index page show pics at 1/4 resolution possibel!
Sarajane: yes, quality went up and price went down recently
Nutreeno: i was just gonna say, the hand beads pic is GREAT!! They are my "hands-down" favorite.
PoKoPat: what did you get, SJ?
Sarajane: so it was the time to get one!
Sarajane: HP digital 5.3
PoKoPat: wow
Sarajane: its lovely...
Sarajane: also does up to two minutes of video
Sarajane: so there will be live feeds of how tos coming
Sarajane: but I have tofigure out HOW first!!
Nutreeno: So can we expect to see VIDEO demos soon? Hmmmm? :-)
Nutreeno: Ahh, you anticipated my greedy question!
Sarajane: yep, just gotta figure out the mechanics
PoKoPat: look out world, SJ's entering the 21st century. ;)
Sarajane: really...so many machines have entered my home in the last 4 months
Nutreeno: Best of the past, present and future!
Sarajane: yes, theres always a place for good tools
Sarajane: and this is the Big New One this year
PoKoPat: Oh, SJ, I've also been working on faux dichro, using that acrylic nail stuff.
Sarajane: now I can document classes
Sarajane: oh, hows it going?
Nutreeno: oooh, tell all!
PoKoPat: Great. Took a couple of tries to get my hand back in.
PoKoPat: Been a while since I had acrylic nails.
PoKoPat: But I can make the clay surface uneven, as they do with glass,
PoKoPat: and then coat with the acrylic, and it evens the surface.
Sarajane: I saw a catalog meant for nail-doers=---it had COOL stuff in it
PoKoPat: And the depth is incredible.
Sarajane: oooooooo!
PoKoPat: Kathi does real dichro, and said my faux was the closest she'd seen to the real thing.
Nutreeno: Congratulations--that's quite an accomplishment!! Gonna post pictures? Can't wait to see this stuff!!
PoKoPat: And it isn't even machine buffed yet!
Sarajane: its a great look---o, once you buff I bet it will REALLY stun!
Nutreeno: My husband just produced an ancient buffer from the basement this weekend--my life will never be the same!
PoKoPat: Of course I'll post pics. hehe - they can't keep me from posting pics.
Nutreeno: Great!!
Sarajane: yes, we have one in the garage, also ancient--and my DH just cleaned it out and unearthed it this week
Sarajane: so that will be another new/old tool!
PoKoPat: Hubby got me a delta for Mother's day a year ago.
PoKoPat: I was all smiles.
Sarajane: spring cleaning is a wonderful thing, esp. when others are working the hard parts
Nutreeno: I am so in love with this poor old machine it's kind of sick. It's teal colored and is sporting a new Canton muslin wheel. Sigh.
PoKoPat: hehe
Sarajane: love is where we find it, Nutreeno!
PoKoPat: How's the test on the Versitex going, SJ?
Nutreeno: It's covered with dust and I MEAN to make time to clean it, but it's just too much m ore fun buffing beads!
Sarajane: I am getting ready to do lots of new things...my space is ready, and so am I
Nutreeno: what's versitex?
Sarajane: You mean the Enviro Tex stuff, Pat?
PoKoPat: Did I get the name right?
PoKoPat: Yeah, envirotex. sorry.
Sarajane: the bartop stuff?
Nutreeno: oooh, envirotex, we used that to make ponds and rivers on my son Andrew's train layout. LOVE IT!
Sarajane: I havent gotten any farther, but theres no chemical trouble showing on the first pieces
PoKoPat: you were testing it on a table, right?
Sarajane: its over a year now
Sarajane: yes, its great stuff!
PoKoPat: That's good to know.
PoKoPat: That would mean pc pieces could be used outdoors, wouldn't it?
Sarajane: and it seems compatable, at least short term!!
cjblanton: Entered room.
Nutreeno: Last year we made a model of a cell for my son's science class project and embedded the cured PC parts in CANDLE GEL and they still haven't broken down at all.
Sarajane: maybe for outdoors--the major trouble is with fading of colors
cjblanton: Finally......Took me forever to get back into the room.
Nutreeno: welcome back!
Sarajane: I though maybe you bounced, CJ--welcome back!
Sarajane: i think maybe the envirotex would help protect against fading
Sarajane: and certainly agains water damage
Sarajane: tho my bathroom PC pieces are holding upjust fine
Nutreeno: what did you make for your bathroom?
Sarajane: with nothing on them, or with flecto
Sarajane: I have the rose tray with perfume bottle tops too, and jar lids
Sarajane: some jar lids are in the shower
Sarajane: no truble so far except the glue loosened
Nutreeno: wow, this is good to know.
Sarajane: the glue was Sobo
Sarajane: and two yrs in a steamy bathroom window is hard use
Sarajane: for glue!
PoKoPat: i'd say so1
PoKoPat: Sorry, was typing one handed.
PoKoPat: SJ, doesn
PoKoPat: phooey
Nutreeno: yeah, rub it in that you've got pizza and we don't.
PoKoPat: Actually, I'm on dessert now.
cjblanton: I've got soup.
PoKoPat: SJ, doesn't the envirotex protect from UV rays?
Sarajane: yes it does
Nutreeno: i'm suddenly hungry. and i suddenly want some envirotex. and a new camera.
cjblanton: What is envirotex?
PoKoPat: rofl, Nutreeno.
Sarajane: flecto has uv protectant too
PoKoPat: I didn't know that!
Sarajane: enviro-tex is a two part acrylic thats used in table tops and bartops
Nutreeno: envirotex is this two-part plastic liquidy stuff you make to seal stuff under, like typewriter keys.
Sarajane: you ever see tables at subway, with old papers under?
cjblanton: oic
Sarajane: or restraunts like that?
Sarajane: they pour this stuff over any old thing...and it sets up clear
Sarajane: any old thing like cool paer..or cloth..or pc
cjblanton: Yeah, it looks like a thick plastic coating.
PoKoPat: Now that would make some cool faux dichro.
Sarajane: thats what it is
PoKoPat: No sanding.
cjblanton: and it works ok with poly clay?
Sarajane: so far
cjblanton: where can you get it?
Nutreeno: it would be great for dichro because it is crystal crystal clear, like glass.
Sarajane: it has bubbles if yo uare not careful
PoKoPat: uh oh
cjblanton: bah, bubbles!
Nutreeno: we just got a big acrylic fish tank and it's so cool, it's like the fish are floating in the room with us--it's so crystal clear.
Sarajane: heat it with a torch
Sarajane: hang on a minute
PoKoPat: k
Sarajane: *SHOWURL* http://envirotex.com
Sarajane: rats...not it
Sarajane: I'll find it
PoKoPat: Say, Nutreeno, did you have breakfast this morning?
Sarajane: i'll look later
Nutreeno: Gotta go pick up my son. Thanks everybody, this was so much fun! No breakfast yet, but maybe I'll take my son out for lunch! Bye!!
Nutreeno: *PART* Left room.
PoKoPat: Bye!
PoKoPat: oops
Sarajane: see you!
cjblanton: She was too fast for us.
PoKoPat: sigh, another tease opportunity lost. ;)
PoKoPat: We could just google for envirotex, sj.
Sarajane: true!
Sarajane: you want to or shall I ?
PoKoPat: I think I've seen it at Lowe's.
Sarajane: let me, I can paste it
PoKoPat: Okay.
cjblanton: It will probably be something else that is hard to find in Canada. Sigh.
Sarajane: yes, thats where theyd have it
Sarajane: its expensive too
PoKoPat: yeah, we were considering it for the garage floors - but that's a lot of floor. Three bays worth.
cjblanton: I can't get Pinata inks and so far can't find Lumiere paint.
Sarajane: here we go
PoKoPat: cj, can you order online from someplace here?
Sarajane: *SHOWURL* http://www.eti-usa.com/consum/envtex/envlite.htm
PoKoPat: or is the shipping too high?
cjblanton: For some things. Apparently there is a problem shipping inks that are alcohol based. Plus I end up paying a nasty customs brokerage fee.
PoKoPat: ewww, that's bad.
PoKoPat: SJ, how thick is the envirotex?
Sarajane: cj did you try Dharma trading co?
Sarajane: I get the catalog for clothing blanks, and dye them--they carry Lumiere and Pinata
cjblanton: It isn't a problem finding the stuff in the US, it's the cost of getting it shipped up here.
Sarajane: its as thick as you want to pour it if you dam it, or self leveling its about 3/4 to an inch
Sarajane: so come visit!
PoKoPat: Sorry, wasn't clear enough.
cjblanton: And some mail order places won't ship to Canada and/or they won't take a Canadian credit card.
PoKoPat: I meant, what's the viscosity?
Sarajane: go to Vermont, have things mailed to a PO box there!
cjblanton: Yes, but that is still expensive to do - gas, etc.
Sarajane: its very syrupy Pat, and self levels to a thickness of 1bout 3/4 inch without any dam
cjblanton: Buffalo is just an hour and a half away.
PoKoPat: hmm, would be a little difficult to use on a bead, then.
Sarajane: yes
Sarajane: not really good for wearables
cjblanton: because it is too thick?
Sarajane: but you could pour for a faux dichro that would be fab
Sarajane: yes
PoKoPat: well, pooh. always looking for ways to get a thick clear coat.
PoKoPat: with a minimum of work. I'm just lazy at heart.
Sarajane: youd want smaller flatter pieces, I think--tho experiments need to be done with thinner layers brushed rather than poured
cjblanton: If you dipped a bead??
Sarajane: tooo many new things to try at once!!
PoKoPat: hehe, I know that feeling.
Sarajane: even dipping in flecto is not good
Sarajane: this stuff takes 8 hrs to set
cjblanton: That's a long time to hold a bead and spin it around.
Sarajane: Pat, I suspect for flat pieces, theres great potential
Sarajane: yes!!
cjblanton: I get to go to a clay retreat in a week or so.
Sarajane: oh, where?
cjblanton: Morrisburg, Ontario.
cjblanton: I'm not sure if it is just for the Southern Ontario PC Guild or for Clayamies also.
PoKoPat: Well, I suppose I should finish these experiments first.
Sarajane: you getting ready for any shows?
PoKoPat: who?
Sarajane: you getting ready for any shows, Pat?
cjblanton: not me
PoKoPat: nope. Shows scare the dickens outta me.
PoKoPat: way too shy.
Sarajane: I have a lag going here!
Sarajane: you have things in the family store tho, right?
cjblanton: There was a huge craft show in Toronto last week. At least 3 polymer clay artists.
PoKoPat: Not a family store. A local gift shop, and the local art gallery.
cjblanton: One doing miniatures for doll houses, one doing jewelry and one doing light switch plates and other objects.
PoKoPat: And the gift shop owners keep asking me to go to shows with them.
Sarajane: really, CJ, thats a lot of PCers
cjblanton: It is a huge show.
PoKoPat: Sounds like.
Sarajane: oh Pat--youd have a good time and break the ice, so to speak
Sarajane: better than by yourself
cjblanton: The lady doing the minitures is amazing. A lot of it is food - cakes, hors d'oervres, plates of sushi.
Sarajane: thats wehre a lot of PC started in the 30s and 40s
PoKoPat: I suppose, SJ. But I'm so tongue tied (in person, that is) with strangers.
cjblanton: You could take a keyboard and type to them :-)
PoKoPat: rofl
Sarajane: so wear something you made--that 'll do it
PoKoPat: That might actually work, CJ. hehehe
Sarajane: that's break the tension!
DonnaPyro: Entered room.
DonnaPyro: hi all
cjblanton: HI Donna
PoKoPat: Well hi, Donna.
DonnaPyro: :)
PoKoPat: Rescue me by asking a question.
Sarajane: Hi there!
DonnaPyro: ummmmmm
PoKoPat: SJ and CJ are trying to talk me into doing shows.
PoKoPat: hehe
Sarajane: we're picking on her
DonnaPyro: oh cool Pat
DonnaPyro: you should
PoKoPat: Oh, you're a big help.
PoKoPat: rofl
DonnaPyro: hehehe
Sarajane: thanks Donna!
DonnaPyro: yw
PoKoPat: Actually ... once the weather warms up a bit, I may just go to a couple with them.
DonnaPyro: I own a few of pokoPat's artsy items :)
PoKoPat: Sort of an artist visiting, thing.
Sarajane: not even all by her lonesome----as someones guest, she can go and schmooze
PoKoPat: I schmooze great with a keyboard.
DonnaPyro: lol
Sarajane: well, time to stretch those skills
PoKoPat: Actually, I'm getting better. Cuz people keep admiring my pendants that I wear.
Sarajane: go for a few hours, not the whole day
PoKoPat: Small steps, eh?
cjblanton: You could wear a pendant with a price tag attached.
PoKoPat: snicker
DonnaPyro: hehe
PoKoPat: that sounds like soemthing I'd do accidentally.
PoKoPat: hehe
DonnaPyro: just call her Mini Pearl
cjblanton: Howdeee!
Sarajane: Minnie Pearl would be pleased
PoKoPat: Actually, she probably would.
cjblanton: We're all showing our age here.
PoKoPat: Say, can we skip back to the extruded canes for a bit?
cjblanton: sure
Sarajane: sure!
Sarajane: have you seen the darlin disks?
PoKoPat: Well, could you use the extruder to make shaped canes? Like a flower, or 4 leaf clover?
DonnaPyro: *PART* Left room.
PoKoPat: Uh, nope.
Sarajane: yes!
PoKoPat: uh oh, she bounced.
Sarajane: the disks extrude amazingly complex designs
PoKoPat: because I have to say - shaped canes give me huge trouble.
cjblanton: You could extrude any of the shapes and then try to surround them with other clay.
PoKoPat: But if you could make them with an extruder it would mean little or no reducing, right?
Sarajane: they have a HUGE selection
Sarajane: yes, make at actual size!!!
PoKoPat: Do the Darlin disks fit the regular extruder?
Sarajane: the clay gun
PoKoPat: I think mines a Kemper
PoKoPat: lemme look
Sarajane: yes, but they are acrylic, not metal--wash them after
PoKoPat: huh - no name on the silly thing.
PoKoPat: it's the all metal one, looks like a giant syringe, with no needle.
Sarajane: they fit the Kemper and also the pusher thing that is the Big TimeExtruder
cjblanton: I've had great luck wrapping the clay with paper before putting it into the clay gun. No cleaning necessary.
PoKoPat: I tried that, and wound up with paper in my clay.
Sarajane: have you ev er tried it with two colors on purpose?
cjblanton: I wrap it in parchment paper - the kind you use for baking. Just wrap once with a little overlap.
Sarajane: its very cool, they come out wrapped
PoKoPat: extruding two colors at once? yep.
cjblanton: haven't tried that yet.
PoKoPat: pretty neat look.
PoKoPat: Well, I have a lot of food for thought now.
Sarajane: its fun, but hard to control a bit
cjblanton: I saw somewhere to cut small circles of clay in different colors then stack them up and put them in the gun. You get a variegated snake.
Sarajane: if you let them cool off first its easier to use them to build canes
Sarajane: cool!!!
Sarajane: wonder if you started with a bullseye cane....
PoKoPat: hmmm, I don't think that would work.
cjblanton: It would come out randomly because you can't really control how the clay moves from the wide tube through the little opening in the disk.
PoKoPat: It would push the center out first.
PoKoPat: maybe a half and half log?
Sarajane: well, stuff to play with!
PoKoPat: like two half circles.
Sarajane: that would be cool!
cjblanton: lots of things to try.
PoKoPat: Ladies, I have to go. My to do list is huge today, and I'm only a third of the way thru it.
Sarajane: I should also
PoKoPat: I still have to draw that silly camel.
Sarajane: its spring---lots thats been put off!
PoKoPat: SJ, it's been a blast, as usual.
cjblanton: Nice chatting with you guys. See you next time.
Sarajane: thanks for coming, Pat!
Sarajane: see you soon!
PoKoPat: CJ, stop by some morning at PCJ for the coffee chat.
Sarajane: have fun with your claying!
cjblanton: Too early for me!
PoKoPat: Bye all, have a great rest of the day!!
cjblanton: Bye
PoKoPat: *PART* Left room.
Sarajane: seeya!
cjblanton: Bye
cjblanton: *PART* Left room.
Sarajane: bye, CJ!
Sarajane: *LOG at 4/6/2004 2:21:23 PM* OFF