Whenever I am working on a complicated project, I break out a manila file folder and create a cardboard model of my concept. Last year when I created the linked bracelet for NEST, I used folder cardboard to figure out how to link my pieces and to find out how many pieces I would need for my length. This process also allows me to figure out problems along the way.
I am in the process of creating a box in PMC3. The box has to end up a specific size after firing, so I made a model of the finished size out of the cardboard. Then, I separated the parts, scanned them, and enlarged them 118% to allow for shrinkage. The pieces become templates for cutting out my clay.
Now, I have to figure out some complicated angles for my lid. The top of the lid is already fired. I couldn't fit the cardboard to the unfired clay, so I am creating my model now.
After fitting the folder board under the top, I disassemble it to make my template and then enlarge it in the scanner to compensate for shrinkage. This saves me from making lots of mistakes in metal clay!
Until next time, have fun claying around!
by Janet Alexander