The Treasure Chest

Once upon a time there was a pirate called Edward of the Thorny islands (ok I’ve been gardening this week – having a fight with blackberry thorns…). One night after a big sea battle against another pirate ship there was a big big storm. The ship started sinking and Edward loaded the big copper treasure chest full of gold and diamonds trying to get to shore on a raft made from pieces of wood from the ship. Only the treasure chest made it to shore, badly beaten, and became buried in the sand. There it still lies today on this deserted island – waiting to be found…

Treasure Chest

I finally got around to experiment a bit with a whole bunch of new things! I know, the best is to try only one new thing at a time – but I just had to do this whole bunch of things at once!

The Facebook group – Metal Clay Europe, announced a challenge to make something on one or more of the themes Dragons, hidden treasure and architecture. I thought it would be a fun challenge and started sketching some things. Finally I decided to make a treasure chest in copper clay. I wanted the chest to have “proper” metal bands and thought I’d finally give the fun material “scratch foam” a real go (this was not the branded scratch foam but a similar product I found here in Sweden)
If you want to learn more about this wonderful medium I suggest you go to Wannaree Tanner’s blog and read more about what’s possible!

I also wanted to try out cutting patterns in the foam with my Silhouette cutter (the idea came from the great FB-group MC SILies), so that I got a mix of sharp and soft pattern lines. Said and done I created my drawing of the different parts and after cutting (the squares) and then burnishing the rest of the pattern with ball burnishers I got my texture plate all done.

treasure chest texture sheet

I started to build my treasure chest and although a bit crooked I think it went pretty well. For the first time I also made my hinges using an extruder. That was a really nice way of making them I must say! :o)
To make things even harder though, I made double hinges – that ment they’d really had to be aligned so that it was possible to open the lid. But BEFORE  firing Hey – it worked!! Yay!

chest before firing      treasure chest before firing

Since I hadn’t fired copper clay in the kiln I planned to use – I now thought I’d be doing this right so I fired a test piece made from the pattern with a bit of left over hinge tube as the bail – and hey presto it came out just as I hoped!

test piece

Hmmm… is this going too well…. ?? well – yes….

So I fired my treasure chest only problem was – I didn’t have anything to keep the carbon off the inside of the chest – and when it shrunk during the fire process – well it buckled – and the lid got stuck away from the chest – so the hinges broke… :o(


Ohh well – It was a great learning experience – and you know what a real treasure chest must be pretty beaten up when it’s found a hundred or more years later – worn down by sand, wind and sea! – So it added character to my little copper chest – and I learned a lot during the process!!

To finnish it off I tac fused some glass frit on a dichro piece of glass – and buried the chest with the “gold and diamonds” in some vermiculite…

gold and glitz

And it was a fun project to do – with lots of learning experience!!   :o)
/ Sara

Treasure Chest

wanna ePAW!

Ooooo time flies and I fly with it!
I have sooo many things in my head to try right now and I hope I’ll have time for a new one next week! 🙂

I guess one week’s ePAW could be that I joined Pinterest and I’ve started to pin a few things… I’m sure more will come – it’s so much fun to see all the beautiful, inspirational and fun pictures out there!
You can find my pins on pinterest.com/saraporle

In the absence of my own experimental projects I just wanted to share two great projects that I’d like to try 🙂

Patrik Kusek shares a video on his technique to make metal clay get a granulated look

Wanaree Tanner shows how she makes her wonderful Gallery Box Pendants

ePAW 3

Pew… last week was a busy week, with exams and exam projects…

The third ePAW (experimental Project A Week) will therefore be about one of the exam projects, namely the project I did for my class in video production. It’s sooo much fun but it takes soooo much time! 🙂 (I guess it goes faster with time though)

I guess the whole thing was kind of a big experiment but I especially found one little experiment extra much fun. Seven minutes into the film there’s a little sequence where you can see how the glass melts as the temperature in the kiln rises. I’ll write a little more on this in next (hopefully later this week really…) week’s blog. For now you can watch the result if you want to. Sorry, but if you don’t speak Swedish you’ll have some trouble understanding what I’m actually saying in the film…


ePAW 2

As promised my second experimental Project A Week is about my home-made studio lights.

I’m working on a small film project for a college class and I needed good lights for filming. Said and done, I got some tips on how to make studio lights, surfed the net for a while and combined my findings to these lights:Studio lights

This is how I made them:

Since I’m using low energy flourescent light heat isn’t a big issue here. Unfortunately I could only find warm white lights, therefore the white balance has to be adjusted when I film. The best would be if I could find cold white lights instead!

  • I used a thin masonite board (cheap and I had it already)
  • aluminum foil
  • duct tape
  • spray glue
  • 30 mm drill bit
  • 3 + 2 light sockets
  • 3 + 2 electrical cords with plug
  • 3 + 2 flourescent light bulbs (equal to regular light bulb of 100W)
  • 1 + 1 tripods
  • 1 + 1 nut, washer and bolt

I started by drawing and sawing the board:
What I used The pattern the sawed board

Then I drilled holes for the light sockets three in one and two in the other  and glued aluminum foil on one side of the board – to get even better light more could definitely be added!
drilled holes for the lamp holders The pieces with aluminum foil

I taped the lamps with duct tape – in hind site it would be smarter to glue with wood glue since the duct tape doesn’t stick that well with the masonite board – I’ll do this with them soon 🙂
taping it the lamp the lamp

Now I just had to screw in the light sockets and attach the cords and the bulbs and they were functional lights (but with no stand)
with light sockets the complete light Basse in the light

To make the stands I found a good tip on the internet where someone had used tripods for home-made lights. He had mounted the holder behind the light (by the light bulbs) but I thought it was better to mount the tripod onto one of the side panels. The great thing with using tripods is that the lights can be adjusted in hight and angle very easily.
light on tripod

The normal camera screw is removed (but can be put back again so that the tripod can be used for a camera again) and then a bolt and a nut is used to fasten the lamp. I also used a washer to make it more secure.
nut and bolt remove the camera screw insert new bolt secure

Now the lamps are finished and ready to use!
Ready to use Studio lights

This project has started the gears in my brain for some cheap, easy and adjustable smaller lights to use when I photograph my jewellery – but this will be a future experimental Project A Week! 🙂

Today I’ve done my Artist Compass Exercise for the start of 2012!

It’s a really good exercise created by Tonya Davidson of Artful Success to help you find out your compass words to help with your direction. Don’t we always need a bit of direction and a compass to find our way? You can do this exercise too if you just follow the links above!

My four compass words are:

  • Focus – I will focus on what I will benefit from and the things that will bring me closer to my goals.
  • Accomplish – I will accomplish what I’ve set out to do in life and in business.
  • Appreciate – I will appreciate the positive in my surroundings, people and things which will create an upward spiral with even better things.
  • Persevere – I will persevere with my good habits and choose where to put my energy

Those are my compass words for 2012. Now it’s your turn!

Happy Compassing! 🙂

ePAW 2012, week 1!

OK, I’m finally getting in to the Blog world!
My plans for this blog except from learning about blogging is to take on a challenge for the new year: ePAW 2012 🙂

I’ve always liked to learn new things and to experiment. My challenge for 2012 is to do and blog about one experimental Project A Week.
It can be different types of projects, but my main goal is to have fun, learn new things and develop both my creativity and skills during this process!

First week’s project is actually this Blog!
I haven’t blogged before and to make it even more challenging I’m doing it in English which isn’t my first language (Swedish is). So I hope you’ll excuse my English and spelling when they’re not as they should… 🙂

Next week will be about a couple of home-made studio lights I’m working on right now…