Cold porcelain Is Less Forgiving
Tips From A Flower Artist
by Ro Underwood
Cold porcelain is less forgiving than using commercial air dry clay.
I've been making orchids and other flowers (the Japanese and Thai clay are quite expensive and hard to get via mail). When using Luna (Japanese) and Thai clay, the flowers tend to weep when not in air-conditioned rooms.
So I started to make cold porcelain which dries to be sturdy and glass like. If you don't bend the wire or petals while the clay is still wet, you're stuck! Paperclay is wonderful if you're making fruit and vegetables since you don't have to tweak them as they dry.
Cold porcelain, however is extremely inexpensive and wonderful to use for modeling before going to other types of clay. I usually add a touch of Winton water based oil paints to color the clay, then after the assembly, go back and retouch or add more color to the flower.
My best experience is to use half a tub of Craft Porcelain and half a package of DECO Clay (you can purchase same online at Decoclay.com (The store is in Hawaii). The two mixed together is 50% cheaper than Luna and Thai Clay and the end result is that the flowers look as real as if they were still growing.
If I were going to begin using air dry clays, however, I'd use Cold Porcelain made at home because the price is pennies compared to the high price of other clays.
I have recently joined a pottery class and have actually made flowers from porcelain clay. You really have to work fast however because the porcelain has a tendency to dry quickly. Of course, it makes glazing much harder than working with Cold Porcelain, Paperclay or other air dry clays.
Hope this is useful to you all!