I make dragon eyes from polymer clay, and hang them on thick antique-bronze chains to either wear as pendants, or hang as decorations.
I’ve been working with clay for about a year, so it’s a recent passion. I’ve always loved fantasy mythology, and being Welsh have a particular fondness for dragons – it seemed logical to apply those loves to my work with clay!
I start with a “millefiori” clay cane slice for the iris, and set it behind a glass bead. From that, I build up shapes around the central bead to form the dragon’s eye: swirls, scales, spikes, horns – all kinds of shapes. When the basic eye is complete, I bake it to set the clay.
The next part is adding the colors and decorations. I start with watery acrylics and layer on a few different colors. When that’s dry, I brush on metallic pigment powders in a few different colors around the eye, and then apply several coats of glaze on top, starting with colored opalescent, iridescent glazes and finishing with a couple of coats of plain, clear glaze. When the glaze is dry, I superglue tiny metallic beads into the indentations I’ve made in the clay, to add a finishing intricacy to the eyes.
The base clay shape of Sirona before painting.
I attach a metal wire bail to the clay pre-baking (and then glue it in post-baking to make sure it sticks) so the dragons are ready to hang on chains when they’re finished. I give them all names, choosing from the names of deities from various pantheons.
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