A2 Bicone Bead with Texture

Bicone bead by Julia Rai

Submitted to the Registry evaluators - February 2009

This textured bicone bead was a headache! I made a couple as practice and this helped to iron out the problems. I used a paper template to get the shape and it was dried over a solid polymer clay bicone bead I made. Getting both sides of the bead equal was tricky and I used a compass to make sure each side was the same before sticking them together. This required quite a bit of filing.

Some of my earlier attempts got filed too small and had to be rejected. The bead had to be at least an inch in diameter. This means you have to factor in shrinkage as well so my final bead was made quite a bit bigger than required. This meant I had lots of room for filing to get the bead right.

I thought about the texture quite a bit and practiced a few different ways before deciding to use the thick slip and cocktail stick pattern which is one of my favourites. I made one bead with overlay shapes cut from PMC paper but decided against using that.

I got pretty good scores.

Originality of texture – 3 out of 3.5
Craftsmanship – 1.5 out of 2
Symmetry – 2 out of 2
Finish – 2 out of 2.5

I was pleased with 8.5 but the comments were a bit disappointing. “I think the bead would benefit from a collar or similar detail at the openings.” This is fair comment. “Could be a brighter shine, though the patina is appropriate.”

I’m quite fond of this bead. It’s 3cms tall and 3cms across so it has a nice weight.

Here is the project description from the Masters Registry website:-

A2 Bicone Bead with Texture

Make a hollow bead from two cones, ornamented with a non-commercial texture (i.e. no ready-made texture sheets). The bead should be at least an inch in diameter, but larger is OK. The purpose of this project is to focus on innovative use of texture and ways to develop hollow forms in metal clay. Craftsmanship is important, as is the choice of a finish that shows the texture dramatically.

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