In the world of clay art, the materials you use and the tools you have at your disposal can make all the difference. Whether you're a seasoned clay artist or just starting out, it's important to get to know your materials and tools to make the most of your creations.
Clay materials come in many different forms, from air-dry clay to polymer clay, each with its own unique properties and uses. It's important to understand the characteristics of each type of clay to choose the right one for your project. Similarly, using the right tools can make all the difference in shaping and molding your clay creations. From sculpting tools to rolling pins, each tool serves a specific purpose and can help you achieve the desired effect.
In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at the different types of clay materials and tools available, and how to choose the right ones for your project. We'll also provide tips on how to properly care for your materials and tools to ensure they last as long as possible.
Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned clay artist, getting to know your clay materials and tools is an essential step in creating beautiful and unique clay creations. So, let's dive in and explore the wonderful world of clay!
Selection and Use of Clay
01: Resin Clay, 02: Special Silver Resin Clay, 03: XGB Clay, 04: Lok Clay, 05: Love Clay
Types & Characteristics Of Clay
Commonly used air-drying clay
The clay figurine examples in this guide are made using air dry clay. Air dry clay is highly malleable and can be easily molded into various shapes. It also dries quickly and naturally without the need for baking, making the process much simpler.
The two types of air-dry clay featured in the image, XGB and Lok Clay, are both odorless and boast a refined texture and exceptional malleability. Moreover, once dried, they exhibit neither expansion nor deformation.
I highly recommend the skin-tone air-dry clay from Loveclay and XGB, which boasts a smooth and refined surface texture after being molded and shaped. When creating figurines, using the skin-tone clay to mold the facial features and limbs is the ideal choice, as it beautifully captures the smoothness of human skin.
Special Silver Resin Clay
The gold and silver resin clays boast a metallic luster, making them the preferred choice for creating special patterns or metallic props. For instance, in the image above, the silver resin clay was used to make the collar, while the gold resin clay was used to create the magical wand components.
Crystal Material Resin Clay
The crystal material clay boasts a sense of transparency, making it the ideal choice for creating jade objects and semi-transparent objects, such as the jade flute shown in the image above or delicate, sheer garments.
Common Handicraft Tools
01: Double-sided Round Pressing Mold Tool, 02: Round Cutting Tool, 03: Indentation Cutter, 04: Carving Knife, 05: Tweezers, 06: Dotting Tools Ball, 07: Indentation Pen, 08: Opening Blade, 09: Knitting Needles, 10: Egg-shaped Assistants, 11: Pressure Plate, 12: Small Scissors, 13: Big Scissors, 14: Curved Scissors, 15: Standard Face Mold, 16: Chibi Face Mold, 17: Pinhole Pressure Round Tool, 18: Short Blades, 19: Long Blades, 20: Rolling Pin
Double-sided Round Pressing Mold Tool
It is used to cut out round and smooth circles or to cut out neat arc edges in clay; its reverse side can be used to press out wavy edges.
Round Cutting Tool
These circle cutting tools are relatively compact and can cut out semi-circles, circles, concentric circles, and neck round grooves.
The indentation knife is used to create lines and marks on clay. It can also be used to press hair and clothing patterns.
When pasting small objects or working on small corners, it can be difficult to control with your hands, so you can use tweezers for better precision. Tweezers can also be used when creating wavy edging.
Use a carving knife when cutting small objects or shaping small clay shapes.
Dotting Tool Ball & Indentation Pen
Using a dotting tool ball and an indentation pen to press a circular depression is the most efficient method and results in a smooth depression.
The side of the carving tool can be used to create indentations, while the front can be used to smooth the edges of clay.
Stainless Steel Point Tool
Stainless Steel Point tool have many uses, commonly employed to adjust clothing pleats. The two ends of tool are used for different purposes, the round end is suitable for creating wide pleats, while the pointed end is suitable for creating fine pleats.
The egg-shaped assistant can help to produce arc-shaped clay pieces, which are often used to make skirts, hats, and hairpieces.
Acrylic Backing Board Pressure Plate
The pressing plate can be used to shape long cylindrical objects and flatten thin sheets.
There are three commonly used types of scissors: small scissors for trimming details, large scissors for cutting clay, and curved scissors for trimming the curved shape of clay.
There are many types of face molds, including steamed bun face, cute anime face, and realistic human face. These molds can quickly produce standard facial shapes.
The long blade is often used to cut long or circular thin slices.
Shorter blades are easier to control and are preferred for shaping and detailing.
Pinhole Pressure Round Tool
When making small circular patterns, the cutting tools are all too big, so you should choose a needle hole pressure circle tool for production.
A powerful tool for quickly rolling clay into thin sheets. Thin sheets made with a clay rolling pin have a uniform thickness and the thickness of the sheets can be adjusted.
01: Acrylic Paint, 02: Clay Eyeshadow Makeup Palette, 03: Memo Pads, 04: Acrylic Paint Brush, 05: Eyeshadow brush, 06: Pencil and Eraser
Acrylic paint and white clay can be mixed to produce some beautiful colors, such as jade color. However, their most common use is for painting, which can be used to draw facial features and patterns.
Clay Eyeshadow Makeup Palette
Eye shadow is a material used to color the surface of clay. Its most common use is to brush on red color for skin tone, but it can also be used to create makeup looks.
Choose a memo with a thin film layer on the surface, which can be colored on and torn off after use for convenience and efficiency.
Acrylic Paint Brush
The brush is used to mix the pigments to apply color to the figurines, commonly used for drawing facial features, and secondly, for drawing some patterns on the clay.
The brush is used in the making of figurines to dip into eyeshadow and apply blush onto the character's skin, making it look rosy and fair.
Pencil and Eraser
It is often used to draw pattern lines on clay or to draw facial features on a face shape.
Fixation & Bonding Tools
01 UV lamp, 02 UV glue, 03 B-7000 Glue, 04 502 Super Glue & BYB Nail Glue, 05 School White Glue, 06 Iron Wire, 07 Copper Wire
UV lamp & UV glue
Using UV light can quickly dry and fix UV glue, which is the ideal choice for fixing floral arrangements. UV glue can also be used to create small accessories, and can be combined with accessory materials to create different styles of accessories.
BYB Nail Glue & 502 Super Glue
The primary use of 502 super glue is for parts that are difficult to fix together or for positions that require a quick bonding process. With 502 super glue, the bond can be formed within seconds.
It is mainly used for bonding small decorations and small diamonds. It is a special environmentally friendly adhesive that can be used by simply opening the cap, making it easy to operate. The bonding time is about 10-15 minutes, and the material becomes transparent after drying.
School White Glue
School White Glue is the most widely used and frequent adhesive, with high transparency and good toughness when dry, making it very suitable for bonding clay.
Fixed joint connections, such as those found in the arms and the neck, can be adjusted by fixedly securing them with wire to allow for rotation and positional adjustment.
Copper wire is slightly thinner than iron wire, and can be wrapped in thin clay sheets to make long sticks. In making handcrafts, the most common use of copper wire is to fix the legs. By inserting the copper wire through the soles of the shoes and crossing it through both legs, the legs can be fixed and kept upright.
01: Handmade Cushion Board, 02: File Folder
The Craft Mat features a non-adhesive clay surface, and its built-in ruler enables precise measurements of your handmade creations.
Plastic file bags can be used as a mat when making figurines with resin clay.
Place Drying Tools
01: Sponge & Foam, 02: Wooden Sucker Stand
Place Drying Tools
Clay placed on a foam drying rack will not be squeezed or deformed.
The clay figurines can be fixed on a pinhole wooden board for drying using copper wire.
01: Water-based Gloss Varnish, 02: Clay Smooth Water, 03: Alcohol swabs/pads
Gloss Clay Varnish
Gloss Clay Varnish is a water-based varnish that gives a beautiful, glossy finish to clay surfaces. It's perfect for enhancing the shine of leather shoes and other glossy accessories. You can also apply it to painted eyes to create a watery, transparent effect, adding a lifelike quality to your creations. So why not try Gloss Clay Varnish today and elevate your clay creations to the next level!
Clay Smooth Water
When clay blocks are joined, there may be a trace left. Brushing a layer of smoothing water over the seam line and readjusting it will remove the trace.
The seam can be wiped clean with an alcohol pad after brushing with smoothing water. If there is dirt on the surface of the clay, it can also be removed with an alcohol pad.
01: Knitting Pattern Mold, 02: Metal chips, 03: Semi-circle-shaped Pearl, 04: Crystal Diamond, 05: Caviar Beads, 06: Bubble Bead
Knitting Pattern Mold
Roll the clay into thin strips, cover it onto the mold, gently press it to easily create the woven texture.
Stick these metal flakes on belts and headpieces to adorn clothing or create headwear.
Half-circle shaped pearls can be used as decorations and stuck onto corresponding positions.
The usage of crystal diamonds and semi-circular pearls is the same, choose different decorations according to the needs of the handcraft.
Fish roe beads are much smaller than bubble beads, and are opaque. They have the same usage as bubble beads.
The material of bubble beads is semi-transparent and the particles are round, which are commonly used as accessory materials.
Dried flowers are used to make decorations for statues. Small dried flowers are usually purchased. In the case study in this guide, dried flowers were used to create a flower basket and a small red flower branch in the Chinese style.
In this chapter, we introduced some tools and materials commonly used in clay art. I'm sure you're eager to start creating your own clay art! In the next chapter, we will cover some basic knowledge and simple hands-on practices.
So, join us and let's get started!