Crane Bead Tutorial

The following tutorial provides step-by-step instructions for layering MakeScreensTM silkscreens while constructing a lentil bead.

Experiment and enjoy!

  1. The image is printed onto overhead transparency with an ink jet printer.
  2. In the developed screen the black silhouette of the crane translates into open mesh when the screen is developed. When the transparent film printed with a black image is placed over the PhotoEZ and exposed to the sun, the sun toughens the emulsion on the screen under the transparent areas, the emulsion under the black areas remains soft and washes away to reveal open screen.
  3. The unbaked Polymer clay is covered with a coat of dark gold paint and printed with acrylic paint. Note, the crane and the waves have been printed with a light gold paint.
  4. The crane is printed in detail, but this time the background is left blank.
  5. When the screen was developed, the emulsion under the black areas washed away, allowing paint to go through the open mesh.
  6. Black paint is used for second printing. Note that the detail is filled in by the second screen that was carefully placed over the silhouette. When several layers of color are used to build up an image, the screens must be precisely aligned or registered.
  7. The unbaked clay is cut with a circle cutter about 2-1/4" to 2-1/2" in diameter.
  8. A round light bulb about 3 1/8” in diameter is used as a mold. The circle of clay is gently pressed onto the bulb and baked at 270 degrees Fahrenheit for half an hour.
  9. The clay is allowed to cool on the light bulb. When the clay is removed, it retains the rounded shape of the light bulb.
  10. The second half of the bead is made and the edges on both halves are sanded with coarse wet and dry sandpaper, 220 grit. When the edges are sanded flat enough for the halves to fit together perfectly, they are ready to be joined.
  11. Either a two-part Epoxy or a slow-drying cyanoacrylic glue like the “Slo Gap” pictured here will work. Coat one edge and press the two halves together before the glue dries. Hold them for a minute or two until the glue is set.
  12. Holes are drilled at about 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock for a hanger like the saber clasped cable pictured here.
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