Julie is a teacher down the hall from me. From time to time she and other teachers offer workshops to other teachers after school. Over the past couple of days, she has showed ten colleagues from the science, special education, history, administration and art how to work with PMC, Precious Metal Clay.
Julie talked a bit about the fun of working with PMC as the workshop wound down.
PMC is a quick way to express yourself in metal. You can do everything with it, people are amazed at how easy it is and how quickly they can make something really beautiful. It’s not intimidating. I think anyone can do it. You can teach a nine year old how to work creatively with it.
Together they made a whole mess of neat designs with the clay. Some people used molds that Julie made from shells, rocks, coins, buttons and lots of other cool found objects. Some made their own designs by rolling out the PMC and removing or adding material. When the clay dries to its green state, then gets touched up to remove any imperfections and strengthen the shape.
Once they are pretty much dried, they are then fired them in the kiln at high temperature between 1110 – 1830 degrees, depending and a hold time from 10 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the type of metals. When they come out, they look pretty much the same as when they went in, but after they are burnished and sanded, they come out to be a nice silver object.
There are a lot of places to get PMC, mostly from catalogs or online. Julie really speaks highly about her interactions with Whole Lotta Whimsy.
Have you used PMC? Do you have any experiences in teaching creative techniques to people? Post your thoughts in the comments!