Bronze clay and elusive color

Another batch of Bronze clay, into the kiln. Before and After. A few of the pieces had copper inlay, but otherwise it was all bronze.

Before:

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After:

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It was interesting that the color changed depending on where the pieces were placed in the charcoal to be fired. The pieces with more purple/blue/green were in the first layer of activated charcoal. The pieces that are more yellow/gold were in the top layer of the charcoal. I don’t understand what causes one color or the other, but the golden color was consistent with the top layer, so it might have been exposed to a higher temperature.

I tried applying Butcher’s wax to one of the long “stone” pieces, to see what it would do. The color became a little muted and the piece kept picking up fuzz from my towel because the surface of the bead was rough.

I decided to brass brush the beads and go from there. But where had I put my brush? In looking in my usual spot, I couldn’t find it, but I pulled out a steel brush that I had never used. Worth a try. But then I HAD to find my brass brush to see if there was any difference in how the bronze looked depending on which brush was used. I located the brass brush, and here are the comparisons:

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The steel brush was used on the pieces on the left, while the brass brush was used on the pieces on the right. I liked both of the finishes and was glad to see that there was a difference. I soldered posts on the square pieces at the bottom of the group and then used the buffer to get a brighter finish. I then used the Baldwin’s patina and I am really happy with how they turned out. ( The fluorescent light in my kitchen doesn’t give the photo quality I like, but it was night time and I had just finished the earrings below.)

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