Do Your Cane Designs Get Lost or Blurred When they are Reduced?
Polymer clay color theory has many facets that are fun to learn about. For example, even though several colors may look good together in a large palette, that does not necessarily mean those colors will work in every one of your cane designs. That’s because of what can happen to certain colors or shades when the cane is reduced.
Cindy I do have a problem with picking colors that look good together. I like earthtones and they do not reduce well, and tend to get lost in my designs when reduced. I have been working with polymer clay for quite some years now. Thanks for your help from all of us clayers. ~Lynn
Thanks Lynn for your comment. Here are 3 tips to keep in mind when it comes to color theory and polymer clay canes:
1) Polymer clay colors get more concentrated and darker as they are reduced down. That means you may have to lighten the color a bit if you are making a large cane that will end up getting reduced to a very small size. Try adding white and translucent to some of your deep colors like reds and blues if you don’t want them to look burgundy and navy when they get shrunk down or compressed inside of your cane.
2) Because colors appear darker and more muted as they get smaller in the cane, try using neon type colors when you want strong punches of colors. Colors like florescent yellow or hot pink that would seem too garish when in a larger cane, will become a surprisingly nice tone when reduced.
3) If you find that your colors all seem to blend into each other when they are reduced; and that the detail in your cane design seems to get lost or blurred; try adding thin sheets of black, brown, gray, or white around each color to add definition, separation and contrast.
By the way if you did not already know, my video tutorials in the members library are full of tips like the three I just shared above. These video tips will help you to avoid making mistakes that can often cause frustrations when learning about polymer clay canes. Here are links to a couple of preview clips for the latest cane making videos just posted this month in the library: