Clay Types for Beginner Artists

Individuals who love experimenting and looking for a new arts and crafts project and experimenting with clay modeling and clay art will find this guide useful. Learn where to use it and which clay materials are which. Sculpture artists use many different Clay types, but beginners could use any one of the basic four mentioned here.

Polymer clay – as you will derive from the name is this a synthetic PVC instead of an actual clay. It is very versatile and you can buy it in many hardening values and colors too. When you buy it it will come in a mold and no additives will have to be added. After you designed your art piece you will have to harden it in an oven. This polymer clay is popular among sculptors and artists alike and when you buy a commercial clay product you might find it is made of polymer too.

Sculpt dry clay – here as the name suggest is this clay in a different form, powder that needs water before use. You have to be careful adding water as your clay will be slurry and impossible to use when you have added too much water. You could savage it though as it will dry when you leave it a couple of hours and it will be ready to handle. You will find it in three main colors, peach/skin color, terracotta and white.

Paper clay – this is derived again from the fact that it is a combination of hardening materials, water and finely processed paper, hence the name. Crafters of all niches use paper clay especially when you are a skilled ceramic artist. It hardens when it has air contact and once your project is formed you will not need hardening methods or heating. It is easy to work with and very versatile too.

Oil based clay – this remains soft when stored in a tight container and is very elastic, light weight and reusable. Leaving it outdoors or in exposed air it will become unworkable. It is the ideal clay for kids and well as beginner artists.