Topic 3 : Mighty Mica
The name for the mineral mica is understood to be derived from the Latin word micare, referring to its glittering appearance. Mica is among the minerals that tend to retain a sheen and glimmer in direct light. Most of us will use products with mica in, even when we're not crafting. Whether you're brushing your teeth, putting make-up on (for those that do), using when potting plants or even using electrical products (as it's sometimes used as an insulator within the electrical part), mica is everywhere!. For artists, mica is a product that's been around for a very long time; someone commented it was what was used before we had plastic glitter. It's probably a much better product for the environment too. For creating we really are spoiled for choice- this mighty mineral brings a shimmer and lustre and is the basis for many powders, sprays, flakes and even sheets. There are products ranging from more natural sheets going up to full on shimmer and being heat resistant, it makes them a great base for stamping and embossing on too.
To begin our mica meanderings, I've found a PaperArtsy post I'd not seen before, and it perfectly encapsulates how beautiful mica products can be. Lin Brown has used Mica powders directly onto polymer clay stamped with her own images and it simply shines!
Something a little more recent was Anneke de Clerke's post creating some modern cards and these trees show how mica layers and reflects light so beautifully.
PaperArtsy actually have a few products containing mica (just FYI)...in case you wanted to add a little more lustre over your projects. Metallic has chunky mica particles, The Pearl Glaze is a finer particle with a pearlescent vibe, and white fire in addition to the metallic colour also has some sparkle added too.
This first project is showing the subtler side of mica. It's got it all going on; fibre paste, glass bead gel, mica flakes and mica powder! It gives an awesome effect and you can see the sheen without it being too sparkly. Definitely subdued sparkle!
Following on from Lin's polymer clay project as the beginning, I thought I'd add these as well, as they are such wonderful fiery colours and show the amazing lustre so redolent of mica. The twist is that these wonderful jewellery pieces have alcohol ink painted over them which gives a stunning effect.
The reflective properties are really evident in this vintage-y piece. It's seems to have a sophistication all of its own with the larger flakes drawing in the eye.
If you're wanting to pick out texture, mica powder is good for the job. There are lots of mica products in powdered form. Some have built in resins that don't need setting or a protective layer adding; well worth checking out before you use the particular product.
This next project is incredible! Apparently there's some mica in there... hopefully there is, but if the commentator isn't right, who cares, it's just amazing to look at!
We mentioned mica flakes at the beginning- these are lovely mica sheets that you can trap other items in between. Aren't these tags beautiful?!
Mica powders can look incredible on darker bases. These bold colours really pop against the black base.
With the ever popular paint pour, the resin pours make great use of mica, but mica can also be a wonderful paint. The artist had a happy accident where some of the mica ended up in her varnish and it looked so good, she treated the entire piece the same way.
This art journalling project uses mica. Such a warmth and shine and depth to the piece.
The marvellous properties of mica make it an ideal candidate for covering lots of surfaces. Metal is a good example and this gorgeous page shows it off wonderfully.
We've been pretty pared back and subdued, so it only seemed right to add a 'plenty of sparkle piece' in!
Mighty Mica can lift so many projects. This napkin decoupage piece has lovely mica details and makes a unique piece.
I hope you have enjoyed this glimmer filled look at mica. If you dig through your supplies, you may well find powders, flakes and sprays. Have an 'experimenting evening', and remember why you love creating so much!