February 20, 2017
Double Helix Arke is a bit of a funny one. It's transparent, and sort of a medium level of darkness/saturation, so it doesn't really hold its own with other colours the way Triton and Psyche do. However, do not be deceived by the fugliness of my test beads. Arke is a seriously beautiful colour when you use it right.
Arke is also very reactive and a bit sensitive to over-reduction, so it's important to go slowly when you reduce Arke so that you don't discolour it. It's always a good idea when you reduce the reduction colours to do it a little bit at a time. When you encase reduced Arke, it has a mother-of-pearl shininess under the clear layer that is easy to achieve and easy to keep.
Arke, reduced on its own, can yield a beautiful rainbow of colours with repeated and targeted reduction.
On the left here, you can see a plain, self-coloured Arke spacer that shows the medium dark blue hue of unreduced Arke. On the right, a lightly reduced self-coloured Arke spacer that shows some surface lustre.
This bead is a core of Arke, reduced, and then encased with clear. I've encased Arke before without so much yellow, and I think that the reason I got so much yellow here is because the Arke was over-reduced.
These beads were made with an Arke core, encased with four different clears. I did not over-reduce these beads, and you can see that the clear you use to encase Arke can really change how it looks after encasing. The clears I used here are Effetre Super Clear (006), Reichenbach Crystal, CiM Experimental, and Double Helix Zephyr.
These beads, unattractive though they may be, showcase how very reactive Arke is. I did not reduce these beads, so any surface sheen is due either to reactions or to the colours behaviour in a neutral flame. It is sort of interesting that you can see the strange surface sheen with Tuxedo, Copper Green, and Ivory but not with either Peace or Opal Yellow.
It was surprising to me that you can see Arke on top of and underneath Tuxedo. Usually when I test a transparent colour (silver glass or no) I do not expect to see much action with Tuxedo because I'm not reducing it. For example, if you look back at the test beads that I made for Precision 104 Black Pearl, you can see that colour is completely invisible with Tuxedo. In these beads, Arke has developed a sort of ghostly sheen wherever it meets Tuxedo.
Arke on top of Copper Green develops an interesting shiny halo inside the Arke stringerwork. Copper Green turns an odd, splotchy pinkish brown colour underneath Arke. When Copper Green is used on top of Arke, it separates. Copper Green often does this on top of other colours, but what is unique about the reaction with Arke is that the exterior of the Copper Green stringerwork turned brownish in the rightmost bead.
Using Arke on top of Opal Yellow fumed the Opal Yellow a deeper yellow in places. When I used Opal Yellow on top of Arke, the Opal Yellow developed a darker yellowish brown outline.
Arke on top of Ivory is pretty awesome. It separates so that the middle of dots and stringer lines have a bluer appearance than the edges, and it develops a strong dark line reaction with Ivory that really makes it pop. You can see that where I used Arke on top of Ivory, it has also made the Ivory curdle a little bit underneath it. Ivory develops a strong brown outline when it is used on top of Arke as well as an outer, lighter edge to that line which gives it some pretty neat definition.
Arke on top of Peace looks more like bluish brown glass with a brown outline than blue glass on top of white. Where Peace is used on top of Arke, it separates, developing a strong brown outline.
Here are some beads made with Arke.
February 13, 2017
Effetre Dark Brown is a very dark, reddish brown opaque colour.
Reducing Dark Brown does not appear to have any effect on its colour. It doesn't noticeably strike or reduce, and its colour is very smooth and even.
On top of Dark Brown, silver crusts up. When the silver is reduced and encased, it turns blue. It also seems to dissipate a bit with the heat of encasing, because as you can see, a lot of the blueness in the rightmost bead is blue without the benefit of any crusty silver underneath it.
Dark Brown is an indifferent base for silver glass.
And Dark Brown doesn't really do anything with other colours. There is a tiny amount of separation in my Copper Green stringer dots and lines on top of Dark Brown, and Dark Brown thins out pretty singificantly over Peace so that it looks almost translucent, but that's about it.
I haven't done much with Dark Brown, but I did make these beads.
February 7, 2017
CiM Algae is a yellowish/greyish dark green transparent. I think that this colour fills an important void in my 104 colour palette, and so I'm a bit sad that it's a limited run and only sporadically available.
There are only so many dark transparent greens in our colour palette. To name a few, we have Effetre Sage Green, Effetre Dark Emerald, Effetre Dark Grass Green, CiM Slytherin, and REI Beryl Green, and none of them are in this exact yellow-green space. Slytherin and Sage Green are the only other green transparent glasses that approach Algae in terms of saturation level, but Algae is darker and richer than both of those other colours. Algae is the only colour in this group that has adverse reactions with Ivory, which mean that it also has a very unique reaction profile compared to other transparent dark greens.
Here, you can see how very saturated this colour is. You can't see through the self-coloured spacers. As you can see in the rightmost bead, reducing Algae does not have any effect on the colour.
Silver on top of Algae develops some blue colour, and the crust that it forms is fairly even and uniform in texture. When the silver is reduced and encased, it turns yellow and all of the interesting patterning is lost out of it.
On top of Algae, I had interesting results with silver glass. The reduction frit bloomed nicely on top of the Algae and has cool borders to all of the fritty bits. I got a reasonable first blush of colour in the striking silver glass, too, although it's hard to see in the picture.
Copper Green, Opal Yellow, and Peace all separate on top of Algae, whereas Ivory curdles a little and develops a dark reaction line.
When Algae is used on top of Copper Green, the Copper Green separates even more dramatically and pops up around the Algae dots and lines in light halos with dark turquoise veining in between. On top of Opal Yellow and Peace, Algae separates so that it has a thin, dark line down the middle of its dots and stringer lines. I can't remember the last transparent colour I tested that did this - usually it is opaque colours that I see this in.
On top of Ivory, Algae looks an ochre-y, brownish green version of itself.
Here are some beads made with Algae.