Bakeable clays, such as polymer clay, are often the best clay for sculpting at home without a kiln. Sculpey is a soft clay to work with that bakes tough and waterproof. This little shark is adorable and ready to take a bite out of any ship coming his way. This fun, simple, and easy DIY is a great place to start and experiment with different techniques and tools for polymer clay, as his environment is full of funky little reef pieces in all colors of the rainbow.
You will need
Making a Clean Workspace
Always start out by ensuring your workspace is clean and free of any dirt, and the surface you are working on is washable. Work either on a metal cookie sheet or on plastic.
Laying out the Bakeable Clay for the Baby Shark
Start by getting light blue and dark blue in equal parts. Knead the clay and roll the clay into two separate balls side by side.
Rolling them Together
Using a fancy acrylic rolling pin, roll the two balls of clay together. Fold the clay in half and roll again, folding the colors on top of themselves instead of folding it in half with the light blue on top of dark blue.
Once you realize you don’t know how to blend colors, give up and look at what you have created and wonder what to do with this mess.
Making the Basic Shape of the Baby Shark
After some serious thinking, roll the bakeable clay up and shape it in a shark like shape as shown above.
Sculpting the Head
For the nose of the shark I shaped it a little like a torpedo, or one of those dive toys that go through the water fast. I adjusted the nose of the Sculpey shark to point more up like a real shark.
Making the Tail Fin
For the tail fin I took some more polymer clay and rolled small pieces of light blue and silver into a scrap of dark blue, shaping the fin to be more like a shark fin instead of a blob.
Happy Baby Shark
Teeth are difficult to sculpt so small, so I took an Exacto and cut the shape of a shark mouth on the shark. I basically cut all the way through and kinda stuck it back in place. Add little triangular fins and add the tail fin using a bit of wire.
Making the Base
For the base, use a wad of tin foil and cover it in a thinly rolled out sheet of sand colored clay. Add variations with orange and dark green. Pat the sand with a toothbrush to give it the texture of real sand.
How to Make a Polymer Clay Pickle
Take another wad of tin foil and shape it into a sort of poo like shape. Cover it in green clay and smooth down the seams. The lumpiness of the foil underneath is fine, smooth the fingerprints out and set it aside.
Putting Pieces Together
Next to attach the pickle to the base sand, use some left over sand colored clay to wrap around the base of the pickle and blend into the base. Retexture as needed.
No coral reef is complete without those weird little tube coral things. Use purple clay and roll three balls out. Use a dotting tool to put a hole in the middle in all three and stick them together in one area on the side of the pickle.
Sculpting the Clam from Bakeable Clay
Roll out an orange piece of clay into a rounded off rectangle. Fold it in half, attach it to the bottom of the reef pickle and curve it around a dotting tool. Add lines and attach a pearl inside the mouth of the clam.
Retexure as needed and lightly add texture to the little coral pieces. Add more pieces to preference.
Coral has all sorts of cool types, Do some research on google and find some you like, and try to recreate them using polymer clay.
Gold powder makes everything better. Use a makeup brush to dust on some gold Pearlex powder all over the shark and base.
For the eel, mix white and black clay and roll it out. It should be about five inches long and fairly thin.
Why the Eel is Important
Use a wire to support the tilted pickle reef and use the eel to cover the wire and twist around the coral for added stability.
Add texture and Pearlex powders all over the figure for added beauty. Eye shadow works well too and is safe to bake.
Baking the Bakeable Clay
After adding the shark to the top with wire, pop the whole thing into the oven at 275 for about 20 minutes. Do not overbake.
And your shark is done. I hope some of you tried this tutorial, and Happy Crafting!