After the August blue moon pulled me out of my creative funk, I started carving again. And I mean some crazy entire piece carvings. Somewhat simple designs, but just a lot of carving. I enjoy it though and it transports me back to the time when that is all I did.
The first few pieces I made were thrown in soldate and in a long bottle shape. I had some free english porcelain and wanted to create a a similar shape. Design wise, I wanted to fashion it after another design i made last year which I think turned out really beautiful but it was only one. I like the way these are turning out. I will stick with the blue color theme. There are a few blues I can use at the studio but I may try to go to aardvark in the next couple of weeks to check out the mason stains.
As of late I’ve been breaking a lot of pieces due to thinness and bone dry state. Over the weekend I finished this bowl and even though it was thin at the bottom it was fine. Silly me decided to stack other bowls on top of it while in transport. Oh and part of a banana too. When I got to the studio, the bottom was broken. Lesson learned though.
I tried to patch it up with magic water but 2 hours later the pieces were falling off. The wet patch is the broken area. I do like this design. I’ve used it on other pieces too. I think it translates really well with the bowl shape. It’s a low shallow bowl.
That same day I threw 7 more bowls of similar style. Had a pretty discouraging day from different frustrations early on, but once I took a break and returned it was easier. The one in the pic is larger than than the ones I threw, but just slightly. I do want to throw larger ones though. I plan to do variations of this design and use different engobes.
I’m getting faster in my design stages, able to knock off a nice chunk of time in the past few weeks. Also new design concepts coming to me faster. Still all a learning process but I like where things are going.
I attempted this design again. My first go around, I actually preferred the design when it had no glaze. Then I fucked the piece up with improper glazing. It was just okay, not something I really cared for. I do however think if I did a better glaze job, that is would have looked amazing. Maybe under glazes will work for this. I have ideas, I don’t know how much time or effort I really want to spend with this series.
I was able to complete the design on the piece in under 2 hours, maybe less and 1.5 hours last night. I’m not quite sure since I was multitasking last night with glazing and trimming in between design. Most of my efforts were put towards my obsession to create smooth clean edges and surface. It pretty quick to finish the piece. Jim let me stay after since I didn’t want to take the piece home. Lord knows what I might had added to it.
There is one more bottle I have that I have decided to use this same design. Maybe add more drops because it’s a bigger piece. I really do like the design, I’m just not in love with it at this moment. I don’t know if it needs something more or not. I think it’s a go to design when I don’t know what the fuck to put on a piece since it’s quick and easy. It will probably grow on me when I find the right glazing method.
copyright anna becker 2011
Just a pic of the new orbs. Thought that I threw 11 but I either miscounted or somehow lost one. Don’t know what happened but oh well. Out of the 10 only 7 made the cut. I trimmed through 2 of them and one of them wasn’t thrown well. If there is a pit fire in the future, I’ll toss those in but for now, they are in the discard pile.
I learned a lot this time around. I don’t even remember the thought process for the first one. This time around I was able to achieve more texture, however at times I feel some things are being forced. When I get to that point I just move on to another one. Besides having more texture, some have very different edges. I burnished the piece when I trimmed however when I am carving I am finding that I am getting a very rough look. I think the black mountain clay has a finer grit. I don’t remember. I will have go back and burnish again. Oh well.
I’ll be done with these little guys tomorrow. I would like to make a 9 piece series so I can sell them in individually or in sets of 3. The next two I throw will be a bit larger.
I haven’t posted images of work in awhile. This piece was finished the Sunday before last. Will be able to put in the Raku firing next week and add to my Dino Egg series. The design at the top is a little smaller than I wanted but it seems to still work :-).
This shape is one of my favorite shapes to throw and it’s sometimes the hardest.
Took a few hours to get this design carved out. Used this texture technique on other pieces in the past. One of my favorite and a signature element for my pieces. Not sure what glaze I will use. I may included several color pallets for this series. Goal is to make 15 pieces using this design in some variation but will most likely 7-9. I don’t know. We will see how fast I work.
Carving took 9 hours. I also had to ad an additional hour worth of work because I accidentally hit a top portion. Part of the top broke but fortunately I was able to fix it. When Signing the bottom, I was scared I was going to break it again. Good thing nothing has happened.
Last Saturday I finally glazed it with the spray gun using Coleman Celedon glaze. Harry advised that I put another coat as he thought it was too thin. I let him know that I liked the yellowish Celedon color. Don’t get me wrong, I love the jade green it’s normally suppose to be, but if I can get it more towards the yellow, I would be very happy. This piece is the 3rd piece of this design but I embellished more on this one. I would like to do more of these even though it’s time consuming.