Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Layers and a Visitor

Years ago I'd make a bowl like this and be happy I could make it. A year or so later I started putting a texture in my bowls. Then a year after that I started using slip designs, sometimes using slip by itself and other times on top of a texture. For non clay folks this bowl is slumped; the clay slab is slumped in a form.

This time I've added another layer. I painted pine needles in blue slip over the top of it all. They were going to be blue feathers, but they aren't quite feather looking, they're more like pine needles. Just another element to my clay design. Using the brush I got from Brandon helped me paint the thin lines for the pine needles.

I felt like I think a water color painter would feel letting the thinned out blue slip barely touch the clay to make the needles. It was so satisfying to be able to paint those thin lines. I've always wanted to paint with water colors and have never tried it. Maybe this type of painting on clay will satisfy that urge. I'm sure I'll be trying more painterly slip designs in the future.

I might start making templates for my bowls and plates, this one is half way between symmetrical and free form, I've got to figure out which I prefer. I think I'll make a few tiles and try that brush work some more.

I ended up making this swirling leaf plate instead of tiles. I'd like to improve the line quality on the leaves, but I like the background which is supposed to make it feel like the leaves are swirling in the autumn air. I didn't have the heart to cut this up. But I'm wondering if I make a tile mural, should I cut the tiles first and then paint the design, or paint the design and then cut the tiles?

While I was painting the leaves, something flew in for a landing. Is it a mosquito or a crane fly? I tried to shew him away, but he really liked the slip work. First he tried green then the chartreuse. Ha! It holds it's legs and body like a crane fly, but the mouth part looks like a mosquito, and the body looks like a crane fly, but the wings look like a mosquito. I was going to put him outside afterwards, but I don't know where he went. Probably waiting to bite me in the middle of the night. I didn't think mosquitoes would be attracted to clay. It was about 1.25 inches. Maybe it was a male mosquito, apparently they sip nectar and perhaps it thought the clay was sweet.

We're leaving this morning for North Carolina. Maybe I can take just 12 pounds of clay in the motorhome to make some pinch bowls, think Gary will notice? Please keep your fingers crossed that the motorhome makes it OK on this trip. We plan on selling it when we return to recoup our money. Comments are welcome.


  1. First of all...Have a wonderful time in NC, Linda..very exciting.
    Re the tiles. I think decorating and then cutting because I like the design to look like it continues over the rim..especially if you are doing a swirling leaves image...
    and thirdly, If you have mosquitoes that are 1.25" are in big trouble! hahah..Years ago we lived in the Yukon for a summer and a friend gave us tennis racquets to wack the those where not that big..
    Have a great trek..T.

  2. Lucky Ducky! Glad you found a motorhome -I must have missed that post. Your bowls look FAB! I'm loving your texture work. Give hugs for me on opening night at the show -so sorry I can't be there but happier that you get to be!!

  3. Hi Linda! I am dusting just for you! Ha!
    and if that is a mosquito- leave him at home.

  4. Cut first.If you screw up it's just clay.You can still just leave the tiles in place if you want continuous decoration.If you decorate first you have more to lose.

  5. Hi Trish, thanks, that insect must be something besides a mosquito, Gary said it's too big tto be a mosquito, we plan on having a good time and relaxing and seeing the sights like tourists I hope.

    Hi Cindy, thanks, wish we could do a video cam or sometbhing for the show. I wish everyone could be there even those not in the show. Bloggers are the best.

    Hi Meredith, thanks, I have captured him and put him in a jar for you. He is pregnant with joy. ha ha.

    Hi Dennis, thanks, well good cut first, since I didn't but it's a platter.


I love suggestions, questions, critiques, thanks for your comment