Friday, January 13, 2012

Chicken Little or Henny Penny

The other day Meredith of Whynot Pottery posted some chickens she made. Her chickens were so endearing I thought I would try making a chicken myself. I made this chicken sculpture today with an unconventional sculpture technique. The sculpture is 9 x 8 x 3 inches.

I cut out two chickens, a front and a back, from slabs of clay and put the two together, then puffed out the form. Then I slathered on a thick white slip every which way and let that dry a bit. Next I layered all different colors of slips, stains, and underglazes. It was great fun slathering on the slip thickly and adding all the different colors. While I was making the chicken I really wanted to push and dig my fingers into the clay. I may try another one with rough making marks left showing in the clay.

The chicken sculpture is open at the bottom of the base; do you think I need a hole at the top somewhere for air to escape while firing? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. After I made her I remembered the story of Chicken Little or Henny Penny. I remembered reciting the phrase, 'the sky is falling', when I was a kid. Maybe I'll make another chicken sculpture and make the beak open slightly and after firing I could glue a penny in her mouth

When Gary got home we went on an errand. I try to bring my camera wherever I go and sometimes it really pays off. We saw some pigs in a pasture and I begged Gary to stop. I got out to take a photo and called the pigs closer. They ran up to the fence to greet me, snorting all the way there.The second I saw these pigs I thought of the commercial with Maxwell the pig. The pig seems so happy. I know it's silly, but I love this happy zip line pig, he always makes me smile.

I think this brown pig was the big mama of the group.

When I got home the light wasn't right for photos of my recent fired work so please come back tomorrow for those. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.


  1. cute Linda- are you going to make some pigs!. There are lots of folks here who make animals- such fun!

  2. Your chicken reminds me of Easter candy. I just want to unwrap her and get to the chocolate.
    If you can find an inconspicuous place to drill a hole I would do it but I don't know that it's imperative, just be certain she's completely dry inside & out before she's fired.

  3. Neat chicken! I really like that bird's head pendant in your last post too.

  4. Very cute! Does the hole at the base let air escape from everywhere inside the chicken? If air is trapped in the head, definitely a hole, but if air can get out of the entire body through the base, you should be fine. It only takes a tiny hole, I use a needle and that size hole works. I love that pig commercial, weeeeee :)

  5. I like that chicken, it has a nice textural look to it!

  6. Your hens remind me of the paper mache' Easter chickens from my childhood. The Whee-whee pig from the commercial drives me nuts! I hope they don't use that one too long.

  7. In Arkansas that is referred to as
    calling the Hogs. Go Razorbacks.

  8. Hi Meredith, thanks, you know I am thinking about when pigs fly, literally, stay tuned.

    Hi Lori, thanks, I may drill a small hole in the end of the beak just to be safe. Easter candy, this chicken could hide some inside. Ha.

    Hi Melissa, thanks so much, I need to make more of those bird pendants in various colors.

    Hi Tracey, thanks, yes the hole at the base is open, but I always wonder if hot air rises in pottery. I once had a black piece crack at the top from escaping impurities I think.

    Hi Lori, thanks, I hope the textures continue to show up after firing. I've been thinking of some really rough textures for a chicken.

    Hi Ms. Sparrow, thanks, a paper maiche Easter chicken, hum I'll have to see if I can find a photo of one, sounds interesting. I can see where the weeeee could get on one's nerves.

    Hi Patti, thanks, yes calling the hogs, I remember the razorbacks from when living there.

  9. Hi Linda as you might remember from my blog, I rather like pigs. I don't think that brown one is related, looks like a different breed to the others, can just see her as a woodfired sculpture though. Chickens seem to be a popular collectors item so you could be on to something there ;^)

  10. Hi Anna, thanks, oh that's right I remember your pig sculptures. what a great idea for a wood fired, I have no wood fire, but I might do a pit fire with a pig. I have in my mind a pig with wings - when pigs fly, but we shall see if I get to it. Well I hope my chicken does well in the firing; she's drying nicely.


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