Sunday, August 28, 2011

and now for something completely different....

The crane truck needed some work - actually a lot of work. It is parked right next to Daphne, so I thought I'd work on a water clay piece in the meantime. It's been years since I've worked in water clay; it will be fun to try it again.

This is the maquette that I will be basing the sculpture on. I did this years ago and set it aside. It has issues - such as the head is too big - which I will work out in the water clay.

Water clay is worked without internal armatures, so various props are used to keep the clay from slumping. I use clay supports from fairly stiff clay under the arms to hold them in position. I am also using skewers through the leg and both arms. This is a technique I saw Beth Stichter use when she demonstrated her technique at U of L.

I am using the tip of a skewer to draw on musculature, which I will then carve back.

Fairly soon into making the piece, I hollow it. I do this when I have the piece basically roughed out and will be making no major changes in movement, but before I do final detail. I slice the section off with a wire cutoff tool. I will hollow out the entire piece all the way to the bottom, making the clay about 3/8" thick. The piece will be fired in the kiln and, if it is not hollowed, air pockets deep within the clay will cause the piece to explode.

I remove clay with a loop tool.

I score the clay. I also hollow and score the edge of the piece that I cut off.

I stuff the interior with moist paper towels. I will then apply slip to this scored surface, as well as to the section I cut off, and carefully reattach the section using bits of clay to smooth the joined area.

The piece is almost finished, still needing some definition.

This is the back view. You can see how I pulled the leg over for added movement. That's Don's Tree of Life Commission in the background. That commission will be going into Cave Hill Cemetery. Can't wait to see it finished and installed.

I took this pic when we were out on the river. I'm not sure what the little red things are - tiny ladybugs? The flowers are very small, maybe 1/2" across. I didn't even see these bugs until I had the photo on the computer and enlarged it.

This is a spider's shed exoskeleton floating on water.

Don and I went out exploring with his friend Eddie and his girlfriend Loretta. Here they go out across a log...

I found a culvert and crawled inside to see if I could get an interesting photo....

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