Saturday 29 September 2012

Zen-Doodles Group Project

I had never heard of zentangles until me it was doodling! (and doodling it will remain!) But it turned out to be a great project to do in between bigger and messier projects.

Each student got a 'quarter' to complete and then we created a display of circles. A great way to do a group project where each student still gets to take their own work home.

After some feedback (thanks Phyl), Ive decided to call these zen-doodles!

Saturday 22 September 2012

Clay creatures....inspired by Shaun Tan

Shaun Tan (along with Maurice Sendak) is one of my favourite illustrators/artists. After failing miserably to make a three footed mug, I was reminded of one of his strange creatures from his book 'The Lost Thing'.............and this is what it ended up like...

Merlyn's Clay Workshop

I was lucky enough to attend a clay workshop for teachers run by fabulous instructors, Merlyn and Fran. These were some of the results (fallen angel by myself and tree by my fellow teacher, Sandy)

Clay Tiles

I love how versatile these are! You could glaze them and add holes to hang them, use them as clay coasters or as texture rubbing plates. The impressions were made using some beautiful vintage batik stamps that one of the workshop participants brought in. I want some!

Clay Owls

And onwards with this year's owl obsession.....
I made this at today's professional development clay workshop (aka cheap therapy!)
The plan is to try it out with some of my older students and see how they go!


Tuesday 11 September 2012

Applying transfers to Clay

A few things to know before you start...
- apply transfers only to bisque fired clay (not raw clay or glazed clay)
- use a sponge to wet the clay slightly first
- apply the transfer with the pattern side face down
- dab gently over with a damp sponge (do NOT rub)
- carefully peel off the backing paper
- usually it is easier to use small pieces of transfer paper to cover an area rather than one large piece

***Thanks to Ann Murray for all of her fabulous advice!***

Clay Knee Masks

I thought these would be a great way to introduce hand building clay. It's basically the same start as a pinch pot except that you use your knee to mold the clay over.

Then you can build up the features of the face....

and then add the details...

Layered Clay Projects

I had never done this before, but I will definitely try it out with my students now. The layers are made from adding one rolled out 'slice' of white clay and one of terracotta clay together. You then cut the clay through the middle and add the two halves together (you can repeat this process a few more times until you are happy with the amount of layers it has). Then leave your clay to dry for a little while (we left ours for around half an hour or so).

You then use a craft knife to slice thin layers of your clay.

These layers can be added to a huge range of different projects. They can be laid over a separate piece of clay and then be pressed into it using a rolling pin.
These are just a few ideas that we came up with...

Note: We used the same method for creating and drying our bowls as in the previous workshop and I have posted the photos for this process under the post titled "Clay Bowls'

This was my favourite! We rolled out clay - added long strips of layered clay over the top and then rolled them together with the rolling pin. This was then cut into a rectangle, wrapped around a cardboard tube and joined together (also a circular based was added to the bottom). The layered clay created a tree bark effect, so I added a face and ended up with my new tree-man pencil holder!

 Note: cover cardboard tube with newspaper and don't let it dry for too long or it will be difficult to remove the tube without damaging the clay.

This was a handy way of suspending a curved piece of clay that could then be made into a sushi plate.

and.....a great way to use up any leftover layered clay!