Sunday, April 30, 2017

Yet More Leaf Imprint Vessels and More

This is a great time of year to do more leaf imprinting, as there are many fresh leaves becoming available.  My Davidii involucrata (dove or handkerchief) tree has just sprouted a fresh set of small leaves.  In a few weeks, it will be covered in larger leaves, so I took advantage of this opportunity to imprint with some of the small leaves.

First I needed to throw some pieces.  I am enjoying throwing closed shapes, to which I can add an opening anywhere, as I did on Wednesday.  For this first one, Fredi made a suggestion that I could paddle the bottom so that it was slanted.  What looked good to me was when it was reclined quite noticeably on its side :

I added an opening, which was neither on the throwing axis nor the vertical axis, so was really wonky looking, and pressed the leaves :

Then added the No. 6 soda slip, which will behave somewhat like a flashing slip in the soda firing :

Then peeled the leaves :

I am trying to think of different combinations of slips and glazes, and unglazed areas, so I can experiment and find some winning combinations.  This one is so textured I may just leave it as is, and see how the soda ash glazes the leaves, but behaves differently with the slip.  I'm hoping for some dramatic oranges between the leaves.  But we'll see.  The soda firing is very unpredictable.

Next I used some sculptural clay to throw a very fine shaped egg.  The sun and wind today was awesome, it helped to dry my pieces very quickly, so I could work on them the same day.  This one was no exception.  By the time I played with some claws, it was nearly ready to assemble :
This is not the best hatching dragon egg I've made, I think I did better with these previous eggs, but not bad in a single class, with lots going on.  I think I'll put this one in the soda firing, so I can play with some of the soda glazes.

Finally, I threw another closed form, to which I added an off-set opening, and found that I could re-use the Davidii leaves, as I had otherwise run out of my supply.
Between the leaves is black slip.  I made add black stain to highlight the leaves, or may not.  I plan to experiment with both approaches.

Next I played with rolling a very thin slab, and pressing small viburnum leaves into the clay, to make pendants.  I am still looking for something to collaborate with my friend Shelley, who makes wonderful beaded bracelets and other jewelry.  We'll see.  My idea was to press a leaf into both sides, since I don't like pendants or beads which are only finished on one side.  If I leave them unglazed, I can fire them without any extra trouble (although I do have some high temperature wire and a bead rack which I made a long time ago).

But I realized that I should also make a small plate or something that I can set the leaves on top of, so they won't be lost in the bisque or gas firings.  So I pressed a few more viburnum leaves into a slab, and draped it on a pentagonal mould.  I didn't have enough clay to go all the way to the edge, so I cut an intentionally wonky edge.  Here it is, with some of the leaf pendants lying inside :

I was too lazy to fight with a coil or other foot, so used some of the trimmings to make a funky looking foot. I was really pleased with the outcome :

Not bad for one day of pottery.  And better yet, I'll be back at pottery again in 3 more days.  Good thing, as I will sadly miss class next Sunday.

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