Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Update on Blue Reef Aquarium Sculptures

First of all: cave news.  Here they are!  As seen yesterday sitting in the electric kiln following their first (biscuit) firing.  All appears to have gone well with only a few minor flaws at places where I joined the individual caves together. I think these flaws will be eradicated during the reduction firing.  All in all, I'm really pleased with the results and looking forward to seeing the fully fired piece next week.  Phew!

So, on to the next piece... 

The 'anchor chain' is now finished and ready for firing also.  As it's unglazed earthenware, it'll only need one firing and so should also be complete next week. I did make a slideshow of how it was made, step-by-step, but then I realised that Blogger will only allow graphic file formats so I can't add it in here except by referencing it from elsewhere on the Net.  I'll do that when I get time, but not tonight!  In the meantime, here's an idea of the beginning...

loadsa clay rings

starting pieces and model in background for scale

.... and the completed work

This was immensely good fun to make!  I have really enjoyed all the work I've done for Blue Reef so far. I think, as I've said before, that part of it is that I'm imagining fish swimming around in my work whilst I'm making it! 

A few notes about the work, whilst they're fresh in my mind:  small scale models are not necessarily a good indictator of how a finished piece will look nor are they always helpful in determining how to approach construction.  I am beginning to realise that there is a lot to be gained from constructing sections of a work in full size in addition to making entire models.  In particular, with this work (and the caves), the weight of each component was far greater than in the equivalent model piece and this meant that downward force had a much more significant effect on the piece as a whole.  This required a change in overall design.

Fortunately, I remembered to build this piece directly on a kiln shelf this time, so I'm expecting it will be a breeze getting this piece into the kiln.  Shouldn't say that, should I? ;-)

I have a million other items I need to upload on to my blog.  It's been a real Summer of Art.  I wish there were more hours in the day.... 

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