Where have I been? Clay Camp! Every summer I teach an intensive ceramics class at my work studio. ( As opposed to my home studio) Its great fun, a lot of work, and a bit tiring. I just startled mysefl awake in a chair, iPad in my lap. When did I fall asleep? Whatever…
2 sessions. 10 days each. 1.5 hours a day in class. 2 classes a day.
ages 6-9 – sculpting and hand building/ sculptural and functional work.
ages 10-17 – same as above with wheel throwing in the mix and taking priority.
The saving grace – I have 2 ( yes – 2!!!) fab student teacher’s aides! Sweet! And I can pay them in clay…
So I thought I would show you exactly what we have been up to…
The first teen project was a relief tile – inspired by reading, and loosely book shaped. Here is Jo – during the laborious painting process. This took at least 2 hours, painting the details in underglaze. The finished tile is outstanding and full of symbolic images in every space. It looks better in person! (Can you find Orthanc? Boromir’s horn? A swan ship? The Eye? )
Center the clay, open the clay, raise or pull the clay… repeat. Get dirty. Enjoy!
Wheel thrown pieces by the teen age group. Dipped in the high fire ^10 glazes! Awaiting kiln loading!
Dry. Fire. Glaze. Dip. The hardest challenge of clay camp is drying. The humid weather forces me to break a few rules, and dry pots fast, on a hot kiln. Generallly this is a no-no. But the first week we are sculpting and throwing – I have to get things fired so we can glaze them!
New work from this week in Session 2. The book project tiles – expanded a bit to include the favorites Dr. Who and Star Trek. A coffee monster pinch pot. (How did you know it was me? ) And 2 sleeping creatures – an elephant tucked in with radio at his head, and my sample – a bunny reading a book, that I hope to finish tomorrow!
This is Emma, my teacher’s aide, trimming pots for the teens. In the time we have – I choose not to teach trimming right away. We clean up the pots on the wheel, and by hand a bit as needed. Some I trim, and now Emma volunteers. It IS rather Zen… So while Emma trims – her mom, artist Sarah Dressler, carves intricate designs into Emma’s thrown porcelain pieces. Sweet deal! And a great way to pass the time as Sarah isnt teaching this session…
So – in a week or so I will be fully immersed in bead and pendant making – getting ready for Beadfest in Philadelphia. But for know I am playing with clay, loading kilns and just having a good time. See you soon!