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Sunday, September 04, 2011

What I've Been Doing In The Clay Studio

Although the top doesn't fit as nicely as I would like, most of that "space" is a shadow. I wanted to make shabbat candlesticks using a box so that the box would hold the extra candles (you buy shabbat candles in large quantities). Because it's extremely difficult for me to get the size of the candle holder part right, I made open tubes. I have ordered drip cups specially sized for standard sized shabbat candles. The drip cups will go into the tubes. I haven't decided if I want to glue down the drip cups, or leave them loose so that they are easier to clean. 

Note to self: when carving words into the bottom of a lid, carve boldly. 

This is the first of my canisters for potatoes and onions. I neglected to write down the color number of the slip I used, so I can't patch up the spots where the slip stuck to the plastic. I used a carving tool to make dots and lines. I used a hole making tool to make the holes. I put the holes in various places on the sides of the canister. 

The first shabbot candlestick/box resembled a velveeta cheese box. So, I tried using different dimensions. It looks like a house. If I make this size again, I'll give up and make a mansard roof for it. Double chimneys were popular on large, 18th century houses. I could make something resembling a stucco house of New Mexico, but then the double chimneys would be wrong. 

Third box and photos showing the process. I just butted the ends up for the second box, and I wasn't that thrilled with how it worked out. Although it's a little more difficult to use beveled edges, I like the results far better. 

Jim made me a 45 degree cutter, and that's what I use to make the beveled edges. I put a roll of clay into the corners and along the bottom to add strength and to avoid glaze problems. The corners cool faster than the rest of the piece, and I've had glaze problems when I didn't put a roll of clay into the corners. 

I rounded over the edges on the bottom so that the box wouldn't look like it was glued to the table. I didn't want to make legs for the box. 

Coils in the corner before they get smoothed out. 

It's been a while since I played with colored slips. I want to fire these pieces in reduction and slips do funky things in reduction. Yes, these are all ^04 and yes, I'm going to do a reduction firing. Anyway, I have problems with my brush strokes showing when I use slip. I wondered what would happen if I tried exploiting the brush strokes rather than fighting with them. I used a layer of pale green slip, a layer of blue slip, and a final thin layer of pale green slip. I'm hoping to get depth of color. 

I put a couple layers of terra sig on the bottoms of my pieces so the bottoms are smooth. 

Another look at the "house" box. 

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