Woman #5

R - Woman #5

Musings of the Artists Mind

Deep into my explorations of these materials, I wanted to try and build a big piece out of Red Earthenware clay. I hadn’t played much with the medium and was more uncertain of how to finish it, than anything else. I dove into it, like I would with a lightly grogged Raku clay body. I build the shell and thicker base, then started to push the curves outward from the back. I quickly discovered that this clay was much less elastic and dried much faster, so it cracked quickly. I added more clay as if modelling, but from behind first and continued pushing forward. The structure finally got very heavy and more lumpy than I originally hoped. It felt bulky. 

I was able to add definition as I smoothed the surface and removed the cracks. I covered the whole piece in paper and plastic to sit for a week. More cracks appeared during this drying and I added more clay to the tops of the breast. Then I used a sponge to make the whole surface more uniform. However the heavy grog content of this clay, made the surface very rough. I decided to stay with it as an interesting contrast to the sensual curves. If I were to do this again, I would take the time to burnish the surface, as the shape invites touching, but the current surface feels unpleasant the touch. 

The glazing was a technique that alternates thin coats of matte and glossy glazes, in this case, Matte White & Glossy Black. The iron content of the clay seems to have turned the glazes to a sepia range, whereas I was expecting the usual grayish green surface. 

I’ve contemplated rubbing the surface with furniture wax, but I feel it might not add the leathery effect I hope for. Time will tell. 

Ok, I really need more live models! All the others died.  When you design your world with The Artist’s Stuff: Prints, Fashion, and uniquely awesome Decor ideas!

What inspires an artist? 

“All they see” is the first and most literal answer. 

For me, that is literally hundreds of gallery & museum exhibits, thousands of books, and tens of thousands of images online.  

Books that Inspired and Influenced my Experimentation:

When asked where to start a book collections, I almost always recommend these art bibles: Janson’s “History of ArtOR Phaidon’s “The Art BookBoth give a nice overview with good pictures. Once you’ve discovered what you are attracted to there most, you can then dig deeper into that area.

These are perhaps the most accessible influences, but the truth is that my influences run deep through thousands of books and works I’ve seen & read. If you have the time, you are free to visit my GoodReads library to see a fraction of the books I’ve read. These are the ones I remember, that is. Or you can visit the ever growing collection on my Pinterest account. 


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