Saturday, December 31, 2016

Upcoming Posts

November was an extremely busy month for me since I had to prepare for my show and everything. While December wasn't as busy, I had to deal with more personal matters. With that being said, here's what to expect within the upcoming month:

- The November Progress Report will be divided into four different posts since I have nearly 100 pictures from that month.

- A series of posts about shows I've had over the last few years.

- A review of 2016 with edited pictures of everything I've done throughout the year.

- A new list of upcoming projects for the new year.

- A possible sneak peak of new buttons of ceramic pieces that'll go on sale soon.

Just in case anyone was wondering, there will be no December 2016 Progress Report. After my show, I was busy with other things, but work on any unfinished projects had ceased for the remainder of the year and there are no new pictures beyond November.

That's pretty much it. My next post will hopefully be in a few days.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

2016 Progress Report: October

In October, My focus turned to making more of a variety of ceramic work and continuing work on some old mixed media projects. I also had digital projects in the works, although I don't have any preview pictures for those. The complete versions will be posted in the near future. Despite how busy October was, November will prove to be even more hectic, as the date for the show comes closer.

10/5/16: This ugly slab will hopefully become a nice looking piece that hangs on a wall.

10/5/16: This piece dried just enough to allow the burnishing work to be done. Burnishing is not easy and requires patience.

10/5/16: More Burnishing work.

10/5/16: Even more burnishing work.

10/5/16: Burnishing work on these angular pieces proved to be more difficult.

10/5/16: More difficult burnishing work.

10/5/16: Even more difficult burnishing work.

10/12/16: I managed to make that ugly slab look a little more presentable.

10/19/16: The bisque firing is done. Some of the shine went away but it'll come back. I also noticed a slight crack that appeared on the top of the piece. It doesn't ruin it by any means but it is worth mentioning.

10/19/16: This piece also happened to survive the firing. It doesn't look like much though, at least not yet.

10/19/16: The egg piece survived the firing just fine.

10/19/16: This was also fired along with the other pieces.

10/19/16: Not much to say here.

10/19/16: Also not much to say here.

10/19/16: This is the second in a series of wall pieces. This looks better than the first piece in my opinion.

10/19/16: This piece has fallen way behind schedule but it is finally getting somewhere. This is based on something I was working on back in 2010. The piece went through a process of deconstruction before finally going through some reconstruction.

10/19/16: This piece is somewhat large and thin. Because of that, reinforcement is needed. Also, I'm mapping out where everything is supposed to go such as the piece of wood that will eventually be used for the hanging hooks.

10/26/16: This piece will use one coat of ferric chloride.

10/26/16: This piece will use two coats of ferric chloride.

10/26/16: This piece will use three coats of ferric chloride.

10/26/16: This piece will use a combination of copper wire, horse hair, and sugar.

10/26/16: This piece uses the same material, but in a different way.

10/26/16: Again, same materials, just placed on there in a different way.

10/26/16: This piece is now wrapped up like a baked potato and is ready to be fired.

10/26/16: This is also ready for the final firing.

10/26/16: This will also be fired at the same time as the other pieces.

10/26/16: This is the third wall piece that I'm working on. It was a little tricky to make because of the negative space that the other pieces didn't have.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

2016 Progress Report: September

September got off to a slow start, although things did accelerate when I found out when my show was going to be, which allowed me to plan certain projects. Future sagger and pit firings were the main focus for the month since I wanted to get those out of the way first, although my projects from the spring were unfortunately still unfinished and I had to get those out of the way. October would be and even busier month.

9/7/16: The remaining work on this piece was somewhat easy. It had a simple design so dealing with everything from the shape of the name label to the molding paste and felt was easy to deal with. Though like all the other hollow pieces, getting the label in place was somewhat difficult.

9/7/16: The story for this is pretty much the same as To The Sky.

9/7/16: Creating the label for this piece was somewhat complicated. There wasn't much room to do anything. Somehow, I managed to do it.

9/7/16: Creating the lable for this surprisingly wasn't quite as difficult as Season of Growth. Still, it is a very small label.

9/7/16: This was easy to finish. In fact, most of everything about this piece was easy. That's also why I have mixed feelings about it. It looks alright, but also looks like something I might have done in 2013.

9/14/16: This is a simple design made out of coils. I'm hoping this will eventually be used for a pit firing. The idea behind this was to create an imperfect sphere.

9/21/16: The idea behind this was to take the imperfect sphere idea and show what would happen if it were squeezed. I have to say I'm not particularly fond of this shape, but I'm gambling on the idea that it'll look good in the end.

9/27/16: The idea behind this piece was to imgine if I took the previous week's piece and squeezed it again. I was going for an egg shape here.

9/28/16: There were three pieces like this that were made. This along with two other pieces were candidates for saggar firings. The difference between these pieces when compared to past saggar pieces is the shape. Past pieces took on more of a cone shape whereas these pieces go for a more triangular shape, though without sacrificing the curviness of other pieces. I have no idea how well this will work out.

9/28/16: As with many pieces that I work on as a series, this is the wider angular saggar piece.

9/28/16: This is the "short" piece in this series of saggar firings.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

2016 Progress Report: August

August was a strange month. The beginning of August was a very productive time for me. Then the summer ceramic course ended and the following weeks were not productive at all. I guess you could say I was resting. Then when the semester started up again at the end of August, I was busy again. Needless to say, not a whole lot got done, but it was beginning of things to come.

8/2/16: The firing is complete and foil has come off. These looked very ugly prior to the polishing work. A good way to tell wether I succeeded with these saggar firings is to pour water on them. That gives me a good indication of what they'll look like after applying the polish.

8/2/16: Later in the day, the polishing work is complete and these pieces are looking much better.

8/4/16: These are the bottoms of the ceramic dishes I was working on back in July. This set is named after a piece I did back in 2015 called Tension. Although these pieces don't look anything like that piece, both projects used the same glazes.

8/31/16: After taking a break for several weeks, this is finally done. One thing that I try to do when adding felt is to hide it. Technically, you're not supposed to see it when the piece is standing up, but from certain angles, you can still tell it's there. I hide it by lightly applying black acrylic paint around the edges of the felt.

8/31/16: This is done too. This was one of the easier ones to do.

8/31/16: I believe this was almost done at the time this picture taken. I think the only thing that was left to do was to add polymer medium. Whenever I end up using acrylic paints anywhere on a ceramic piece, I always use that afterwards to give the paint a shine so it looks like it was part of the piece rather than being just paint on a piece.

8/31/16: Applying the label was not easy but the work with the felt was easy. It's because this piece had a simple circular shape on the bottom.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

2016 Progress Report: July

By this point, I had been in the summer ceramics class for about a month. Since the work that I was doing was strictly for stuff that I'm putting up for sale, these pieces had less of an experimental aspect to them which meant that the work was minimal and could be done more quickly. That part wasn't the problem. The restrictive schedule of the summer class was a problem. Time itself was the hardest part of all this. Nonetheless, I was never that far behind schedule.

7/5/16: The glazing is done for the newest pieces. If these turn out alright, they will go on sale in the fall.

7/12/16: There was limited room in the kiln for all the pieces, so only the small ones were fired. The first three were based on glazes that I had used towards the end of the spring whereas the other three used combinations of four glazes that I used late last year.

7/12/16: These are in the process of drying. The coils I used to make these were thicker than what I used on the saggar piece that these pieces are based on. This was because it allowed me to build them more quickly. Despite my attempts to trim some of the excess clay, these are still thick pieces and they're taking longer to dry than I wanted them to.

7/19/16: Finally, they're all fired. I now have to get around to labeling these and adding felt as well as any necessary acrylic paint. Since each series is based on a combination of glazes that I had used for other projects, each series will be named after the first project to use the selected glaze combinations.

7/26/16: The bisque firing is done.

7/28/16: When doing saggar work, I apply the chemical known as ferric chloride. Since saggar work is not glazed, the ferric chloride helps give the pieces their unique colors. Even though these pieces are part of the same series, for experimental purposes, each of them use different coats of the ferric chloride. From left to right, each piece uses on, two, and three coats. Although I did not mark each piece as to know which one is one, they have a enough of a physical difference for me to know which is which.

7/28/16: I had wanted to get a picture of this since I don't think I ever got this kind of picture before. I almost forgot about it which is why one of the pieces is wrapped up already. On all three of these, I tried to keep the decorations as minimal is as possible. Also, I wanted all three to be as similar as possible so I could get a better judgement of the experiment. On each of them, I used one strand of copper wire, one strand of horse hair, and a little bit of sugar, which is applied by spraying water on the piece. A minimal amount of tape was used to keep the hair and wire in place as much as possible.

7/28/16: These are ready to go but since they were fired late, I would have to wait until the folloing week to know how they turned out. I should mention that the texture of the foil will have an effect of these pieces as much as the copper wire, horse hair, and sugar.