Friday, July 21, 2017

Texturing Pods

pod with texture in progress

This week's major project was a mental break from more thoughtful sculpting. This project is about a year delayed, since my Aunt asked me to start on it last summer. I'm making these textured, and eventually colorful pod sculptures for her.

textureless pod form
The pod sculptures are wheel thrown, then altered with five or six spines down their length. They have a hole on the bottom for a rod so they can be "planted" in a very large vase.

sketches from last year for this project

The sketches are from last year and though the sketches show mostly just striped texture down the I always knew I was planning on more texture between the ridges. 

sprig texture with plain (incomplete) background

After I added the ridges and smoothed them in place, I pressed clay into a sprig mold (over and over again) and attached the sprigs in between the ridges.

time-lapse video of placing sprigs

This particular sprig (see the link for a definition/demo of sprigs) was made from a plastic food toy. I have since had my daughter do some research and we discovered that the toy was a pineapple.

At first we thought the sprig came from peas, but upon closer inspection, the pineapple looks like a closer fit.

On the first pod, I attached the largest version of the sprig or an almost round smaller version, but on the second sculpture, I accidentally ended up with some single round sections. I added them in between the larger forms and liked the more varied sizes that resulted.

close up of pineapple sprigs of various sizes

After the accidental discovery, I started pressing more varied shapes from the one sprig mold.

sprigs waiting to be attached

I was happy with the resulting forms, but I have a difficult time saying no to texture, so I tried out a new ball stylus tool and then went overboard.

time-lapse of ball stylus texture application

I recently saw a call for an upcoming exhibition called "Pour it On." After I started using the ball stylus to overdo the background texture on the pineapple pod, I thought of this call and how my abstract sculpture usually ends up fitting into the overall category of "pouring on" the texture and color. 

bottom end of the pod

I spent several days on the surfaces of the pods, though the forms took very little time. I textured the lower end opening with the ball stylus, but wanted to change the texture on the top end.

top end of pod, partially textured

I left a hole in the middle of the top because I am thinking about having the support rod go all the way through the center of the form.

I took this video with my phone. It should be horizontal, but I don't know how to change the orientation!

I took several time-lapse videos of my process. It was tricky to get a video of the needle tool texturing because both times, though I held the camera horizontal, the video ended up vertical. It's also tough to hold the camera and use the needle tool at the same time. 

three pods complete

I've finished four of the pods, but I think I want to make at least five. I'm hoping to get these in a bisque kiln early next week and throw the last couple forms next week too.

three pods complete

No comments:

Post a Comment

Tell me what you think about my work or this post