Sunday, October 26, 2008

More from the Bird Queen

This is a platter that I have been making over and over trying to get the exact image that I want.
It is getting very close. After I figure out the image in clay then I think I will try the image in color and also as a lino print. This is the opening line for the Bird Queen story I have been writing. My sweet and talented niece Queen Crafty Girl
(you can't tell I am a proud Aunt can you?) has been writing her own story about the Bird Queen that is AMAZING...much better than mine I'm afraid.

The first line of the story if you can't see clearly, "Once when the sky grew black with feathers, the Bird Queen was born under the old crow tree."






















And here are some bird girls in their finery with feathers flying from their hair.




Robyn over at Art Propelled
did a blog post about crows that I thought was amazing and funny. Crows are a great inspiration for many artists and she highlights some beautiful and some creepy sculptures.

16 comments:

Undaunted said...

These pieces look fantastic! But it's comforting for me to know that it doesn't always turn out how you want it to first time! Do you draw out these pictures on paper first? It's a whole different way of drawing though isn't it? Because instead of drawing where you want colour, you're "drawing" where you want white. I suppose you get used to it after a while. I've been afraid to try anything too ellaborate in case it goes horribly wrong. I suppose I could practice on tile shape pieces? At least then I haven't put too much effort into the piece before hand.

I wanted to ask you about your coloured slip. This one that looks blue, is this the one that comes out black when fired? The slip we have in class is called black, but it's definitely brown. The tutor said you can't really get a true black, but I know that can't be true because your finished pieces look very black. Oh well, when I'm more experienced I'll perhaps have my own slip at home.

You are definitely the sgraffito queen though!

painter girl said...

Hey Un D,
You are so sweet!
Thank you.
Now to get down to the questions...I don't draw on paper first unless it is a totally complicated piece.
I used to pre sketch but since I have been doing it for awhile, I can usually manage without it. When I do an order though, especially if I am making a piece with someone's animal on it, I do a tile as my sketch. Paper really doesn't do it for me because like you mentioned the feeling is so different and it is exactly backward.
I so wish you lived closer. Then we could talk on the phone( i am a terrible typist) so that we could gab for hours about all this clay stuff! What fun would that be?

My black slip is as follows:
Daniel Rhodes Slip
epk (kaolin) 25%
om-4 ball clay 25%
feldspar 20%
silica 20%
tin oxide 2%
black mason stain #6600 10%

Slips are very easy to make and you should definitely think about making your own slip eventually. This slip looks blue/ dk. grey before it is fired in the glaze firing.

The black mason stain is what makes it truly black. I suspect that your teacher is using metals as colorants and he is right. It is really hard to get a true black with colorants though I can send you a recipe that uses metals and is as close to black as I have ever gotten. Just let me know if you want that for future reference.

Mason stains are colorants and have so many wonderful colors to choose from. The drawback is that they are expensive. And to make a whole bucket of slip for a class would be pricey. Metals on the other hand are relatively cheap. This might explain his choice?

I love it! Do I get a crown?
Leanne

Undaunted said...

Wouldn't that be great if we could talk on the phone? I'd probably become really shy though and forget what I want to ask you! Do you have skype?

Thanks for the recipe. So far I don't really have a clue where to buy these ingredients from, but I suppose it's something I will look into in time. We are limited with colours in class - only the brown/black slip and for glazes we have white, cream, honey, blue, green and brown.

Do you think it's better to colour a piece with slip and then use clear glaze, or use coloured glazes? Then of course there are underglazes which I know nothing about! I need to get reading! My tutor openly admits that he's not really into glazing - he likes rough pieces and raku firing rather than pretty detailed pieces. I think you're right about the cost. He's always going on about the price of red stain, which we don't use.

You definitely should have a crown! :)

painter girl said...

You shouldn't be shy!
I am just a crunchy potter!
My hubby just told me about skype...interesting!
We should skype. I'll have to download it.

You probably have a local clay store where you can get these chemicals. Your clay teacher can tell you where he orders from.

About glazing...
I would try everything. I personally do try everything. I use colored glazes over the slip carved pieces to see what they will do. For me glazing is one big experiment and I try not to be disappointed when things go bad. (I'll post last weeks nasties)
You can also use glazes layered over each other but if the glazes are too thick they will run....
I 'll have to download skype.
I'll get back to you.
Too much info for bloggin
Leanne

Undaunted said...

Ooh great! You'll be able to show me examples over the webcam! :D

painter girl said...

Hey Un D,
Downloaded skype but can't find my microphone yet. Will let you know when I do and you can give me a tutorial on how to actually do it. I'm sure it's simple but I am not so great at computers.
Leanne

Undaunted said...

well we're pretty new to skype ourselves! I'm sure we can sort it out between us though - hubby's used it a few times now. It's actually hubby's granddad that got us using skype! He's been using it for years! We'll have to arrange a time due to time zones - I have no idea of the time difference. Here in the uk we have just put our clocks back an hour for winter, I don't know if you do that in the US or not. Hey, I'm actually typing this on my mobile phone! Technology these days eh? (I can skype on my phone too but there's no video)

Robyn said...

The Bird Queen series is great! I love the Bird Queen platter with the crows. I'm wondering if Queen Crafty has tried her hand at clay. With you for a teacher...wow, how lucky she is!

Robyn said...

P.S. Thanks for the mention

Undaunted said...

Hi Leanne,

This isn't the recipe I saw on pink glazes, but I found this link on Cynthia's website and thought it might be useful. And Cynthia posts her results here.

I think what I saw was a back issue of a ceramics magazine.

Mom and daughter said...

When I saw the Bird Queen platter, I was just taken aback at how it embraces the story. The carving just made it come alive in my head. Can't wait to see it in person.

Love you bunches!

Sister T

lynne h said...

oh my, leanne! the bird queen platter is fabulous! as is everything else in this post! leaves and birds and trees and queens... can there be more of what i love in one spot? i'm just crazy about your art...

Jacky said...

Your Bird Queen Series are amazing...especially love the platter with the Bird Queen.

You are a wonderful potter, I love the birds in your pieces - both clay and drawings. YOu make me want to learn how to make pots (I am actually reading a novel at the moment, "A Cup of Light" about the pottery of early China).

painter girl said...

Hey Robyn,
She has done clay with me and with another teacher and she is very good at it. I hope she will get into it more and more as she gets older. She is a good carver too!

Un D,
Thanks for the link!
I am excited to try the recipes.
Love the pinks on this page.

Hey Sister T,
So glad you like the images. I think I am getting better at the illustration of the story. Now if I could just finish writing it...

Thanks so much Lynne and Jacky!
Your words make my heart lift!

Jacky you should try your hand at clay. I bet you would be amazing.
I am going to try to find that book. It sounds like my king of novel.

Zom said...

What wonderful images that you create on your ceramics. I am so impressed.

painter girl said...

Thanks bunches Zom! Your work is pretty amazing and inspiring.