For my third and final project for my module I have decided to focus more on ceramics, but to make it more textural and 3D. I decided to focus more on decay and primarily mould so took some photographs of textures present in the cemetery close to my university. The variety of textures allowed me to create many line drawings and observations, although random the textures have a lot of structure and form which, if on ceramic, would make the person want to touch the object due to its unusual form. I am hoping to translate one of these textures I have found into ceramic whether that’s through carving or compression of various materials. I will further explore this through my samples in the next coming weeks – including placing rice etc into slip or glaze as the rice will burn away in the kiln leaving the shape and texture exposed. I have also concluded from taking these pictures that more than likely the glaze will be a dry glaze to mirror the outside and to make the piece appear more textural and gritty.
For my final piece I used the shibori technique to dye the cotton a tie-dye blue. After dyeing and drying the fabric I then embroidered french knots into various points of the fabric, using light and dark blues and whites. With the excess fabric I did not embroider into this and used it to layer the piece on the arms. I also made 2 latex bowls in the way described in my previous blog post. These latex bowls were dyed a dark grey colour and wire has been looped under the arms and around the neck through piercing the latex bowls using a stitching needle. These latex bowls were attached to the mannequin and then the layers were built on top using glues and stitch to keep the strips of fabric in place. At first I fused the plastic on to the fabric, however, this did not look effective so I decided to fuse the plastic by itself and then stitch/glue the fused plastic onto the strips of dyed shibori fabric. I also was going to put the fused crisp packets and more plastic inside the bowls to make it look like the pieces were falling out of the bowls, however, when I placed them into the bowls, it took away from the way the piece draped along the body and took the attention away from it. If I was to repeat the making process again I would think more about how the piece would sit on the body and think more about fastenings so the piece would be easier to remove and place on the body.
To progress more with the mould idea from earlier in my sketchbook, I chose to create pieces which would be created in the factory, such as bowls, plates etc. The easiest to recreate was the bowl. I washed out a glass bowl and poured a layer of liquid latex into the bowl and then coated it around the sides of it. After about 5/6 hours this was completely set. I then repeated with another 11 layers to get them strong enough to become part of my jewellery pieces, but thin enough for a needle to penetrate so that I can loop the wire through to create my neck/body piece. I like the overall shape of the pieces, however with a proper mould the rim of the bowls would be straighter and more effective. Also, I will change the colour of the bowls as orange isn’t in my colour palette as it isn’t in the Halo collection. I will be painting them a dark grey colour to compliment the other colours I’m using and to mirror the colours used in Denby’s Halo collection.
For my initial collages i focused on the tones and colours present in the collection. Focusing on greys, blues and whites to mirror the colours of the Halo collection by Denby. To create the different tones of silver and grey I heated the inside of a crisp packet in-between greaseproof paper and applying pressure with an iron. This caused the plastic to shrink and create the bubbled effect, also where it became more hot it caused the silver to turn more of a grey colour. To create a more speckled, 3D effect I also embroidered french knots throughout the piece, dispersing them at various points across the collage to mirror the speckled random effect of the glaze present on the Halo collection. To further my samples I also looked into trapping embroidered between clear plastic and trapping fabrics between plastics.
For my second term I have chosen textiles/embroidery. The project involves us taking inspiration from the Denby pottery company. When we visited Denby we looked around the factory and shops, trying to pick something which interested us to take through to our individual projects. I chose the ‘Halo’ collection from 2010. The ombre colours, glaze, and speckled effect caught my eye and looked more textural compared to the other collections, which sparked my interest personally as I am drawn to textural surfaces. Plan to achieve texture through embroidery and a mixture of different materials to create interesting textures throughout my final piece.
For my final concept I decided to use the concept of the holes in the tableware as the other concept did not appear as well thought out or as effective visually. To improve on my initial tableware set I decided to make the holes larger as when they are fired the moisture is taken away and the clay shrinks, therefore shrinking the holes in the design. I also decided to spray the glaze on rather than dip because this looked more effective in my samples, however, when I sprayed the glaze for my final pieces it came out extremely uneven and the slip appeared to have drip marks and was not smooth to the touch when all of it was fired. Although I am happy with the concept and the way my samples turned out but the quality of my final pieces I was disappointed with. All of them were inconsistent in colour and shape and overall were not what I was expecting. However, I have learnt a lot through my first project of second year which will help me improve on my ceramics skills.
Another concept I initially had was the painful side of the shoes. As the cup and bowl are regularly drunk by the lips making contact with the edges of the vessel, I decided to make them uncomfortable by making sure the top edge was jagged making it awkward to sit on the lips and impractical for cleaning etc after use. The slip versus the non slip on the bowl I think is effective in terms of contrast as it allows the jagged edges to stand out in comparison to the rest of the object. Making them appear more profound and look more painful. However, I would swap the areas round so that the top edge has the colour and the rest is blank as this I feel would make them more effective if there is a single line of colour, bringing more attention to that specific area. These are effective I feel in shape and the impracticality of it. But to improve the look in the future I will not apply the slip with a brush, instead opting to dunk the pieces in slip to get a more consistent, even coverage.