Sunday, 20 June 2010

This one is strange

Got the top on my table on Friday. Hmm, making the top separately may not have been such a great idea, as it looks a little strange. Fish associations may have turned into more anvil/ ironing board, but we shall see. There is an eccentricity and a certain elegance which I quite like but I am not sure that the construction is controlling me rather than me the construction!

With this scale I had to have everything pretty firm before the assembly stage, and beyond the point of no return as far as altering things. Still, I do have a second one, (oh yes) under wraps so I will take the lesson on board and hope to improve.

I had to use my RSJ template again to secure the legs. I never thought of myself as an engineer - indeed an engineer I am most definitely not, Allie and I were discussing the intuitive and the planned as making approaches. I would have to call this structure 'intuitive engineering', the concept of which is possibly a bit of an oxymoron.
Nothing engineering about the latest dreadlocks. French knitting and quite addictive it is too.

Samba Sisters had a float at Kelloholm gala on Saturday. We wound round all the little back streets scaring several dogs, but being rewarded by a sea of smiling faces of all ages.

Meat pies, unidentifiable flat sandwiches, coloured cakes and fizz laid on for the performers, brilliant stuff!

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Try and try again


There was so much finishing off for Spring Fling it is good to be making again. I threw loads of mugs last Wednesday, and with Allie back from Malawi to help with slipping and handles we should get them all ready for me to slip trail soon.

I had some extruded sections waiting under polythene from several weeks ago, and I have got started on some new large scale ideas.


I have an idea for a table which involves a wavy upright central column. I made a die which used the full capacity of the Big blue. It extruded beautifully but then how/when to cut it off. I dried it for a while with the heat gun and left it with a wedge underneath to air dry for the rest of the afternoon. No hurry to cut it off, I could do that at bedtime if need be. Ten minutes after Allie left I heard a loud WHOOMPH as it collasped and hit the wooden floor. Och weel, Try again. The next time Allie and I tried to lie it sideways, (after an initial power dry), but no chance. The middle was still too soggy. It was on the fouth attempt that I got out the big guns - the gas burner. This time I really got the thing steaming. I could see it trying to rip at the top and kept ramming clay ‘sticking plasters’ on to the tear until eventually I won. I still left it for an hour or so hanging from the big blue, but what a beauty. Tomorrow maybe I will get it joined to the base. I held it there just to try and it looked like it had potential.

I also want to make another seat with more of a bottom shape.

I've got the section tipped off, but I shall have to wrap it up tight until the mugs are decorated. I do get a great sense of satisfaction from the slipped thrown ware but it is the big stuff that really gets me excited at the moment, so I am having to be very patient. I need more hours in the day and more days in the week at the moment. But then it is also summer, and I don't want to miss the good weather, I need to cut the grass, find time to get out on my bike, sail a boat and play music. Sometimes it just isn't possible to fit it all in!


I decided to spend the last of my official funding on getting some swanky photographs of some of my latest pieces. It was rather a scary thing to transport the eagle seat up to Edinburgh ( as it is has already been homed), and in particular I kept thinking about Hannah, and cars shunting into my boot. I’ve probably never used the rear mirror so much.

It was a most interesting day, looking at these amazing images on Shannon's computer screen, which were actually my pots! It was also very exhausting and quite draining, making so many decisions, and actually quite strange to have so much time to really look at and contemplate my own work. Maybe it's like seeing yourself on stage - 'Am I really that ugly, mixed with, oh my profile isn't that bad actually......' Whatever I’m excited about seeing the final images.