Friday, 31 October 2008

New Toys! (and some waffle as usual!)

Here are my new toys! Firstly, the battery operated eraser, which I bought for myself last week.

I tried it out today and it worked really well! With only a few minutes practice I was able to erase a very thin line with it. I expect on Tuesday I will get to use it "for real" at my drawing and painting class, and then I'll have a better idea of how useful a tool it is or isn't. I thought it was quite inexpensive too - £1.99 (GBP) including 6 eraser tips from my local stationary and crafts shop.

And today Postman Pat brought me these!

How exciting! I shopped around a little for these as they were really expensive from our local shop, and I found a great price on a website called Great Art, whom I have bought from before. For only £20.50 I got 5 A4 pieces of lino and my cutting tools, and that price includes the P&P as well! My order came in less than a week, which I thought was pretty good considering (I think) it came from Germany. It took nearly as long for our local shop to get the things in for me to view, and it was only coming from the next town!

I'm hoping to have a little go this weekend, although I'm not sure when I will get to use the linocuts on clay - I'm hoping to be throwing at Monday's class, and I still have the base of my castle to make, not to mention the test tiles for the glazes we have at class. "Shouldn't your tutor make the test tiles?" I hear you ask. Well, maybe, but it's good practice for me and I kind of want to do it myself so that I can test as many colour combinations as I want. I know it will take up some class time, but this is going to be more than a "Monday evening hobby" for me, so I think it is time well spent. Some people just use the class to get out of the house for a while, try something new, and maybe make a few things for their home, and they're not really interested in the technical side of things. They're happy to just be told "dip it in this bucket if you want green" but that's not enough for me. I want need to know everything there is to know. Eventually I want to be able to spread my wings and work independently without the need of guidance from a tutor. Eventually I want my own kiln, my own wheel, my own glazes, my own studio. This is who I am now. Painting and drawing is a lovely hobby, but clay is who I am.

I will be eternally grateful to my dear friend Philippa for inspiring me and helping me remember that fact. Philippa, however excited I get about this journey, I never forget that it is all because of you. Thank you.


cynthia said...

New toys are always so much fun!

I almost purchased an electric eraser when I was in landscape arch school a few years ago - it's a must for drafting and drawing.

No, your tutor shouldn't make your test tiles! Everyone should know how to make them - and theres so many styles, flat, extruded, thrown mini bowls, pinched.

I knew clay was for me years before I took my first class - it's a weird thing. I'm always surprised when people don't like clay - the talented Jafabrit is a prime example. I remember her writing that she hates the feel of clay awhile back. In my head, I was saying, "What is she talking about? It's the best thing in the world!" But, I guess it's a good thing that we're all attracted and good at different things.

Use caution with the carving tools - I speak from experience.

Undaunted said...

Thanks Cynthia,

I agree about making my own test tiles. The tutor said he would show me the best shape to make (in his opinion). I shall make them the way he suggests since I still don't know much about loading kilns and he perhaps has that in mind. Some people in the class are really not that interested in learning all this stuff though - they're happy to let the tutor wedge and fire for them and tell them what glaze to use. He's very easy going and lets people learn as much or as little as they want.

Cynthia, I wonder if you are like me and have always had a fascination with ceramic objects? I've collected mugs since I was 17 - I can't help getting over excited in the mug section of shops! My hubby couldn't understand how I could talk in such detail about the shape and depth of a mug!! Maybe he understands why now? I shall have to post some pictures of some of my favourite ones.

Ouch! Did you stab yourself with a carving tool or something? I couldn't wait and I've made my first lino cut already! (I'll post that soon) I had done lino cutting before, a long time ago in school, so I remembered to cut away from myself. Thank you for the warning though.