Tuesday, 31 May 2011

The squirrel is driving me mad!

This is the progress so far...

As you can see, he now has a tail...

But he still has no hands or feet...

You see, last Tuesday I managed to sort his ears out, but I just couldn't get the tail right. In the end I gave up, exhausted.

This time I managed to get the tail right, but I just couldn't do the hands! I must have made the hands 3 or 4 times tonight. It's driving me insane! I suppose I'll have to be satisfied with only completing one part of our friend each session.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

OK, so it's not a Panda...

On the day I decided to make a panda, I didn't actually have enough paper clay for the project (which is the clay I decided to use, because I can build quicker without it slumping). So I decided to gather all my dried up pieces together to recycle them, when I came across this:

Remember this? This is the squirrel I started in December as a demonstration piece at a craft fair (umm... just ignore the face, I was having a bad day!). Over the months it had completely dried out and it's head had been squashed as well. It didn't matter, because as all clay people know, nothing is set in stone until it has been fired - and set to stone! So instead of recycling it I decided to rehydrate it and finish it off while I was waiting for more clay for my panda.

I should have taken more photos of the process! The bottom fell off, so I had to stick that back on, and I didn't just cut his head off, but I cut him down half way down his back to make it more curved. This how far I have got with him:

I should have him finished by now, but I can't believe how much I am struggling with confidence! I even find myself cleaning dishes in an attempt to avoid unwrapping my clay! (Yeah, how weird is that?) The stupid thing is that I know that if it goes wrong it doesn't matter! Now I'm annoyed with myself because I've wasted a whole day of potential clay time. If someone could explain this crazy head of mine to me, I'd really appreciate it.

Anita seemed to understand it. She said it's like that fear of facing a blank canvas and not knowing where to start. Do other clay people get like this?

Sunday, 15 May 2011

What am I doing??

Hey, no posts in three months and then two posts in as many days! What's going on?? :)

I just thought I'd share my thoughts with you today because I feel like I'm losing myself somewhere. Being tired and busy with other things has just sucked the enthusiasm right out of me, so any energy and motivation I can muster up is precious.

I have this show coming up in July that I said I would take part in, although I haven't officially booked my stall yet. Deep down I know I'm too tired to get ready for it, but I can't bring myself to send that cancellation email because I was really looking forward to taking part. This would be my biggest event yet, and there will be so many other fun things going on, like live tribute bands. I can hear them from my house every year and they sound great!

Now, the thing is, I actually have some items already that I could display, so if push came to shove I wouldn't actually need to make any more to have a full stall, but these are mostly larger items that people are less likely to buy. If I want to recoup my stall fee I know I need to make some smaller items, so with my limited energy I need to ask myself if I can really do it. And realistically, I am not going to fill my kiln, so is it worth it? And do I want to waste my energy making saleable items, instead of pieces of art?

Yes, I know the sensible answer is to just send off that cancellation email...

And I'm starting to think I should have bought a smaller kiln.

Update: 16/5/11 I've sent off the cancellation email! The deciding factor was seeing a program about Pandas last night, and now I want to make one! :)

Saturday, 14 May 2011

What's three months between friends?

Hello everybody! I just thought I would come online to announce that I am not dead, and I am still alive and (just about) kicking!

I have hardly been creative at all since... well, since last year really, which is shocking! I have made a few decorative plates and a few coasters, but that's about it. The worst thing is, I haven't even been keeping up to date with everyone else's blogs! Unforgivable! I don't even really know where all my time goes! I've been struggling with all of the usual struggles, which I won't list because it's so... boring.

In other news, I bought a new camera :) mainly because the camera on my new phone is so rubbish! But also because... we're going on holiday this year! Yes, our first holiday in 12 years! So I wanted a decent camera because we plan to go to the zoo and the sea life centre, and I want to get some good photos (for reference maybe). I have mixed feeling about these places because animals shouldn't really be kept in cages, but on the other hand it's a fantastic opportunity for your average Jo Bloggs (i.e. me) to see these amazing creatures in the flesh, and sometimes these places do good things in breeding rare animals and raising awareness.

So that's my little bit of news, now here's the photos...

I tried to make some porcelain pendants, but they started cracking before I'd even finished making them!

These are some decorative plates I made using wall paper!

This one is actually diamond shaped which doesn't show very well in the photo.

And I also made some coasters.

It's gonna take me a very long time to fill my kiln at this rate!