Thursday, July 24, 2014

A Printing We Will Go

embossed paper design with various media

For my beginning drawers, this was the best way to end the year.
To come up with an original design and build a plate to emboss it into paper using a printing press, then to add their favorite medium/media.
Their plates were built onto dense cardboard by gluing all sorts of goodies to form their designs (yarns, wire, laces, cardboard shapes, thin buttons, etc.)
After the glue has dried for 24 hours they were taught to use the blotters and printing press.
After the embossments were dry they came in with their favorite medium.

This exquisite one above was done by junior Zoe Lin.
She used watercolor to bring in her added something.

Junior Nathan Chong who is showing off his drawing skills by bring in watercolor and pen and ink onto his embossment.

Senior Catherine Chiou used watercolor beautifully in her eye embossment in a primary color scheme, and below senior John Gaintano used both watercolor and pen and ink in his very cool design.

Senior Alex Arias (our Varsity pitcher) used his favorite player as inspiration for his piece and used just the right amount of watercolor to compliment it.

Junior Michael Cantu brings us once again one of his moody landscapes, his signature design go to, and uses watercolor to make it pop.

And senior Vivian Dinh-Dang also used watercolor in her mermaid design.
I have to say that I'm thrilled so many of my students are using watercolor, and using it so well.
I'm guessing they really enjoyed the watercolor unit.

Yoo-Bin Han, senior, is using it as well as bringing in beads and stones to enhance her non-objective design.
As is senior Kavya Madhavan below.
Beautiful work girls!

And this next one above by junior Michelle Ni was impossibly detailed and so well executed.
 I was really impressed Michelle!

And then a twist for extra credit. 
After embossing and doing the added color like junior Karen Malacon did above with the eye-catching pastel cityscape, she rolled printing ink over top her plate and then printed that for the piece below her other.
Not too many kids took advantage of this because we ran out of time, but if you look below, you will see junior Sunny Kim's floral embossment with watercolor and pastel next to her extra credit printing ink piece.
She was able to make time for the extra credit.
Bravo to all of you!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Get Out Your Paddles

clay, glazes, oxides

That's right, use those wooden paddles to beat, push and form your lump of clay into the most interesting shape you can.  
Then slice thru the upper portion and separate the two sections.
When they are leatherhard, carve them out so you end up with a container.
That's a Japanese Lump Box.

Ceramics I, help me out, I can't remember who belongs to this gorgeous piece.
Finishing is our Chili glaze with red iron accents.

I'm pretty darn sure this next one was created by junior William Lin.
Above you see the backside where he has hinged the lid on after the glaze firing.
I love all the stamped elements he bought into his form, and below you can see how the lid works as well as what the inside looks like.
I asked all the kids to glaze the inside since it's a container.
The outside was optional, either glazing or staining.

This next beauty was made by senior Minette Tsang.
Notice how thin and delicate the form is? 
And  below you can see how she hinged it.
She stained with Cobalt Carbonate then dipped into Transparent glaze.
Then she went back and painted Cobalt accents to highlight her vines.

Junior Jonathon Xue was the creator of this super clean piece.
Above right you can see his hinging system.
It had so many interesting angles for photographing.
Way to go Jon!
He, like William, brought in a lot of great stamped texture, then the both of then stained with Rutile oxide.

These next 3 cuties above were made by seniors Lacey Thach, Sameera Ahmad, and Neha Jain, 3 of my top senior clay artists.

And many of my favorites here were created by junior Ju Eun Lee with that sweet bird on top, senior Priya Sheth with her signature embedded metal pieces, and senior Norris Khoo with his impeccably crafted box.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Perfect Sweet Sixteen Dress

thrift shop finds, dye and embellishments

Student extraordinaire, Karisma Dev, junior, really outdid herself on this brand new experimental assignment.
I asked her to go to the thrift store and pick up several old garments that she might enjoy de-constructing and putting back together again into something new.
I asked her to choose a person she was designing for so that they could wear and model it for the blog.
She picked her little sister, Avanti, shown here wearing the finished garment.
And lovely pose.

Let me show you where she began.
Below are several pieces she brought to school thinking she might be able to work with.
This lovely, flowy beaded camisole.

This light and airy cotton and lace shift.

This patterned cotton top.

A lace, jersey blouse.

And this heavy cotton button down shirt.

In the finished garment she was to combine at least two of the garments into one, using at least 3 major cuts and reconstructs, alter the color in some way (she chose dye), bring in embellishments, and then make an accessory to accompany the piece like a headband, wristlet, something along that line.

So here is the finished dress and bralet.
Karisma, you are going to have to help me out here and let me know if I've got all this right, it's been a while since you made this.
I'm pretty sure she combined the camisole and shift, used the indigo dye bucket that was out...
found some of my mother's old embroidered linens and handkerchiefs that I keep around for the kids to use...

and hand beaded the bottom of the hem with seed beads, and the linen tips with larger beads.
Her accessory was even more then I was imagining.
It was a bralet to go partially under the dress but was to be viewed from the back side.

The dress was Karisma's gift to her sister for her to wear to her sweet sixteen birthday party.
You did an amazing job with this assignment Karisma.
 And your sister looks beautiful in the dress.

I will definitely be teaching this again next year and can't wait to see what Laarnie will do with the assignment.
You are a hard act to follow woman!!
And know that I'm so very proud of you!

And this last picture is my favorite.
I love how you posed your sister off center and had her turn her head.
Very, very cool!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Don't be Afraid to Mess It Up

clay, glazes, oxides

My Ceramics II kids all learn how to throw on the potter's wheel in their 2nd semester with me.
They start off with cylinders then move on to vases forms and mugs.
As they learn I encourage them to try and alter their pieces by stamping, cutting, piercing, poking, paddling, the list is long.
At first they resist, but by the 4th quarter they start experimenting a bit.

So as I demonstrate I always make sure I alter every piece I make.
In my demonstration above I stamped opposite sides with a tribal button I found as well as pushed out the other two sides with my finger.
To finish I stained it with rutile oxide then transparent glaze over top.
The succulents are from my garden that I propagate.
This piece was one of my gifts to alumni Alyssa Olea for her hard work throughout the year as my Assistant. 

The rest of the pieces were made by my students.
I love how senior Tahnee Thantrong messed with her mug to fold the clay around the rim as well a leaning it to the right.
These small changes makes the piece so much more interesting to the eye.

This next one above was also made by Tahnee and it's so much fun, not only in the altering but in the glazing as well.

The last two below belong to senior Shamara Mustafa.
I believe that when she was trimming the bottom, a piece of the rim chipped off so she chipped more pieces off all the way around to save and balance the work.
To finish she sponged on cobalt blue carbonate then dipped into our blue-green glaze which has transparent qualities.
What a pretty little piece Shamara!

In this piece Shamara simply pinched in the rim on opposite sides to alter then accented it with her glazing.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Early Summer Garden

We've had a very humid summer so far this year, with one small thunderstorm that brought us a bit of sprinkle.
Just enough to tease the plants.
And so the severe drought continues with fines starting in August for over watering.
I'm in big trouble, I see it coming, cuz I love to water my plants.
I'll keep you posted.
If you are new to Artisun, my husband and I live in a condo with two tiny patios.
And my mother passed onto me her green thumb, so I fill up our space with trees (mini Magnolia on the upper left and an ornamental Loquat that I grew from a seed on the right), vegetables (this year it's 3 tomato, kale, basil, swiss chard, & asparagus), fruit (boysenberry, grape, grapefruit, avocado & strawberries), succulents, and lots of flowers (I use them in my dye experiments).
This is our lower patio above and below...

our upper patio (boysenberries), and then back to lower for a bit more of everything.
and then a close-up below of one of my most recent dye adventures.