Sunday, September 22, 2013

Inspiration is Where You Find It

When I drive down to Portland to teach my classes, I always bring a bin of tools and materials for my demos. At a minimum I bring my throwing tools, and my box of stamps. Students are free to borrow the stamps; I'm not one to worry that their pots will look like mine - I'd like to think it would take more than a stamp mark to duplicate me. Students who find they like the technique often make their own corral of stamps.

On Thursday, when I left class, I forgot my box of stamps.

This is sort of a big deal, as Portland is an hour away, and Friday, Saturday, Sunday are usually my most productive studio days. This happens to be a wetwork week - if I were glazing or firing, obviously less need for stamps in those cases. (And by "less" I mean "no".) I was thinking of driving down - maybe throw a bunch of ware, and make the drive while it's drying to a leatherhard, stampable state - and then my eye fell upon my new swimdress. (And by new I mean bought-used-on-Ebay-four-months-ago. What? That's why God made washing machines!) I'm not gonna go long about the swimsuit, but I am gonna say, if you're resisting buying a swimdress because it's what old ladies wear, give in and get one already! Much better for climbing in and out of canoes.

But I digress.

It occurred to me that the pattern on the swimdress would look very nice slip trailed. In the past I have just trailed simple lines or dots, but hey: no stamps? A great opportunity to expand my slip trailing skills. Here's what I came up with:

After that I started looking around the house for other fabric inspirations. And lo! the curtains right beside my desk had potential. Here's how that pattern played out:

Obviously I didn't try for a literal copying of either pattern, just let the fabric suggest botanical shapes to make. One thing I learned: I need some smaller needles if I want to do more detailed images.

Both still need handles. They are of B-Mix 5, and will be in the next ^6 firing, which should be soon, but my working time is so unpredictable lately that I am loathe to pick a date. In it will be the remaining ^6 conversion tests, which will allow me to publish the Glaze Notebook!


Sheri Bare said...

I need a love button. Would like to see these when they are finished.

smartcat said...

I like what you are doing with this. Inspiration comes in odd places. A fellow potter once did a series of raku pots based on her shower curtain!

Lori Buff said...

Quite a few very talented potters use fabric designs for inspiration. What covers our bodies, our furniture, and even our windows can do well covering our pots.