Seaweed pinch pot

Seaweed pinch pot

Monday, 7 April 2014

Ann Ferguson landscape workshop

Enjoying getting reacquainted with a well known landscape.

As a diversion from the pot-making that I've been so preoccupied with for the past two years, I did a workshop called 'The Contoured Landscape' with Ann Ferguson back in February (hosted by Northcote Pottery). Ann makes beautiful miniature worlds in clay. I don't think she has a webpage or blog but there are some great images of her work in this Craft Victoria blog entry which profiles an exhibition she had a few years ago.

My creation in the workshop was a little landscape based on the main features of Hobart. I made it with my kids in mind, especially my daughter, who spent her first three and a half years in Hobart and still has very fond memories of it. I'm happy to report she loves is! She loves putting a little house where ours would be in the landscape and figuring out where her friends houses would be. I made it so that the landscape contours are not fused, so the hills can also be moved if play calls for it! It's a fun and simple process - next time I'll get he kids into the making process, not just the playing at the end.

My three year old also enjoyed it - his hand here photographed by his big sister!
The clay we used was Feeneys Red Raku and Feeneys Buff Raku (they allow most features to be solid rather than hollow at this scale). I've only had this work bisque fired but am thinking a higher firing might be worth it just for bringing out the flecks in the Buff Raku.

Was really great to do something different, but now I'm back to the pots (and loving it).

And today I happened to notice this blog reached 2222 views - if only this was my 22nd post that would be perfect, but alas it is my 21st!


6 comments:

  1. What a delightful idea. I reckon my 4 and 7 yr old might give our neighbourhood a good in air drying clay. I love how the features can be moved and rearranged, that the houses are 'real' and can be held in the hand.

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    1. Hi needleandspindle. Yes, I reckon it would be a great project for kids with air drying clay! Then you could probably just paint the finished pieces with normal paints if colours are wanted. The method that Ann teaches involves cutting the shapes from partially dried slabs with a BBQ scraper or other fine-edged tool. With the clay being left to 'firm up' first it can be carved and tapped into shape nicely but is not super malleable. Not sure about using this method with air-drying clay though because I guess it's a risk that the clay would get too hard (?)...I'm sure you and the kids will find a way. Good luck!

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  2. Such a great 'toy'. And connection to a past home. Hey Nina - I really want to buy one of your beautiful mugs. Are they for sale??

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    1. oooh - yes they are! I'd love to sell you one - which did you have in mind? Pretty much all my wheel work is for sale (and most of the other pieces too) and I've just been pondering how to start getting it out there for sale more. I think I'm not consistent enough yet for shops. I'll definitely be doing Made n' Thorbury on May 10, but am trying to decide where else. And then there is the Etsy option which I'm also thinking about starting up (any advice on that one? I might just put a few things up and see how it goes). Anyway - direct sales are the best! Let me know what you're after so I can put it aside.

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  3. I love those mugs from your previous post. Or a future one if they're already spoken for!

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    1. I can definitely save you one of those. Don't know if you saw them in at NP - they are quite small as mugs go, and I do plan to make some larger ones. I'll bring one with me next opportunity and you can see if it's big enough for your hot beverage needs.

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