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Everything posted by Isculpt

  1. From the album: Sculpture

    Sculpted while grieving, the roses represented the hope that someday that grief would be replaced by good memories
  2. One alternative to indented letters is a beautiful solution by Diesel Clay. When I asked how he achieved such impressive lettering, he generously provided this response: "Because i was making so many of those mugs, I went to a sign shop that has a plotter and had them cut me a stencil of the phrase out of Mylar. Then I took clay body slip and pushed it through the back side of the stencil onto strips of newsprint. Let the letters set up a minute or two, and then apply the strip to the soft leather hard pot. Don't remove the paper until the letters are fully set up. Best to leave it on until it falls off, in fact." Pretty darned clever, huh? Jayne
  3. I use metal lettering stamps produced by Chip Art for the scrapbooking industry. They come in a variety of typefaces, sizes, and upper and lower case letters. After I stamp into the slightly leatherhard clay, I bisque the piece and then apply a wash of underglaze (or for a slightly metallic look, I use the copper color of Mayco's "Stoneware Wash"). I apply either underglaze or Mayco glaze diluted 1:1 with water to keep it from dyeing the surface of the piece too much. I then scrub it off with a generously wetted sponge, which leaves the color in the crevices formed by the letters. Be aware that unless you apply a resist, the washes will remain in all crevices in the piece. The stamps can be ordered from Amazon. (search for "CHIP Art letter stamps by Melody Ross") Be aware that not all packages come with the metal shaft (which makes stamping easier). It isn't necessary to use the shaft, however. In the images attached, I've used two different sets of stamps on the bust with the Emily Dickinson quote "hope is the thing with feathers" -- the small letters are "chickadee" and the slightly larger letters are "sparrow", both of which are lower case. On the bust with the tree branches and the blindfolded bust with the Poe quote ("dream within a dream.") , I've just used the "sparrow" lower case letters, which are about 1/4". There is a larger, more formal 1/2" letter called "Bluebird" which comes in lower and upper case. The Amazon link for the Bluebird lettering is : http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003TIZM26/ref=pd_luc_rh_sim_01_03_t_lh?ie=UTF8&psc=1. Since my work isn't functional, I usually fire the piece and then use thinned underglaze which doesn't obscure the darkened letters. If I wanted to apply a colored glaze, I would either apply a clear glaze over the letters, wiping away the excess around the letters before applying glaze OR I would apply a resist over the letters and wipe away the excess before applying glaze. I would fire once again at that point. The benefit of using the Mayco Stoneware Wash is that it is a glaze and needs no further protection. Jayne
  4. Thanks for the insights. Sounds like I'm gonna want both! Jayne
  5. I've just purchased a used extruder, although I'm not sure to what use I will put it! At the moment, Amazon books is offering 30% off of any one book and I'm trying to choose an extruder book. I see "The Extruder Book" by Daryl Baird 2012 "Ceramic Extruding: Inspiration and Technique" by Tom & Jean Latka "Extruded Ceramics - Techniques* Projects* Inspirations* by Diana Pancioli from Lark Books Any suggestion appreciated.... Jayne
  6. I'm impressed by the lettering!! How do you do that??
  7. No one has responded to the question of whether one has to be a licensed or registered business to get and use a Square card reader. No, you do not. Go to Square.com, sign up, provide a checking account number so they can automatically deposit the funds (less their commission) in your account, and they will send a free card reader. Voila! You're ready to take credit cards. You are supposed to collect the appropriate sales tax for the site where the sale is made, so even if you live in South Carolina, for example, if you do a craft show in North Carolina you will need to get a tax number from that state. You can do that online at the state's Dept of Revenue website. Some states may charge a fee, but I've never encountered one. The Square is ridiculously easy to use and to keep records with - you can even use it to keep track of your non-credit purchases. To my knowledge, there is no daily limit on the sales made with a Square. I do know that I've taken $3500 in charges on the Square at a six hour show with no problem. There is no monthly fee with a 2.69% commission on each sale. I recently applied for a Payanywhere card reader (because they offered the first 2000 in sales commission-free) and they have different requirements if you choose to call yourself a business or an individual. Unlike the Square, they took 24 hrs to approve me and then set ridiculous limits of $20 per sale and $100 per day! Twenty-five years ago you could sell through craft shows without accepting credit cards, but I suspect it's nearly impossible now. My items range from $70 to $1000, and 90% of purchases are made with credit cards. However, if you sell $5 items, I'm sure that percentage would change. Jayne
  8. Leeu, thanks for sharing your story. It's a powerful reminder that it is easy to get stuck in a negative place filled with a soundtrack of all the reasons we CAN'T do something and all the ways that life has cheated us. Alternatively we can make a determined effort to focus on the positive (ten fingers and toes is as good a place to start as any!) and to recognize that most of us have the power to create the life we want. Making art is such a joy that we naturally want the world to adapt to us so that we can keep doing it, but it just doesn't work that way. Like it or not, for most people to create art, they have to accept that there is a cost -- whether it's living on the financial edge or working a part time job to help pay the bills or adapting their work to suit the market or any of a zillion ways that life extracts the toll. We aren't entitled to make art; it is a right that we have to earn through talent, hard work and sacrifice. It is hard to break the negative soundtrack that afflicts many of us and even harder to create a new one, but it's absolutely necessary if you want to move on to a better place. What is the saying -- "the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results". If something isn't working, it's time to change what you're doing, how you're doing it or where you're doing it. The 26 words that you put in boldface type are enough to change a life, as you have proven with your own. Thanks again for caring enough to share a painful tale in order to help Guneapotter (and probably many others) through a rough patch.
  9. Mark, the sculptures did warp while drying, but I sanded the bottoms before bisquing until everything was perfect. Then they came out of the kiln a mess! I found that you're right about cone 5 -- it is a pain to sand, although I had some successes. Thanks MMB for the mention of the Diamond blades. I purchased my angle grinder from Harbor Freight - a favorite fun store where I find all kinds of great things for the studio. Big Lou, it's possible that I'm not drying the work slowly enough. I do dry them on a rack and I candle them for a long time (8-12 hours) before using the slow bisque setting on my kiln, and I frequently use sand. I'll try compressing better the clay slabs that I use for bottoms. And I don't know what "plucking" is!! Jayne
  10. Thanks, Mark. This is High water Raku clay fired to cone 5 (it has a firing range of 06-6). Today I bought some expensive "ceramic sanding belts“ which are supposed to be stronger and last longer. The"ceramic" has nothing to do with ceramics as we know it, just a stronger product. I've looked at local hardware stores and Michaels Crafts for those clear rubber bumpers but finally found them at Hobby Lobby. Maybe between 40 grit paper and bumpers, I'll make it to the show! Any guesses as to why the work is suddenly warping? It has warped as low as cone 1 this time out. Jayne
  11. For reasons I don't understand, most of the 40 sculptures I've made in the past few months (that are headed for a craft show in less than a week!!) are warped. I'll worry about the "why" later, but right now I need to figure out "how" to sand the bottoms to take out the slight warpage. I have a belt sander that I can flip upside down; will that do the job with 80 grit belts? Or is my booth gonna be full of rockin' sculptures??? Jayne
  12. Good point, Chris. You may have just saved me from having to pay for someone's priceless antique.
  13. Thank you both. Beth, now I understand the 'why' of the seemingly arbitrary "fire to 04 bisque". I was going to fire the 05 glaze along with a bisque load with no consideration of the effect of organic matter burning out, so your tip regarding that got my attention. Chris, next time I will fire inside and out at the same time! Can water-tightness be achieved simply by firing to vitrification or is a glaze required? Or does that vary according to clay used? Is there a rule of thumb that refiring glazed work to a lower temperature is less likely to have drastic effect on the existing glaze than firing a piece that was glazed at, say cone 5 all the way up to cone 5 again? Or are there no rules of thumb?! And finally, can you recommend a book about this subject? I will never, at this stage of my life and with limited need for glazes, create my own glaze. So I don't need a book that goes into that aspect of glazing..... Jayne
  14. I've read on CAD of potters firing their clay to mid-range maturity, and then applying a low-firing glaze and firing again. My raku clay has a firing range of cone 2-6, so I bisqued my sculpture to cone 05, then fired to cone 5 with Potter's Choice cone 5 glaze applied. Now I want to glaze the interior of the sculpture with another lower-firing glaze, but I've noticed that all the low-firing 05 glazes I have on hand have the following instructions: "Apply to matured cone 04 bisque". What do they mean by "matured 04 bisque"? Can I not apply them to a clay that has been fired higher than 04? I'm assuming that I don't want to use another cone 5 glaze, since I suppose it would affect the previously-applied glaze? I've made some vases and glazed their exteriors, but need to glaze interiors to water-proof them, so any advice on how to proceed would be appreciated. Jayne
  15. Thank you, Wyndham. I took a one-day workshop on Potter's Choice glazes, but no one mentioned different firing schedules! I will check with them, and that's a great idea about putting test tiles in with each firing. It never would have occurred to me to constantly test the same glazes! Jayne
  16. I use underglazes on my sculptures, and I have no experience with glazes so this is a total newbie question. I bought some Potters Choice glazes and combined the colors as suggested in the catalog (i.e. two coats of one color followed by two coats of another). I made test tiles, fired to cone 5, and loved the colors and reduction effects the glazes produced. But I've just glazed some sculptures and the colors are noticeably different from the test tiles. I can live with the colors, but it made me wonder: Can you apply glaze over a fired glaze? If so, what happens to the original glaze coats when I fire the pieces up to cone 5 again? Jayne
  17. Thanks for the E6000 suggestion. Clear would definitely work better for this purpose. Is it available at hardware stores or is it a specialty item?
  18. Thanks, both of you. I was afraid I'd be told that NOTHING would adhere glazed surface to glazed surface. I'm surprised and happy to hear otherwise! Jayne
  19. I have seen several glues recommended here, but always for gluing a broken handle on, or something that doesn't involve a sealed, glazed surface. I'd like to glue some crushed gemstone onto a glazed surface. Is there a glue that will attach something to a glazed surface? Jayne
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