Now I remember why I don't do large (for me) animals. They're a complete b#tch to do. I start with a slab of clay over a bowl that is approximately to shape and size of the shell. It has to be soft enough to drape easily but dry enough to hold its shape. The first step of drying has to be watched carefully as the whole thing will crack if it dries to much. Sometimes I take it off the form and place a smaller bowl under the curve. Once the clay has set up enough I reverse it into a shallow bowl lined with several layers of a towel. I rough in the head, legs and tail and wait for it to set up a bit. The hardest part is finding the patience to let it set properly. I've been going out to work in the yard in short bursts. I set a timer so I won't lose track of what is going on with drying. Once it's set up enough I add the bottom shell and make sure it's well attached all around.
I turned it right side up so I could work on the feet and head with eyes. Later I will work on the bottom and post a photo of it. The main thing is go slowly without losing the gesture of the turtle.
Below is a photo of the way not to do it. I started building one the inside of the bowl.....well, it has been a while since I've done one of these. Needless to say, it was a disaster.....and I couldn't find my notes on making a turtle. As I started, it didn't feel right......so I broke it down and started over, more successfully this time. Sometimes the memory is in our hands not our brains.
Below is a long ago calamari platter that I made on commission. I found it when I was cleaning some unused shelves. A nice little surprise to put out as a bird bath. Actually this is a glaze failure. I made two and fortunately the octopus was defined and clear on the second one. For more thoughts on the perils of commissions read Gary's post for today. He sums it up very nicely.
Now if a customer wants something, if it's at all feasible, I make a bunch of stuff and invite the customer to have first choice.
Does anyone out there do commissions? If you do, what are your criteria for accepting and how do your arrive at a price?
This post will also be over on Mud Colony. Everyone should click the link and see what is happening world wide in clay.
It looks like a real summer week end ahead. I doesn't seem possible that we are halfway though August.
Enjoy the sun, moon and stars. As always, thanks for stopping by...........*s*