Finding meaningful gifts in stores is a struggle. Things usually seem too generic or are too expensive, and a cooler version of almost anything is awaiting creation back home with … Continue reading Christmas Crafting
These bookends were created for my third and final project in a sculpture class I attended last spring.
I learned to apply the old adage “draw what you see, not what you know” to three dimensions. We all know that a typical face is composed of a nose, mouth, eyes, and cheekbones, but until I actually looked around at the faces of my classmates for guidance, I hadn’t truly looked at each of those components individually, or in relation to one another in any detail. I found the experience very eye opening (though apparently the bookend face did not)!
“What is art but a way of seeing?” – Saul Bellow
This relief sculpture was my second project for last winter’s sculpture class. My favourite part of the process was repeatedly slamming the clay onto the workbench to evict any air pockets that would expand in the kiln and cause mini explosions. I rolled out the resulting compact slab into an organic shape, and begun carving away at the horizon and the distinct cracks and fissures of each rock.
Above the Arctic Circle is a magical place. The sky seems to open up over the tundra and it feels as if you are literally on the top of the world.
My family and I ventured up to the Arctic one summer, living out of a motorhome and stopping to swim in every lake we came to. Many of these beautifully inviting lakes were in fact stocked with icy cold water that had been frozen in glaciers mere hours before swallowing our cannonballs; needless to say we spent much of our lake time shivering and skipping stones on shore. The trip created many special memories that are now securely lodged in my brain, highlighted by lots of family pursuits (such as building our own inukshuks), and a real, live wolf sighting!
I love the contrast between the edgy, sharp rocks and the smooth, flowing sky – the sturdy earthbound structure under the expansive, ever transforming heavens.
I am considering glazing this piece…so perhaps it is a work in progress?
This past summer my roommate and I thoroughly took advantage of the numerous white boards we had around the house. In addition to diligently updating a board with daily inspirational quotes/pictures (stay tuned for a “Diurnal Delights” post coming soon), and creating a leader board with which we followed the progress of our training partner Damian Warner in the decathlon at the Olympics, we used a couple of giant boards, including this one, as dining room decor.
I relished in experimenting with the various markers and waxy white board crayons we had on hand, and I chose to replicate the following picture taken by another training partner and brilliant photographer, Mark Scherle. The idea of a single, distinct focal point standing out in an image intrigues me a great deal. In hindsight, I think the black outline of the background flowers detracts from the blurriness that I was trying to emulate, but I’m still pleased with the overall image. A couple of months later this board remains on display in the dining room, though this is largely because the crayons are so hard to erase!
Culture Days is a nation-wide movement aimed at engaging Canadians in the arts and cultural life of their communities. Every September, studios and venues across the country open their doors and offer fun (and free!) opportunities to explore both your community, and your talents.
A friend and I visited a few interesting venues, including Fired Up! Glass Arts, where we created custom glass pieces by carefully placing small shards of glass on transparent tiles, which meld together once fired in a kiln. I came up with a wolf face (of course) while Damian crafted an intense tiger (also no surprise). Ironically, the brown bits of glass I used for the nose of the wolf closely resembles chocolate (my favourite). The raised texture of the bigger bits of glass really catch my eye!
Keep an eye out for Culture Days festivities next September.
Clay and shoe polish (2012)
I attended a very fun sculpture class at ArtVenture this past spring, and this was the first of the three projects I completed. It involved laying out an image in a tile frame, then slowly filling it in from behind, ensuring no air was trapped in the inch or so of clay. I dramatized the topography by adding layers around the snout and eyebrows and carving rifts around the eyes, before adding a few fine details and a sparse coat of shoe polish.
This class was my first art course outside of middle/junior high school, and it was fantastic to learn new techniques and bounce ideas off of others who were similarly focused. Art is fun with friends!