Wednesday 24 October 2012

Back to the Ceramics class

Ceramics class resumed last night:

Once again, I arrived absolutely mentally exhausted. Yes these craft sessions are potentially therapeutic and relaxing but one also has to concentrate and do a fair degree of thinking.

A reminder of what I'm doing and trying to do: basically, build an HO scale city building for my HO scale French model railway.

What I'm aiming at.


Card model and rolled out walls.
Last night I wanted to add some relief to the walls or "jutty-out" bits as I prefer to call them. The problem is that the walls which were made some weeks ago, despite being covered with cloth and polythene sheets in between sessions, are slowly drying out and thus contracting.
Any clay additions must be at the same level of dryness otherwise they will shrink at a different rate from the clay wall to which they are attached and probably crack.
Therefore, before I could really carve out the additional jutty-out bits from a new lump of clay, I had to hasten their drying with  a hair-drier.

Jutty-out bits.
 One sticks the additional strips of clay to the walls with "slip".

Slip is basically liquid clay. One makes it by breaking up dried bits of clay into a container of water where they dissolve VERY SLOWLY and only after much stirring. Then one paints the slip onto both sides of the pieces one's wanting to stick together.

Breaking up a lump of dried clay


The jutty-out bits will form a kind of balcony/balustrade/cornice
It doesn't seem much to have achieved in a 3 hour class but, honestly, I was so tired that the only task I felt up to doing was the stirring.
Last night's dinner:
Pie and beans washed down with pint of milk.
Ernest Chausson: String Quartet in Cm.
Very tired when I got home so read some more of Earthly Powers and listened to the following:
Tango class resumes this evening:
As ever, I'm nervous as anything and question why I'm doing it in the first place.

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