Saturday, February 27, 2010

Noticing the small stuff

I like taking photos of the small things.  The patterns in nature.  These photo are hung in a grid on my wall.  I like rearranging them and playing with the different  combinations of colour, pattern and form.
Left to right top row-frangipani, Grasses @Raglan,Jellyfish@ Raglan
Left to right middle row-Seaweed@Raglan, Bunny tails@Raglan, Plant flower @Sydney
Left to right bottom row-grasses@Raglan, Bark@Raglan, Bunny tails @Raglan another view.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Short circuit

Recently on a visit to Dale Copeland, she gave me heaps of circuit boards from calculators and telephones.  I have been mucking about playing with little things from my printers tray on the wall and using them with the circuits boards. It is fascinating putting previously unrelated objects together.  It always throws up interesting thoughts and ideas to ponder on.
This one is about memories... imagine what is stored in the memory banks of this circuit board!  But much like what happens to us in old age... it is hard (harder) to access those/these memories now.

The bits mean to me/prompts these questions-

The Bobbin.  From an old sewing box from my Nana.  Sewing machines sew straight and true. Do we get more black and white about issues as we get older?  Will a straight line like Hansel and Gretel help us find out way home?

The belt buckle.  From a elderly neighbour when she passed away.  Belt buckles remind me of being tidy and safe... tucked in... but can they help us be 'safe' and valued in our old age.  Did it help my neighbour?  She was in her 90's with no children.  Her family bundled up all her stuff and it was discarded into a skip.

The Kewpie doll.  My Nana loved Kewpie dolls.  Without knowing this my daughter when she was 8 brought one as a gift for me from iko iko Wellington. I like the generational link.

The compass.  Hopefully we find our way in life.  Sometimes we go way off track.  What helps us get back on the track again?

The Lamb.  Like a lamb to the slaughter. Innocence lost.  As we age do we become more cynical?  Do we lose that excitement about the new... do we lose our vitality?  Do we have to as we age?  Is it a nature vs nurture question?  The lamb was part of a collection that I had on my window sill when I was very little.  My great grandmother gave them to me...a few at a time... all sorts of animals.  I still have one kitten, a pig and this lamb.

The hand.  From an old doll.  Hopefully showing me the way.

The faces.  My Nana had a thing about reusing stuff... more of a generational thing, being around from those post war years.  She made all sorts of stuff into stuff.  My favourite were her dehydrated apples carved as head shapes and her faces from stockings which she put in a jar to look like little trapped people.  These three faces are from one of those jars... watching and judging... always judging.

The Key.  Fairly obvious.

Funny bunnies

A group of laughing bunnies.  This time of the year, coming into Easter, I find myself surrounded by foil wrapped bunnies and it gets me wondering about the 'stories' we tell our kids.  On one level it is nice to believe in some sense of 'magic' in the world...and on another level it is slightly 'creepy' that we have the Easter Bunny, Tooth fairy and Santa.  I can visualize being in a room surrounded by these mocking surreal bunnies.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Two ceramic bowls

Two bowls from the kiln recently.  The lime green parts didn't photograph too well.  But  I really enjoyed making these two little babies. I discovered you don't twist the legs and tentacles to make them twisted...  you cut them and sort of carve them to give the illusion of being twisted.  Tricky!

Big yellow dog

I really like the work of Jim Cooper.  I made this dog last term.  It was a logistical nightmare to make... due to having to be in pieces and wait for the leather hard stage to join the bits.... and then the electrician moved him and a leg snapped off.  Then I had to move him to the kiln at my ceramics class.  I would so much love a kiln at home... and am frustrated by this at the moment.  We are looking at getting one once we move.. maybe.  Currently my work has to be fired with all the other students in my pottery class.  They are doing mostly glaze work.  The kiln has to go to the temperature that suits that suits everyone in the glazing.  The result of this is that often my underglaze colours burn out and are less intense.  My tutor and I have discussed this.  I could do a kiln load of my own work that fires to the temperature that suits what I am using.  The downside will be waiting a long time for my work to come back..which slows down the discovery and learning from my mistakes.  As by the time the work gets back I wold have made a whole heap more stuff.  Also the other problem is transporting fragile' bone dry' work to the kiln. I learnt alot from doing this dog.  In the coming term I will attempt him again...hopefully with more success!  I did experiment with oven heat set ceramic paint on him AFTER glazing which heat sets in the oven...the darker yellow on him is that stuff.  I have some  old plates which I have also been experimenting on with the same paint.

Mouse man

Still loving 're-inventing' soft toys that I have found at second hand shops.  I cut them up and rearrange them... often giving them new faces as well.  I like how they can be injected with new and quirky personalities.... like reincarnation!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Flying Ducks and Rabbits

I have always liked those ceramic flying ducks on the wall.  While having a bit of a studio clean out, I decided to play around with 'cut outs' of MDF and retro wall papers.  I had great fun blue-tacking them in groups and different formations around the house.  I like the rabbits best.