Bunnies and Pottery

Last Thursday was an excellent day! Well other than the fact that I am sick now.

Early in the morning I went off to school, and I have to walk ten minutes from where I park everyday, and then ten minutes back. Its not terrible, but it is quite a change from high school, I feel like I am outside all the time now!  Usually I love my 20 minute walk, I wear all the proper clothes for the weather and I am a camper so I am pretty skilled in that department.

But Thursday was wet, like REALLY wet I wore my bright yellow down to the knee rain coat and by the end of the walk my umbrella was turned  inside out and my pants from the knees down where absolutely glued to my legs they where so wet.

Then I threw some pottery on the wheel for three hours,  our homework assignment was to make three cylinder’s on the wheel, I made 2 bowls and 7 cups, one that was a little more of a decoration than a drinking glass. 

I am so excited about them they look so professional!!  Friday morning I made 3 more bowls, a cup and a vase, and I was the only one in the class to make a vase. 

But back to Thursday because it was so excellent, mostly. I walked back to my car to go home for a little bit before my next class and when I went outside it was snowing! Yes I am so ready for snow, however I was dressed for a rainy warm-ish day. My pant legs turned to ice and I had no sweater on under my raincoat.

I payed for parking when I returned back to the school for my 1:00 class which makes my walk under a minute to get inside the warm dry college. Between my 1:00 History tutorial and my 5:00 drawing class, the woman who sold me the 3 angora rabbits came over to help me shear them for my first time. It was great and I got much more fiber than I even expected which was a pleasant surprise.

So now I am spinning angora mixed together with silk, I hope to do 2 ply and then knit it into mittens. My first hand-raised, hand-spun, hand-knit project.

Ugh I am so sick though! sniffle sniffle.

I don’t really have classes next week just a meet-the-teacher-for-10-minutes-and-chat-about-your-progress type thing. But my boyfriend is in University exams all week! What will I do all day by myself !

Weave a blanket I suppose…. by the way, the warp is all made, but my mom was having a Christmas party so things had to stay neat and tidy, and I didn’t want to start setting up my loom. Though I am sure her guests would have loved to ask questions and see some of the progress.

Not everyone has a loom in there living room you know.

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Pottery class

Yesterday I had my third last pottery class and our stuff that we put glazes and oxides on last week has all been fired. Its exciting to see the end result, and to my and every ones surprise we all like the oxides much better. The glazed products ended up looking quite “Clay cafe” style. Here is a picture of the glaze and here is my favorite piece my vessel.
and a side view, I was the only one who made a cover
and this week my homework assignment is to spend three hours in the pottery class room practicing throwing on the wheel I am very excited, I hope I will get the hand of it after three hours!

Here it goes the blanket project

I have woven a blanket before but I used expensive and bulky weight yarns, this time I am going to be weaving something a little finer, using an acrylic 2 ply beige in my warp (the strings that go length wise on the loom) and I am going to be using three colours of one ply Briggs & little (pure wool) for my weft. The blanket is going to match all of the furniture in my living room so I am very excited.

I wanted to keep the material cost low on this one, I think its pretty important if I want to make sales, that I have a lot of variety in my prices expensive yarns and hand spun but also wool and acrylic.

I love weaving wool and acrylic together, the acrylic makes the end product soft, but the wool makes it warm and using real fiber is important (local fiber is even better!) 

So my plan for this blanket

I want it to be 45 inches wide x 8 strings per inch = 360 (Holy molly!)

and 60 inches long +26 for loom waste (The standard is 30 inches but I never waste that much and then my products come out too long)

and it is going to be all beige, well that’s easy.

I bet this wont take me more than 2 episodes of America’s next top model!

I will take some pictures when I am finished and then I will plot out my weaving pattern… I m thinking diamonds!

Thanks for reading!

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Colour in Weaving

Optical mixing in weaving is so important, as weavers we always have to carefully plan how our warp and weft colours are going to mingle to get the result we want. Here are a few examples of the colour mistakes and lessons I have learned in my last two and a half years of weaving.

If I want to see more of the weft or the warp I can change my designs to be weft faced or warp faced simply by spacing the warp strings out either closer together or further apart. How this was learned; I made a two scarf long warp and put it on my loom earlier this fall and the first one I made 10 inches wide was very loose and flowy but the colours in my warp didn’t show up as much as I hoped. When I finished that scarf and started the next one I took the strings out of the reed and put them closer together, this scarf came out 6 inches wide and was exactly the result I had been hoping for.

If I where to weave two compliments together in a plain weave the colours would mesh together from far away and probably look gross. But if I put a blue diamonds pattern over an orange warp, the results would be very appealing. My first attempt at a diamond pattern I had purple blue and pink in the warp and I used bright sea green for the weft. First I tried it in plain weave and it was disgusting! I hated it so much I actually unwove my 7 inches of weaving and restrung the whole scarf on the loom.

One time I wove a scarf that had three colours in it; a hot pink, a baby blue and a gray, and the whole scarf came out completely purple! Even though there was no purple in the woven product!  Another experience I had like that was with Jackie (the technician for the textiles department last year) she had me make a warp that was red, light pink and purple, I didn’t understand it was a gross combination I would never wear those colours all together in an outfit so how in the world would they look good on a scarf? The scarf that emerged from the loom was gorgeous a beautifully textured hot pink. I was so surprised because I had no colour study background then and I just didn’t understand how the change happened. Being mostly self-taught I have had to make mistakes a long the way but colour study class has certainly helped my understanding. This has been a great semester, I am halfway to getting a foundation Visual Arts Diploma!

Yarn, and barn.

Yesterday my mom and I took a road trip (45 minutes) to Briggs & Little, we bought 140$ worth of yarn and needles. Most of the skeins where about 1.50$ and the needles where 2.50$. We bought A LOT of yarn.

I have decided that over my Christmas break I am going to make a project for myself and weave a blanket, filling my entire loom. so about 45 in wide. It will just be a throw of course, but because I am using one ply wool its going to be pretty slow weaving.

These are the colours I was thinking for the weft.

 

Another thing my mom and I did today other then drool over our new yarn was clean out the chicken coop/ bunny barn. Despite it being the dead of winter just a few days ago today it was fall again. Most of the snow has melted and all I had to wear was a sweater instead of my parka. We even turned all the heat lamps off in the coop! So three hours later the hay is replenished everything is mostly clean and poop free. The worm farm has plenty to eat.

and now I think its time for a little cat nap. 

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My productive morning

So I sat down at the little red table and started and finished a portion of my Colour Study project.

For the year end project we have to do a presentation or written paper on something to do with colour. I have known about this year end project for a while but I didn’t have a rubric or any real guidelines so I didn’t want to get started.

I wanted to weave something. After learning about optical mixing and watching a documentary on Chuck Close I knew that I wanted to weave something similar to a multiplication table with colour.

Yellow, green, blue, violet, red, orange, in the warp and then have the same colours going back across. However now that we have been given the project I realize I don’t have enough time to get that done. So I went to the teacher and I asked if I could do a painting of what the finished product would look like and do all of the calculations as if I was going to weave it. She said that would be great. The only thing is that now after I finished the painting I know that the calculations won’t be hard to do, what more can I put into this project to make it better?

I mean at first I was willing to put in at least 8 hours to weave that, now I finished the painting in about two or three hours. What more could I do?

I like it!

Something I have been working on…

Oh and this is just something I have been working on for drawing class, finally we are getting into shading and working in our sketchbooks.

The only thing is that my dark shades are not nearly as dark as the

ones from the magazine. So I may have to fix it up a little bit.

I made two coil pots the other day for pottery, and they have been bisqued.

I just hope that after I put a glaze on them they become more like drinking glasses

or bowls, than really small flower pots.

And this is my shelf in the pottery class, I also made a vessel it didn’t turn out

nearly as awesome as I would have liked. I was the only one who made a cover in

my class and the cover on just fits!!

I also have made two masks and they are on this shelf but you can’t see them

from this shot.

Boy does it ever smell like snow outside today!! This is a picture from just a week or two

ago, but today there is a warning for 20 cm! I wonder if I should make the effort to

get dressed up in all of my snow gear and go to the college and work on my pottery or not.

hmmm…

 

What I love about Art

After my last project (the dots in the circles) I realized that I am not only a fiber artist but I am a designer too. A Designer of art, and

that is something that I am very pleased to take away from my first semester at the Craft College.

We where assigned a project in 2D Design class to make a piece that looks like music, our medium to do it in was not defined (I don’t have a picture of my finished product right now, and it is currently being marked) But the things that people came back with where just extraordinary!! I have not learned any new skills physically in that class, other than patients from gluing individual magazine letter to make a scene. But now I can apply the DESIGN skills I have learned to any medium I already know!

I am not a great painter, but I saw this in my head and decided to go for it, and after finishing it I realize I do need to stay away from using paint on anything but abstract (like really abstract) designs. But it turned out fine.  I use to make artist trading cards.

I think I need to make some more I really enjoyed it.

Mixed media is great, paint, cut, glue, stamp, write!

Bedazzle! tinny little master pieces.

I went to Micheal’s  and I bought some canvas,

tiny flat ones, and the real deal canvas’s.

What I love about art is, the colours,  the texture and the size.  Realism is not as  important to me.  But how it makes me feel.

Ahh zee finished product!

20111117-223403.jpg

Here it is, not due for another two weeks but it it complete! It looks exactly like I imagined! I have the materials maybe I should make something else similar. I love mixed media projects, I have missed them. I use to make artist trading cards all the time… Hmm independent project idea?

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Je suis une artiste!

Yesterday in 2D Design we where assigned our final project (which will not be due until about three weeks from now) but after she explained I was so excited that I might be done the whole thing by tomorrow.

So the assignment:

Design a motif, have it repeat at least 20 times with small variations each time and then have an  large anomaly that grabs attention.

My first thoughts where oh like an Escher! I thought maybe I could have butterfly wings turning into ears or something with a large face in the middle. But then I thought no, I want this to be abstract and beautiful instead of pictorial. I am using the medium acrylic paint, gouch splattered, and polymer clay as a eye catching 3D addition to my painting.

I made the polymer clay pieces this morning, and I splattered paint on plain field paper last night.

These are after they have been cooked. And once the whole thing is done

it will look like this

There is going to be three more little circles at the botom.

Then I painted the whole canvas black, even the outside edges, it will be

one of those pictures that don’t need a frame.

It is going to be colorful, shiny and 3D I am very excited for the finished product.

To bad next class I will have 3 hours to do nothing because I will be done my finale

project.

When inspiration comes you have to take it!

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