August 26, 2010

Cast ceramic bowl

The first bowls made from my own plaster cast are finally through the final firing. They were not a complete success - three out of the four of them had glaze issues, one had a crack and all four had a surprisingly warped shape....they looked like they were trying to do the figure eight! They were perfectly round and smooth inside when I finished them, so I think it must be a case of the infamous clay memory at work here. Will have to do a bit of a science experiment on the next ones I make, to see if I can figure out what makes the most difference. Could it be the way I pour the liquid porcelain into or out of the mould? How long I let it drip off or how long I let it dry in the mould before taking it out? The clean-up afterwards? The porcelain type?... I think the list might get very long before I truly figure it out...

And here I thought casting would let me churn out perfect replicas, conveyer belt-style. Not quite the case, or at least not yet. And to be honest I’m quite pleased to find that there is still so much that goes into it before you get it right, so that it still feels like a 'proper' handmade object.

The duclings keep turning out ok though...

August 20, 2010

Paper birds

At work out in the North Sea at the moment, so not much making of things going on.

Today the rig was suddenly full of small birds - I counted at least five different species. Not sure why they were all here, maybe migration has started already? And maybe the wind changed and they decided to stop for a breather and a bit of sightseeing..? I was not able to take any pictures of them, but I have found some great paper bird species online that I thought I might share in their place.

This little fellow is by the British illustrator  Kate Wilson, from her series 'The little birds'. Her stuff is delightfully quirky, and crack me up on a regular basis.

This folded bird is by British illustrator/designer Rae Welch, who uses a mix of recycled and found materials.
Claire Brewster makes these intricate yet simple cut-outs of birds from old maps. I love the way they are mounted, and the shadows they cast.

And lastly this 'Southern white Face' is made by Anna-Wili Highfield, who just makes the most amazing specimens from torn paper.

August 15, 2010

Postcard swap

I have jumped in on a postcard swap, arranged by Jesse of  JezzePrints, which means that at some point I should be receiving one of these beauties!

Prints by JezzePrints

I have not been printing much lately myself, but managed to put something together to send off in return. Will not show what it was yet, so as not to spoil the surprise :-)

I love snail-mail!

Inger Waage

Continuing on the theme from the previous post, I would like to present another great Norwegian female artist from the previous century: Inger Waage. She was a designer at Stavangerflint and Figgjo Fajanse from 1953-1979. Her work was incredibly popular at the time (and still is), and I think absolutely every Norwegian home has at least one item by her. But although her work is well known, very few know the name of the designer behind it. This web page has collected a lot of information about her and some of her fellow designers at the time, and there is a fair amount of information also in English. There are also an impressive collection of pictures of her work scattered around. If you follow the top entry under 'Linker' you will find examples of almost everything she made. There is also a video showing some of her work on YouTube.

August 13, 2010

Agathe Hjelvik

I found this great hand drawn poster at a second-hand shop today, and it was love at first sight. It is signed ‘Agathe Hjelvik’, but is not dated.

The shop had no information about where it originally came from, or who the artist was. But it was one of a total of four posters by the same artist, and one of them had the year 1928 on it, so we assumed that they were all from about the same period. I have made a few inquires to try and find out more about her, but so far I have come up with nothing. It seems there are very few records of artist from this period, especially if you did commercial work, not to mention being a woman. So I'm imagining she must have been one cool chick - a creative working woman at a time where this was less common. Drawing inspiration from Art Deco, the Far East and Bauhaus...?

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