Friday, June 15, 2007

Texturing and Drying the Fish. Plus an Art Tile

OK, this is obviously not a fish. This is a small tile I have re-glazed and re-fired multiple times. I like the rich colors, kind of like a crude art tile....

Now, the fish needs some scales so you can roll up little balls of clay - a lot of them - and apply them one at a time for a lot of textured scales. Another option is to incise lines into the clay, one could also use any number of materials (netting, etc.) for an interesting body texture. Be sure to put gills and a mouth on the fish too. Then drape it over some wadded up paper towels to make the fish look lively. I use straws to punch out 2 holes near the dorsal fin; later I use leather or wire to string through the holes to hang the fish. If you are not going to hang the fish up you don't need to do that of course. Once the fish is draped leave it alone until it becomes leather hard, that is when you can carefully handle it but it is not yet dry. This is a good time to gently remove any rough or sharp edges. They may not be sharp now but when fired, those rough spots can become lethal! This is also a good time to sign your fish. Gently put the fish back on the shelf and leave it alone until it is completely dry.

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