This piece was inspired by a ceramic bowl I saw on The Polymer Arts newsletter. I had already played a bit with the idea of removing clay from a bowl to let light through and was spurred on by the inspiration from Sage Bray. My first attempt was done this summer and I wasn't happy with the outcome and had let it sit so I could brew a solution to my discontent. My second attempt was closer but not quite the shape I had in my mind. My third and final attempt (the challenge due date was upon me) came out just right. In the end, I did manage to save the first two, turning them into pieces that I like. These last weeks of my 2014 Bowls Challenge are seeing me finishing pieces I made this year that were not quite right or not to my liking.
The final piece is a multi-baked creation. I first baked the inside shape, then the outside elements were baked later. In all, the piece went in three times. What puzzles me the most is that the clay on the outside started out white. But each time it went in the oven it came out a little darker. It didn't burn but it's like the dark copper of the inside leached through to the white. I've never heard of that happening but that is certainly what it looks like. As most of my pieces, I ended liking it that way quite a bit. The "leaves" or "blades of grass" on the outside were treated to a little crackle paint to lighten them up and give them a contrasting texture to the pod like, spongy texture of the top part. I'm quite pleased with the results and it looks very cool in the dark all lit up. I use a battery tea-light and it flickers just a little. I'd like to thank all of those who have followed this Bowls Challenge for 2014 and I still have not decided which challenge I will choose for 2015. I learned so much about my art, my capabilities, about the medium by doing this series that I want to choose another theme that will continue my education and bring me that much further to finding my own voice. Now, all we can do is notice the days getting longer! Happy Christmas everyone!