Monday, November 28, 2016

Clay 3 : Dragons

Week Two of our Clay 3 After school workshop. This week's focus was a favorite among students, Dragons.

Materials Needed
Sketchbooks and pencils
Low fire white clay
Clay tools
Canvas mats for surface working
Cardboard bats for storing work

1. We began this week's lesson by looking at dragon sculpture from around the world, and discussing size, materials used, dragon lore and more. Students spent a few minutes drafting ideas in their sketchbooks, considering different body shapes, surface textures,  and added features like fire.

2. I gave students two pieces of clay, one for the dragon, and one for a base of some kind.  They formed a rock or platform of some type to set their dragon on.

3. Several students had observed that many of the dragons had serpentine body shapes, so we began our sculptures with thick, snakelike bodies, then adding legs, tails, wings and other body features. All bits were attached securely using the slip and score method. 

4. Tools were used in different ways to create surface texture like those found on scales, fur, wings, claws, etc. We considered the expressive features we'd add to the faces to indicate qualities of our dragons' temperaments. 

5. Students were reminded to turn the sculptures around and observe all sides, checking for securely attached parts and evenly decorated surfaces.

6. We looked over the finished pieces and briefly discussed the body shapes used, the decorative features, use of materials, and dragon personalities expressed in facial features.

7. Dragons are set aside to dry and will be fired and later glazed.


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