Orion Art at White Dog Studio

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Sunday, May 2, 2010

For the love and mystery of Birds.

What started as a demo for a small face sculpture for my Ceramics One students evolved into this.  It is part self portrait, not the bird part.  I put the fingers and the crow on the piece to show the students ideas for adding other "stuff" to a face.  I chose a crow because of the crows flying around outside the ceramics room window and because of my post in March about Crows. 

The front of the face cracked off in the bisque fire.  A fine example to the students of "do what I say, not do what I do"!  I'm always cautioning them about hatching and slipping their work well and letting pieces dry thoroughly before we fire them.
But, as it turns out I like the cracked face and so did the students. A lesson learned in allowing mistakes/accidents to work for you.

For the assignment students were to integrate the front and back of the sculpture by making a connection with words, poetry, lyrics, a quote or any other way they could think of.  This quote is from a book called The Poets Guide to the Birds, edited by Judith Ketchen and Ted Kooser.


  1. Wow! This takes bird-watching to a new level.

    I love it. The mischievous smile, the crack, the poem--what a great way to think of birds.

    I have Leonard Baskin's "Torment" hanging in my house; same subjects--human and raven (or crow); a dark favorite. Yours is an exciting, uplifting piece. Fantastic!!!

  2. I echo (as I often do here) Hallie and would add...create a series please!! I could really see this first piece evolving and moving through different emotions and the ways in which ravens and crows connect to those feelings.
    very exciting 'save' on the cracking too.

  3. I returned for another look and thought I'd mention what the child in me sees. The top photograph reminds me of bugs on a windshield. I think of a person running so fast that a bird is splattered against the forehead. This piece delights the child-me and the adult-me.

    Like Merci I'd like to see more.

  4. Hallie and Merci...
    I'd like to do a series, some images are percolating. Maybe I'll bring some hunks of clay home for the summer. I can see some paintings too, there is certainly enough dream/bird fodder to work with.
    Hallie, I love the child in you, making me stop to laugh! Also, you being a sculptor, I appreciate your comments. I looked up the Leonard Baskin's piece. I really like it.