Wednesday, June 11, 2008
It's finished! After 6 weeks of drawing, building and painting, the 6th grade mural at Brandon School is completed.
It looks beautiful...colorful, vibrant, energetic...adjectives I would use to describe the students who made it.
The process was easy, well, easy as far as making ceramic murals goes! Student were given background info on Keith Haring and were shown some of his more famous pieces. Then they drew a figure on a piece of paper (5" x 6").
One week later, we met to turn our drawings into a ceramic tile. I prepped 2 5 x 7 pieces of white Laguna clay (I use a multi-string clay cutter) for each student. They laid out their drawings on TOP of one piece of clay and then traced their figures with a small dowel (a dull pencil would do fine). Using a plastic clay cutter they cut away the excess clay from their figure. Using the slip 'n score method (we call it scratch attach) the students secured their clay figures to the other tile. Using the bits and pieces of left over clay, some students added details surrounding the figures, being extra careful to ensure that its adhered properly.
The tiles were laid out to dry for 10 days. We had a hot spell in California and some of the pieces dried too quickly. This caused some curling around the edges. I could have prevented this by placing a plastic sheet over the tiles to ensure a slower drying time. But...we were running out of time!
The last time I saw the kids, their tiles had been fired and were ready for under-glazing. The kids were shown a few techniques but quickly set off to work and complete heir beautiful tiles. The first kids finished helped dip ' glaze the pieces. I used a Duncan Dipping Glaze. Makes the whole glazing process incredibly fast and simple.