From Clay She Molded an Image of Herself

This was actually after the second session. I forgot to take a photo of the first session.

The past four weeks I have been taking a sculpturing class from Michelle Karam.  For twenty years Michelle has been operating a ceramics studio.  This is the first time I got the opportunity to take her class.

She is teaching head sculpting.  Using her technique, in 8 sessions, we have gone from a figure that resembled a grey alien to a completed project.  She taught an amazing method to make the eyes.

Session 3 - adding ears and a base.

Session 4 - Fixing shoulder proportions and adding hair.

Session 5 -

Session five, I had to give her a lobotomy. I cut off the back of the head, scraped out the interior clay and reattached the cranium. I gained a new respect for brain surgeons.

Session 6-7.

For sessions 6-7, I spent most of the time hollowing out the stand and entire head, before stuffing it with newspaper.  I began attaching a hairpiece.  It was too heavy.  Her neck split open and her head fell backwards, nearly rolling off the table into my neighbor’s lap.

With help, I repositioned the head so she leaned forward and patched her severed neck.  Then added clay to the stand to support it.  Once everything was stable, again, I attached a head scarf.

The headscarf

It took four tries to get the headscarf correct.

Then I practiced making flowers until I came up with a strange lily and hibiscus arrangement.  It was time to be done – for now.  The class has been a fantastic experience.

The final outcome.

The amusing aspect of sculpting is that many of the heads looked quite a bit like their creator despite the attempts to create an Other.  I do not think mine looks like me.  It was only as I stared at Mojo over dinner did I realize she resembled him – with bigger lips.

I have no idea what will happen when she dries and is placed in the kiln.  I don’t know if she will live through her trial by fire.

Perhaps like the Divine I will have to create billions and billions in the hope that one day my creation will be perfect.

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