Clay from Art Camp Claudia McGill – Cylinder Figurines

Here you have the story of the cylinder figurines, from the Art Camp Claudia McGill.

They first appear as slabs turned into cylinders, and then they are given faces, of a sort.

You can see them in this picture on the kiln shelf, just bisque-fired.

Clay in kiln 1 8-16 small

I wanted to keep their faces clear but add some liveliness to them so that they would not look ghostly. I gave them colorful “outfits” using Velvet underglazes and some sgraffito, in which I used a pointed tool to scrape into underlying layers of color to make contrasting lines.

Here are some details of their “clothing”:

And here they are, themselves!

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18 thoughts on “Clay from Art Camp Claudia McGill – Cylinder Figurines

  1. Claudia McGill Post author

    Thank you. This is something I like about working in clay – for me it lends itself to series, working with the same variables over and over for a while, but each one coming out all its own individual. As you say, like we are as humans. There is something appealing about that thought.

  2. Claudia McGill Post author

    Thanks. They are easy to make, but then, they are complex to make. I like that about this kind of project – it’s up to me to take it where it goes, the form (the initial cylinder) does not predict it! necessarily

  3. Claudia McGill Post author

    You know, it’s funny, I’ve made patterns like these all my life, I think, but felt they were just doodles and not appropriate for “art” (I am sighing as I say this and then slapping myself on the head for setting limits..) I wanted to fit in and sell art and so on. Being self taught I lacked confidence for a long time, and I’ve seen so many puzzled glances at what I do over the years. Sort of made me wonder if I were nuts, even as I kept turning out the kind of work I do (it was impossible to change that, I finally figured it out – I am who I am!) Anyway, I’ve snapped out of it, life’s too short, I finally have realized. I credit the acceptance and support of people on this blog for part of this change, and some of it, I just decided not to worry any more. I really love the exuberance it is possible to express with the white clay and the brilliant colors and it just inspired me! I have some more pieces I plant to finish in this same way. Thank you so much for saying this ( and reading this long answer!), I really appreciate it.

  4. Claudia McGill Post author

    Thank you. I am glad you like them, I was wondering what you would think, because of your comment when they were blank. It actually helped me figure out how to approach them. Thank you.

  5. agnesashe

    Thank you for taking the time to write such a reply. ‘Be yourself’ so important, but often so hard. It takes a lot of energy to row against the tide, but it takes so much more out of you to deny the person you know you really are. It is such a shame so many of us don’t realise this when we are young!!

  6. Claudia McGill Post author

    Your last line is the key one. I could have saved so much of – all kinds of things – if I had been able to see this. But it’s taken time for me to get perspective, something I did not have when young. Also, there is a certain feeling of – if not now, when? – that I have now.

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