Monday, September 10, 2012

Creating a Clay Stamp

For this project, you will create both an initials stamp and a symbol stamp.  They can be combined onto the same form, or you may create two separate forms for your stamps.

Think about both the form and the designs you are creating:

*There is a direct and inverse relationship between the stamp you create and the impression it makes on the clay.

*The design you create is a representation of how you wish to be perceived.

Steps for creating your stamps:

1.  After completing your sketches, recycle and wedge
a piece of clay about the size of an apple.

2.  Break off a piece of this clay and begin shaping your stamp handle.  Remember that the handles can be circular, square, triangular—whatever you like, but they must not be thicker than 1”!  Leave the ends wider for the images to be put onto.

3.  Trace your designs onto small pieces of tracing paper with a pencil.  Then put the tracing
paper pencil side down onto the flattened end.  The design should appear backwards at this point--which is especially important for your letters!!  Trace over the design with your pencil or a pin tool
and check to make sure the graphite has transferred onto the clay.

4.  Use a pin tool to cut off the clay around your design to make the letters or picture pop up off the block…or use a carving tool to scoop out the clay inside your letters or picture to make them
indent into the block.

5.  Smooth out the entire stamp: this is best done when most of the carving is complete, and the stamp
is leather hard.  Scrape out any excess crumbs of clay, use small amounts of water to smooth the handle
and surfaces of your stamp.

6.  When both stamps have been carved, put your name and block on the handle of the stamp (legibly), check it with your teacher,  and put the stamp on the Greenware shelf to be fired!

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