Handbuilding | Week 3 & 4

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Last night was my third handbuilding class (I missed week 3 – bummer!) and I got a lot done. I finished my lidded bowl! After decorating the lid by carving little starbursts I then made the final touch – the base. I decided I didn’t want to add an attached foot to the bowl but, make a separate base. I like the idea of there being these three pieces and with the base I shaped it so that the bowl/sphere will sit on the base slightly off-center. I’m really happy with the way it’s come along and I’m finally appreciating the many imperfections. These pieces are still too wet to go to the kiln, so hopefully I’ll be able to send them next week. I’m looking forward to bringing this home and placing it on my bookshelf!

I also got my two pinch-pots and coil-pot back from the kiln! See how they are different colors? Next week we’re learning about glazing and I CANNOT WAIT! I’m so excited to add color to these pieces – my coil-pot needs all the help it can get! Ha!

In the last 30mins of class I started two more projects – more on those next week! I’m actually hoping to go to open studio hours later this week to continue working on them. We shall see.


Read about Week 1 and Week 2

Handbuilding | Week 2

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Catching up on posts! Week 2 my two pinch-pots and coil-pot had dried enough since week 1 to go to the kiln for firing (you can’t put wet clay in the kiln!). Before sending the pots to the kiln I covered two in a white slip (liquid clay) which apparently will effect the color of the glazing later on. I left one of my pinch-pots sans-slip so I could compare the glazes.

See that sphere? That’s the sphere I made week 1 and week 2 I cut it in half and carved out the inside. Why? To make a lidded bowl! This project in particular has really made me stop and chill. I so badly want everything to be perfect, but this is handbuilding – HANDMADE – of course it isn’t going to be perfect.

Week 2 I also got a crash-course in making a slab. My instructor can make a slab by hand but, thankfully there is also a machine in the studio that presses a slab for me! I attempted to throw a slab by hand and it didn’t go well. Looks like I need to go in for open studio hours to work on coil-pots and slabs!


Read about Week 1

Handbuilding | Week 1

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I’m taking my first ceramics class – and it’s a lot of fun. I’m currently in week 4 (catching up on posts!) and 1/2 way through the class. What’s the class? Handbuilding, at Genesee Center, taught by Ian Park.

It’s kind of hard documenting this class like I did when I took Lovin’ Letterpress at the Center. My hands are 99% of the time covered in clay – obviously. Each class I’ve tried to snap a few pics to share to Instagram but, wow, these photos do not do this class justice.

Week 1 I made two pinch-pots, one coil-pot (not shown), and one sphere (not shown). I really enjoyed making the pinch-pots! I was not a fan of the coil-pot. The sphere was maddening – ha! With my pinch-pots I added a “foot” to my second one after leaving my first pot very basic. Both pots have been through the kiln (bisque) and are ready for glaze. I’m VERY EXCITED to learn about glazing. I’m a sucker for blue glaze! I don’t really have a good photo of my coil-pot to share, but it isn’t that exciting anyways. I actually need to challenge myself to go in during open studio hours and make another coil-pot. Practice makes perfect, right? It was making the coils that was hard – I just couldn’t get the coils even, they would crack… it was a mess. As for the sphere (I’ll share a photo of that in my next post) we made a solid sphere of clay to later make a lidded bowl! Cool, right?

Lovin’ Letterpress II – Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 2

I finished printing my thank you cards last night! It did NOT go as planned. This is a perfect example of 1. learning from your mistakes and 2. making it work.

If you remember from last week the plan was to print a 2-color thank you card. After spending about 20 mins deciding on a color, I set-up the press making sure my text was centered. Well, my text was centered all right, but somehow didn’t start out that way! As you can see above my print revealed a huge gap between “THANK” and “YOU”. My word spacing was severely off. What to do? Well, I could have trashed the cards and started over, but wanting to save the cards (and not be wasteful) I decided to do a quick re-design. My instructor suggested I browse the ornamental type to add a little interest between the words. After briefly entertaining the idea of adding a martini glass, I went with the Art Deco type you see above.

Since I was now adding a third element to my card, I decided to make the “YOU” black ink and the ornament my second color – Pantone 485U. So, technically, although 2-colors my cards ended up being 3-impressions.

What did I do wrong? Honestly, I’m still not entirely sure what happened. What I do know, is that I could have caught this mistake earlier on if I proofed with the “THANK YOU” and then printed the “THANK” and “YOU” separately. Learning moment!


Read about Lovin’ Letterpress II – Week 1!

Lovin’ Letterpress II – Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

Lovin' Letterpress II - Week 1

I’m back in the print studio! Last night was my first Lovin’ Letterpress II class at the Printing & Book Arts Center (PABA) at the Genesee Center for the Arts. I am thrilled to share that I am able to take this class right now because I was awarded a scholarship from Ladies of Letterpress!

Since it’s been nearly two years since I took Lovin’ Letterpress I (doesn’t feel like two years!) my goal for last night was to simply re-familiarize myself with PABA. I was surprised when I walked through the door and saw that PABA moved some things around! The place looks great. There is a “new” (to me) reception area and mini-gallery to showcase student work and give project samples. A majority of the type cases are now in the basement which allows for more room in the main space. PABA looks great! Such a nice space to work in.

After I spent a good hour looking around I got to work. Going into class I knew I wanted to make a batch of thank you cards for my Indiegogo campaign funders. I also knew I wanted to attempt to print 2-color since I have only ever done 1-color. Last night I printed the “THANK” and “www.megancharland.com” in black ink. Next week I’ll be printing the second color which I haven’t decided on yet. At first I wanted to use a hot pink for “YOU”, but I’m not sure. I’ll post photos of the final cards next week!


Lovin’ Letterpress | RECAP – read a recap of my 10 week experience in Lovin’ Letterpress I –> this post links to each individual weekly post on my old blog: Week 1, Week 2, Week 3 & 4, Week 5 & 6, Week 7, Week 8, Week 9 and Week 10!

pen and paper

I recently bought an iPad and have found myself using the app Evernote for most of my note-taking. Although it’s only been a week, I know that my iPad will not entirely replace my pen and paper.

I love my current notebook and it’s filling up fast! This lovely Postalco Notebook might just have to be my next! The yellow one is officially wish-listed!