Saturday, February 22, 2014

Clay Facades

It's my favorite 4th grade project.  I think I anticipate it more than the kids- the houses.  I categorize this as a "Momma project"- those projects that Momma's going to keep, and 15 years later, when you come home with your wife/husband/kids, it'll still be on the mantle to greet you. They are "Facades"- front only, flat, and adorable as a wall hanging.  Some, no matter what, will always be so-so, but I get a lot of good results.  It is one of the few projects that I break out the glaze for.  I use "Mayco Stroke N Coats", which are similar if not the same to the ones used in the "paint your own pottery" places.  The colors are great, they are similar enough before firing to after firing that the kids can tell what they are using, and the clear coat is in the color mix already.  As long as the kids use 2-3 coats,  we get great results.  I have a small kiln, but if I am good about controlling the size, I can get a class of 20-25 in one glaze firing. I give each student a piece of paper about the size I want their houses to be, and they use a day to draw their house.  I have all sorts of reference pictures.  I run them through the copy machine before the next art day, and the kids cut them, and use them as stencils.  This cuts down on the square house/triangle roof/tilty chimney/combo that we see too often in the art room. So, with all that said, here are some of the many cool clay houses to come! 
Sometimes, you just are going to get an average result, no matter how you try to help.

Nice combo of textures and attached pieces- nice glaze too.

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