Another milestone of my art career has been reached, this time in the clay department. I recently completed my very first commissioned ceramic work. Brian Shepherd, notorious for putting on, running in, and promoting 5K and 1 mile races, asked me to create some awards for the annual Think Spring Run this year. He wanted a total of almost 70 medals in 3 different sizes for the race held on March 1st.
I started by deciding the size and shape. Since there was such a large quantity I decided to press clay into plastic lids to get the round shape with a ridge. I carved the letters into the prototype by hand and then poured plaster onto it to make a stamp to use for the rest of the medals. After molding and stamping I added a little design around the edge and then cleaned them up when they were leather hard. I bisque fired them with a few other things that I’ve been working on and then my wife helped me glaze them. We dipped them in one of 3 different low fire glazes from Amaco. The biggest medals were glazed with Peacock which was supposed to be a neat blue-green color but for some reason it came out brown. It looks good as long as you aren’t expecting blue-green… After they were fired I attached some strips of leather so they could be hung around the necks of the top runners. I didn’t get to go to the race but I heard that people liked them.