Frisky Rabbit

Rabbit and Tulips, 12" diam. Cathy Kiffney
There is just a hint of fall in the air, cool and crisp this morning.
I've been having trouble with my clay body and those pieces I started about a month ago had some techical problems. :(
The doily pieces came out of the kiln with a few surprises. CRACKS! Thankfully three from the series worked, here is one of them.

So many birds

I've been trying to pinpoint when I first started making birds. Going back through some old gallery notes I see some listed in 1992. So that means at least a year or two before that could have been the start.

Clay wall birds, 2014, Cathy Kiffney Ceramics
I will go back and look at old images (not digital) and get some scanned to post. Until then, here are some new birds!
Ceramic wall bird, Cathy Kiffney Ceramics
The places some of my birds have landed in-- Australia, France, Ireland, Turkey,

Ceramic wall bird, Cathy Kiffney Ceramics
 England, Virgin Islands, Norway, Sweden, Greece, Spain. California, Michigan, Texas, Maine,

Ceramic wall bird, Cathy Kiffney Ceramics
 Connecticut, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, New Orleans,

Ceramic wall bird, Cathy Kiffney Ceramics
New York,  New Mexico, Washington, Oregon, Alaska, oh well, actually every state except possibly a few in the mid west. I guess these little birdies just get around! Just thinking of this makes me very happpppy! :)

Ceramic wall bird, Cathy Kiffney Ceramics

 I've listed these on my Etsy site, please visit! Visit my Facebook page for info about free shipping!

Texture impressions in clay

Using textures to press into clay is one of the extremely fun things to do with clay and a technique I return to over and over. I use my own hand-made stamps, antique wood-block stamps and found objects and you can even purchase texture mats and rollers just for this--the possibilities are endless.  The effects are instant and addictive, the challenge is do something with it to make it your own.

I came across a huge sale of doilies and could not resist.

old doilies to use for clay texture.

Cathy Kiffney
 Pressed the doilies into the clay and painted colored slips on top.
process, Cathy Kiffney Studio
 I took the slip soaked doily and flipped it over onto the next slab of clay to press that color into the clay. Then painted it with a contrasting colored slip.
process, Cathy Kiffney Studio
I  jumped in to the process and did the most obvious-- not the most original treatment but oh, so much fun!-- And I needed a brake from challenges.

But then I was at a loss as to what to do with the beautiful textures. I decided to get back to basics and began carving into the texture my old friends, the owls.

Process, Cathy Kiffney

For variety sake I used an addition technique by adding a sculpted rabbit and flowers. For the Fox piece I used a combination of carving and sculpted additions.

Jumping rabbit and tulips
process, Cathy Kiffney Studio
Mr. Fox and falling leaves
process, Cathy Kiffney Studio
 ...and of course, the birds....

ceramic wall hanging birds, Cathy Kiffney

ceramic wall hanging birds, Cathy Kiffney

wall birds, Cathy Kiffney

To spring from the hand

One of the first clay books I read was Finding Ones Way With Clay, (pub. 1968), my sister gave it to me in in 1975. It is sort of a therapy/art/clay book, well it was the heyday of the '70's!  It had a big (positive) effect on me and what I would end up doing for my life's work.

Paulus BerensoHn the documentary about his life and work go to:

“The word ‘art’, if you go back into its etymological roots, it’s not a noun, it’s a verb, it’s a doing, an acting, and it comes from the root for ‘to join’. So one is behaving artistically, one is in a state of intimacy and communion with the activity at hand”… PB