Just as a quick re-cap, 'Last Chance to See' celebrates a set of critically endangered species. I'm making twelve indigenous musical instruments from the natal countries of these beasts.
For a general overview, see my original project overview. For some musings on the specific drums that I'll be talking about in this entry, go here.
Raku is a hit-miss sort of proposition, unfortunately, and some catastrophic losses are inevitable. This piece may have been structurally compromised because it was a composite vessel (two pieces joined together). It was also over three feet tall... and there seems to be a correlation between size and failure rate in raku.
It's too bad. I threw a couple chunks in the reduction chamber for giggles, and they came out looking quite tantalizing. The also offer an interesting perspective on the difference between reduced and oxidized raku glazes... note the contrast in the photo in the right.
Anyhow, it looks like I get to do more gorillas!
Factor in the subtle interplay of color, and I think it's one of the nicest things I've done in Raku.
It also sounds staccato and brash, and plays beautifully.
Raku is infuriating, in that it sometimes yields serendipitous and wholly inexplicable results.
Why, in this particular case, did I get the copper flashing in the interstitial spaces between the carved lines? The effect highlights the design brilliantly, but I'm baffled as to how to replicate it.
Aside from being larger, this version features a broader basin (to better display rocks or other found objects). It also has a sharper, steeper lip for the pour-over from the top vessel, and should thus be more of a cascade and less of a dribbler.
I haven't decided yet whether to make the tiles themselves in raku or hi-fire... I'll probably make four of each and them decide.
Tiles are harder then you'd think. If you're not careful, they crack and warp like cane toad licking Australians. I've figured out that it works best to throw slabs on the wheel and then cut them to size.
Updates as things move forward.