Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Clay & Copper Sun
This summer sun is a great project to build in two stages. The face of the sun is built with clay while the rays are made of a thick copper foil. I had my students cut out the shape of their sun's face and then we talked about 3-D shapes that we could add on for the features (spheres for eyes, pyramid for the nose and a cylinder for the mouth), we also created texture with the clay tools on the surface of the face. I also added a kanthal wire loop in the top of the clay so that it could be hung later. The clay pieces were fired and then in this case I had students use watercolor paints to add color to the clay, they could be glazed just as easily. We looked at a color wheel and discusses the various names for the different colors. I had students use a palette of warm or cool colors to paint their sun faces with. For the rays of the sun, each student was give a retangle shaped piece of thick copper foil, a stack of newspaper and a dull pencil. If you use the dull pencil and push into the foil using the newspaper as a cushion underneath, you can tool the foil with a variety of patterns and designs. I have my students divide up their rectangle into 5 or 6 different shapes and then each shape is filled with a different pattern. The result is a textured surface on the opposite side of the foil. Once the entire piece is covered with designs, student will cut up the foil into their rays. PLEASE NOTE: The foil can have sharp edges when cutting, younger children will need help with this part. Each ray is glued onto the back of the sun using a hot glue gun and a ribbon can be looped through the wire loop at the top to hang your clay and copper sun!