JewishGuy, my boyfriend, is much more practical than me and would therefore probably be a lot better at ceramics than me if he tried it. He is focused on making useful things and how to make them, and that is good (to make useful things). I wanted that to be my focus for this class, but because I got these "assignments" I was totally caught up in making artsy things and was frustrated beyond belief. I even went to the studio yesterday and got so pissed off, I couldn't think of anything and my clay started drying... I made a vase and two little pitchers because I just needed to make something before the clay dried and was wasted.
Today JewishGuy and I sat down to figure out what I was going to make for the rest of my assignments because this is ridiculous. I need to just think of something and make it. The Shabbat lamp is on its way to being finished and looks good - I had a clear vision and I made it and it will be useful (hopefully).
Here are two of my new ideas that I sketched on the computer:
These are hanging herb jars for my "Off the Wall" project. Hanging jars sounded so boring so I didn't really want to make them, however if I make small hanging jars for herbs, that could be cool and useful.
The idea is that they would be small jars with a string tied around them that could easily be hung on any kind of hook. You could either put a hook in the wall or use an over-the-door hook to hang it on a door (like our kitchen pantry). Then each jar would have enough space for water at the bottom and some fresh herbs that would stick out of the top. In the picture I drew dill, rosemary and basil. This would save us counter space, as when we have fresh herbs we stick them in a cup on the counter that can easily be spilled.
I haven't decided if the jars should literally be tied on a string or if I should put a metal hook around the jars that would then be attached to the string somehow. (I would like an excuse to go back to the junk store, I will have to relate how fun that was when I went last week).
Another project was the "Self Portrait" project. JewishGuy suggested making pancakes first, since I LOVE pancakes (chocolate chip pancakes to be exact). But I was kind of against it, not to mention it would kind of be an ugly object. Then he suggested making a giant nose with my nose ring. I really like this idea.
One of my first projects in printmaking (my favorite) was to do a self portrait, so obviously I did this giant picture of myself, emphasizing my nose ring. My nose ring is really important to me, having the hoop is especially important - I had to take the hoop out for a while when I worked in the Jewish community, and I have to say I felt really saddened by it. As soon as I put the ring back in, I felt much better. This was also, coincidentally, the day after I quit my last - and worst - job, so who knows.
Anyway, making a giant nose also has other implications. Besides the whole deal with my nose ring, which I got almost 7 years ago and still love, it also brings up issues of being Jewish and how I never really feel like I fit in with the community. I don't "look" Jewish. Nobody ever thinks I'm Jewish by looking at me. Even if I dress like a frummie, I think only if I were in Israel would people think I was Jewish. In high school, if someone tried to guess my religion, invariably they would guess Catholic. I guess this comes from my mom's side of the family, with my grandma who has bright red hair (still, even at 94, it's pretty red and she doesn't dye it). Because of her hair and her very, very Irish-sounding name, she was often mistaken as Irish when she was young - the joke was on them when she opened her mouth and Yiddish came out!
I also don't really feel like I fit in with The Community. I'm not exactly sure what I mean by that, though. This feeling has pretty much persisted throughout my experience, wherever I've lived or gone to school - that I fit in with the others who feel they don't "fit in," and make my own community of odd Jews.
Anyway, so definitely doing a giant nose, and then as I drew it JewishGuy suggested I make it into a vase so at least it can be useful. Good idea. Very practical. ;-)