Monday, January 8, 2018


clay, glazes, oxides, twine, copper & brass

Last year I saw some really cool and fun new ideas for Clay Bells on Pinterest
(haven't done these with the kids since the 1980's),
so I used my beginners to test these out.
It turned into a 3 part assignment and the students really seemed to enjoy it.

They had a choice of techniques on how to build the bell itself;
coil, pinch or slab.
Most chose pinch.
There were a few minimum requirements in the parts, glazing and assembly.
I was hoping for something recognizable on top of the bell
(perhaps to set a theme),
that it hang without falling apart (only one did),
that it clang without cracking or breaking,
that they make a few ceramics charms/beads for stringing in various places,
and that they learn how to work with copper/brass;
the cutting and deckling of its edges, and punching of holes thru it.
Let's see how they did.

This first one was built by senior Lauren Kennedy.
Lauren did work to a theme of birds and their feathers.
It was hard to photo these terrific bells because they are kinetic,
so it's hard to see the feather charms and brass pieces she cut that balanced the bell so well.

Next we have this super fun taco on top of his bell by senior James Park.
I also like the texture he put into the bell itself by stretching the clay,
and how the glaze breaks over it.. 

And senior Avanthi Dev came up with a really interesting form for her bell.
Feels a bit like an undersea creature.
So much fun!

Sophomore Olivia Krueger pulled off a very difficult coil inlay design on the side of her bell,
and then did a great job glazing her sundial on top.
Or is that an Aztec Calendar Olivia?
Whatever it is I love it!
Reminds me of all the beautiful designs I saw in Mexico City 
at the Museum of Anthropology back in the day (1980's).

This next one was made by senior Brian Aguirre-Hernandez.
I really liked how he turned his cooper piece into a mobile with lots of charms.

And senior Ashley Iseri never lets us down with her impeccable craftsmanship
and sensitive glazing.

Wish I could have caught her leaf still below
so you could see how nice the Rutile and Cobalt Oxides look together.

Of course we all loved junior Sarah Oh's bell.
She used a pinch technique to sculpt over.

We end with this cutie patootie by senior Vinaini Jayasinghe.
She also cleverly built a dangling mobile with her brass piece.

I am missing one bell by junior Vincent Nguyen.
I will try to get it up tomorrow.
Sorry Vincent!


  1. These are so wonderful & imaginative!

    1. Thank you Hazel, the kids loved doing the assignment

  2. These are beautiful, whimsical, and completely charming! Your students are so very lucky, and you both deserve accolades. I want one! Would any student be willing to part with his or her bell?

    1. Thank you Jen, and I'm asking around for you this week.

  3. Hard to believe these came out of an intro class ... once again Sarah Oh caught my eye with what appeared to me to be a phoenix ... the speckling on Ashley Iseri's bell is so delicate and the leaf so true ... Vanaini's eyes catch me with each scroll up to look some more ... and I'm impressed by the fine detail and glazing on Olivia's astrological signs and I wondered "is she an Aries?" ... Lauren's bell put me in mind of a Tiffany lamp shade ... Brian's bell top made me wonder how he interwove the elements and James' clever taco bell made me grin ... lastly, always I love art that sings of the sea, as Avanthi's did for me.

    Thank you all for a wonderful beginning to my morning ...

    1. Thank you Liz, I love how you always pull out something from each piece that I've missed.

  4. I love bells, stunning work by your students! Doesn't it just inspire you to be surrounded by all that creativity!