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digital image

My image for my body on ceramic tile didnt just pop out of no where. I created it in illustrator using the wacom tablet. I recommend everyone or anyone who designs to either buy or at least try a wacom. I have had mine for like 5 years and I love it. When I started creating my image in illustrator I used a image to base my illustration on. Then I tiled it and seperated them based on the actual ceramic size. Finally I stuck my paper in the printer and booooooom. It was ready to go.


Final Run for now

So I ponder. This semester will be my last in college. And this class will be my last studio class here at UMD. I can honestly say I learned a lot about my process in the ceramic and the image transfer world. Being that I tried roughly 5 different papers, which none of them worked until the 5th one? I find it interesting how when we stumble across an answer to something it comes at the last minute, the last run. I am crunched for time to go further into my study of ceramics and the digital world for this semester. Although I am not done, I have too much clay and too much time this summer to let my study go. My semester is coming to an end as all of yours is, so I employ all of you to dig deep in your free time and scratch into the digital world you have entered this semester. Go further into the depths of your imagination and pull something out.

Jeff Irwin

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I create my art to examine and communicate the personal, political, social and environmental issues that are important to me.

By creating a type of narrative which employs recognizable images as symbols and metaphors, I aim to provide new ways of perceiving and understanding these issues. I refer to these works as symbolic narratives.

My work is also meant to provoke questioning both visually and conceptually.

I develop this narrative by placing these symbols in juxtaposition to their origins or in otherwise ironic settings. This conflict between expectation and contradiction is further reinforced by the placement of the drawings on the sculptural forms. In one area the sculptural character may be defined and strengthened by the drawings, while in other areas the form itself may be nullified. I use this pushing and pulling of space and illusion as another means of manipulating the viewer's perception. These conflicts and contradictions encourage a questioning atmosphere and direct the viewer to examine the ambiguities of reality, illusion and perception.

Another consistent theme in my work involves integrating the human presence with the narrative. Though a recognizable figure is rarely depicted, I utilize images that refer to this presence.

My use of predominately black and white is influenced by German Expressionist Wood Block Prints.

When working on ideas for pieces I look for contradiction, irony and humor in the world that surrounds me. I like to take notice of both how we impact this world and how we interpret that impact.

The Drawings are created with wax resist and some scragiffito.


his website

Wendy Kershaw

I use clay to illustrate a world in which small acts of everyday life revel in their full
importance, defined in bold composition and subtle detail, which results in a rich
storytelling that is both quirky, sombre and humorous.

The celebration of domestic rituals has been a central theme in the narratives, with
more recent work encompassing folk sayings.

Intricate narrative illustrations are etched with needles on to raw porcelain and
stoneware, before stains, glazes and decals are fired on.

Forms range from framed panels and vessels to books with moveable pages, folding
screens and clocks.


her website

The Idea

Being a graphic designer I am surrounded by digital images. These images may vary from photographs to illustrations, to just the simple use of type. I love all of these types of images and how they are produced. The process of these images is complex but unique that is what draws me in to them. The layers and depth you can create on a simple surface using digital media is outstanding. My question now is how I can take these images to the next level. That is my goal, I want to take these digital images and bring it to the next the level.
Through my years at UMD I have found that ceramics allows me to transfer my graphic design skills into a different environment. By doing this I have learned and reinvented myself as an artist and a designer. I am drawn to the curves, angles and use of type. I try to use type as much as possible in my work on the simple fact that you can read it, therefore it must communicate but now I want to expand the use of type. I want to merge image with type, and layer it on to ceramics just like how you can layer in Photoshop or illustrator. So how do I do that?
The next step I feel is to make a ceramic book. All books tell stories with type and image. Graphic novels are becoming a cult trend and are being made into movies. Now I do not want to make a graphic novel but the way illustration and type is merged to tell a story or express an idea is without a doubt useful to my idea.
I have two sets of books I am interested in making. The first serious will be based off of blueprints and how they show scale and explain. By using a blueprint theme I will then focus on figures and body parts and how they layout on my ceramic canvas/pages. Now the next serious will be more type based. These will be poetry books that use type to carry the poem through each page. I am considering these to be made like an accordion book or possibly a tile puzzle where you slide the tiles.
Growth is one word that will be in the back of my mind during this project. I am interesting in the process of doing things. So for each piece I want to gain an understanding of how to mold clay into something that speaks my ideas as a designer and artist.


This is me as a NINJA!!! Wielding duel swords. This is my avatar if I had one. One word, stealth.
Thumbnail image for ninja.jpg

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