Sunflower Morning - A New Clay Picture in Progress

Yesterday I got bored of making the rose canes I was working on, so I began sculpting a new clay picture. I always have enjoyed sculpting with a solid color of clay - it gives me the freedom to take my design anywhere I like without having to worry about any colors just yet.

I titled this new picture Sunflower Morning. The photos below show how it all came together.

As always I start with a layer of clay on a sheet of glass. Then I lightly mark the edges of the frame so I don't cut off any of the picture once I place it in the frame.

Next I shape the hills.

And draw out a little curved mound.

Then I roll little dirt clods. I tear off tiny bits of clay, flatten them between my fingers and lightly roll them into balls, rolling them each just enough to make them semi-round.

The finished mound.

Next I place a stem for my sunflower and shape the leaves.

I scour each leaf down the center with a needle.

And press the leaves into place.

Now I briefly place the sunflower's center - just to make sure I like the placement.

I marked faint dots around the center before I removed it, that way I can get all the petals lined up.

Here I've added seeds to the sunflower's face and placed it in the center of the petals.

Now I start adding the curly sunbeams.

Once they're all placed, I cut the ends even with the mark I drew along the top of the picture.

Then I test the fit in the frame.

All finished and ready for baking. I hope I get some time to paint it over the next couple days. I still have two rose canes to finish and late last night I started another clay picture...I'll have photos of that one really soon!

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