The Dragon Eggs
I kind of have an "in" with this thing because a wonderful buddy of mine is also a potter and has access to a kiln to fire these babies for me.
I had the choice of buying either a stone colored clay or a red clay - in the be-all-end-all it really doesn't matter which clay but as a former potter, it's been my experience that the stone clay has more grit so I chose the red clay for a smoother feel. And with no real "Workspace" to be found in my humble home, I pulled out the trusty old ply board and went to work. First thing is first when you're dealing with clay, you gotta KNEAD it. Much of the time when the clay is poured into bricks they don't get all the air out and if you fire something with an air pocket inside, it will explode in the kiln and ruin not only your project but possibly every other project in the kiln. This is bad. So always a good idea to spend a few minutes kneading your clay like it's a ball of dough to push the air bubbles out. Too bad this doesn't work on politicians.
I started out with a basic coil pot and worked my way all the way up the sides. To form the egg I had to do a LOT of pounding especially to close up the top. When you're done, you'll have something like the gems at the top to work with.
If you're new to clay, there’s a few things you need to remember:
1.) Your item will shrink 11% in the drying/firing process so it's important to account for that when you're making something.
2.) If you're making an item like this by hand (Without the use of a wheel..) it's important to remember that when you're attaching your coils together, you're going to need to "Score and Slip" in between each coil. Basically, run a fork in a criss cross pattern and mist it with a spray bottle for any surfaces where 2 coils will join together. Now that you're completely confused...
As of right now, I have 3 eggs that have been created and fired through once. They will need to be fired one more time at a high firing to finish them off and make them more solid. For projects like this, you need to do 2 firings. The first firing will turn your project into "greenware" which is ready for glazing. The second firing is to strengthen your piece and melt the glaze if you have any. We don't have any, we have other plans... muhahahahh!
Once I get these beauties completely painted and in their home, I will post a new picture for you. If you're taking this on, good luck! It's a lot of fun but time consuming and a very involved project. The result though is amazing and even better that every egg is different because they're made by hand.
And if anyone wants to buy em for $400.... sheesh!