Friday, January 19, 2007

Stoneware Drums

Alex has been constructing drums for a show this fall. He throws most drums in two pieces and then joins the parts together while they are still maleable. Today there are at least seven drums in the works!

Alex uses stoneware clay to craft his drums, which makes them durable and gives a great booming sound. A lot of ceramic drums are made from earthenware, which is much more fragile. He uses both traditional knotting systems and tuning pegs when he strings the heads on the drums. The knotting systems are beautiful, but drummers who aren't familiar with the system usually prefer tuning pegs to adjust the tightness of the drum head.

We are testing new glazes before we begin glazing the drums pictured above. This process is time consuming because we added in 11 new glazes at once and we want to test how the glazes react when they are butted up against each other, when they are layered, and how they stand alone. I was once a math whiz, but I can't figure out how many possibilities there are!

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