Today I finally get to start on a big tile project. I’m sculpting (bas relief ) tiles for a wall mural for a shower. Yesterday I rolled out 75 pounds of Laguna Millers clay #66, it took me 4 hours. My dear friend and fellow mud puppy allowed me to use her roller, saving me from hand rolling my tiles with a rolling pin. I rolled the clay out 1/2 thick and I was very careful not to bend it. I pulled my mini Cooper up to the garage door (yes a piece of dry wall 4 feet x 3 feet fit in the back of my mini Countryman, the biggest mini). As I rolled out slabs of clay,I carried them on a board to my car and then flipped them onto the larger board (drywall)Then I smoothed the edges where they jointed and went to work an the next piece . till I covered the board with a continuos 3 foot by 4 foot slap of clay. And then another smaller piece – 3 foot by 2 foot. I covered the whole thing with clay and went home to find some space in my house where I can lay all this clay out to work on. Not an easy task.
This guy has a very ingenious way of making tile! It wouldn’t work for my project but still a great idea!
The large board was very heavy and wanted to bow under the weight when my husband , my granddaughter- Ana and I very gingerly walked it around the outside of the house through the back porch (the only door wide enough) and into my tiny studio.
The day before I designed the wall. I drew a mermaid and an octopus on my iPad and then enlarged to the required size. The finished wall will be 7 feet by 42 “. I printed out all the pages in the line drawing. I used a free online program(Blockposter.com) to make the giant poster size. I needed the drawing divided into paper size pieces. The only problem was a half inch was cut off the bottom of each page but after I taped the whole thing together I just drew in the missing lines. This is my life size paper template that I will lay on the clay and gently inscibe the line drawing into the clay. I will also use this to help layout and assemble the final wall. I number each piece. I drew red lines to show where I would cut the pieces apart and grout(the stuff between tiles that keep it waterproof and allow it to expand and contract a little)and will go in when it is on the wall. There will be hundreds of pieces to put back together after the whole process. Like a giant puzzle. This drawing and printing and taping took all day with a small break to go outside and play in the snow with the kids. It too about 5 hours. The drawing took about 1 hour.