Sunday, June 17, 2012

A Story

      The latest issue of Professional Artist (pictured above) had some advice about writing an art blog. I was very pleased to discover that I have already been doing many of the things prescribed. There were however, a few things that I have yet to do with my blog. These include storytelling and list compiling. These, along with other ideas stated in the article, are supposed to help people understand your art, your perspective, and a little about what shapes your art making. I'll make some lists later, but for now I will tackle the story telling part.

      For many years now I have signed my work with the unique character featured below:

Once in a while I would be asked where I came up with this style of signing my work. Well, today I'm going to explain it.

     This story begins when I was in high school. I have always enjoyed working with clay, and when I was in high school I took as many ceramics courses as I could. I loved it. It was my favorite course, and this interest was carried with me as I graduated and began college. I entered as an undeclared freshman but as I began my studies I became more and more drawn towards art. I still had a passion for clay, and had worked in the open studio in the basement of the student center. After a while I decided to begin the study of art and became a pottery major. Here are some samples of my work:

     In my very first collegiate ceramics course, my instructor informed us that we would need to include our initials on the bottom of all our works. Once the clay is fired it tends to shrink and it was not uncommon for the work to become unrecognizable. The signatures helped people distinguish which work belonged to which artist. He also advised us to develop a unique way of linking our letters, so people with the same initials would be able to determine their own. I merged my "P" and "K." It's pretty unique and I never lost any of my pieces in a firing.

      I loved working with clay, and I still do when I get a chance. However, I did not stick with pottery while in art school. Why? You may ask. Well, the program I was enrolled in had a very strong emphasis on wheel throwing. The intro class was hand building, but thereafter it was the wheel until you got to your senior thesis. I enjoy working on the wheel but I really excel at hand building. I find it more freeing and expressive. Wheel throwing is fun, but it is monotonous. Especially when you have to spend an entire semester making nothing but platters. When I shifted to drawing/painting I took my signature with me.

      I have done some research and I am the one and only Peter Klubek out there, so I could just sign my work. But I like my signature, and the homage it pays to my pottery beginnings. So I think I will keep it.

      One more thing, just for fun. When I switched to 2-D art I remember being afraid of running out of things to "draw." I remember thinking: "What the heck am I going make pictures of? Surely I will run out of ideas before I graduate!" Years later, I'm still at it. So I guess I'm not out of ideas yet.        



Veg said...

Yea! With my new computer up and running, I can keep up on our blogs again. Like the bridge work idea, really like the story of your initials. I never thought of artists having stories to tell, about their art making and end products, but of coarse they would! Glad to read some of yours.

Anonymous said...

Like your ceramics. Imaginative.