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creative play with clay


Something you may not know about me is that I'm very sensitive to certain sensory stimuli like light, sounds, and some tactile sensations, particularly when things stick to my hands. This is one the reasons I find cooking and baking challenging, why sandy beaches and I don't always get along, and why I'm prone to wiping my fingers off between each french fry. When things stick to my skin, I feel a sense of urgency to "get. it. off." So, though I love and admire pottery and ceramics, I've never tried the art form myself.

But I've been feeling a little braver and open to stepping outside my comfort zone these days, and when I learned that my friend Alyson Iwamoto would be hosting Clay Labs at Craft Contemporary, I invited my younger sibling Britt and visiting mother-in-law Diane to join me before I could change my mind.

Our project was to create clay animals, and Alyson taught us how to shape and hollow out the clay to form the critter of our choice, etch into the clay to add details, attach elements with the score and slip technique, rehydrate dried-out areas where cracks had formed, and add slip glazes for color.

Britt and I couldn't resist making neko, of course, but they also added a bunny rabbit to the mix, and my mother-in-law made the most wonderfully inquisitive turtle.

When Britt was a teenager, they learned wheel throwing and hand-building before, so it was so much fun to see them happily reconnecting with a beloved art medium again (and get tips and notes of reassurance along the way).


We had such a lovely time that I can't wait to explore some more creative play with clay in the future. Is there something new you've tried recently, friends?


♡ Kimberly Kuniko

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ICYMI


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Words, Art + Photography by

© Kimberly Kuniko

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Welcome to the personal blog of of Kimberly Kuniko, a Nikkei American illustrator, collage artist, poet, and host of cozy, virtual guided creative retreats with a new theme each month.

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