hanee birch

Chair no. 1

This work has been adopted. If you would like me to make more like it, let me know in the comments or contact me.

This is currently photographed in unfired clay. It will be fired when fully dry and the photos will be updated. Occassionally, works are destroyed in the firing process.


This was a comission done for a friend of mine as a gift to her husband. The pose was in one of those old overstuffed upholstered chairs.

The process on this was to first shoot some film of my friend sitting and chatting in the chair in whatever positions she tended to take naturally. Through watching the film over and over I picked out and combined what I felt to be the most characteristic details and then sculpted it mostly through a combination of memory and imagination. I had the benefit of being able to return to the film if needed, too.

I have a policy I’ve been following on the rare occasions when I do work from reference: I try to keep the reference in another room and I try as much as possible to make sure the reference is not overly static. Slow motion film works well for the latter requirement, though it’s not nearly as beneficial as work from life when that is available.

In this case, when I hit a wall and felt I needed to use reference, I would go upstairs and watch the film for a couple minutes and then return back downstairs to the modeling stand for another session of work. I find this keeps one from mindlessly copying and forces you to internalize a deeper understanding of the form.