Creating Native American Friendship Symbol Complete

 The last phase for creating one of my talismans is to take the bisque fired piece and use underglazes and glazes to apply color.  In the first photo the top look is the bisque fired symbol with orange underglaze painted in the recessed crossed arrows and the word friendship.  The second look is with the yellow background painted in with underglaze.  The final look is the symbol after it was coated with a clear glaze and fired in a glaze firing.

Native American Friendship symbol

Typically the look you get with underglazes when you first apply them is not the finished look after it has been fired.  The color often goes through dramatic changes.  This symbol above the color shift is not so much, it depends on the colors used.

In the next photo the work in the left is the color of the glaze when dried after application and then on the right is how it looks after a firing.  Pretty dramatic color shift in this case.  Also with these symbols I used a glaze instead of underglaze.  

Celtic shield knot and Iceland magical stave

I use both colored glazes and underglazes depending on the finished look I want for the different symbols.  Sometimes I need to use the underglazes and sometimes I like the look of the different glazes that I have.

In the next photo you can see that using underglazes requires using a clear glaze over them.   The clear glaze I use dries pink.   After using the underglazes to paint on the colors I want, I then use three coats of the clear glaze over them.  After firing it gives the you that clear gloss look.

Native American sun spiral symbol

Here is a look at the three new Native American symbols I created this past month.  The first is the Friendship symbol.

Native American Friendship symbol

When I sell a symbol from my Etsy shop each one comes in a cotton pouch with a card explaining the symbol.  The card for this symbol says, "Friendship - The Native American symbol for friendship is the crossed arrows.  Orange is the color of warmth and joy.  Yellow is the color of happiness and optimism. Friends are the Sunshine of Life."

The second Native American symbol I created this month is the Sun Spiral.

Native American symbol the sun spiral

The card for this symbol reads, "Sun Spiral - The Sun is the first healer of the people, the first Shaman.  The Sun Spiral is a Native American healing symbol which helps you to recover from setbacks and guides you to a healthy harmony with life."

The third Native American symbol I created this month is the White Buffalo.

Native American white buffalo symbol
The card for this symbol reads, "White Buffalo - The White Buffalo signals a time of abundance and plenty after a time of difficulty.  It is a sign that prayers are being heard.  To Native Americans a White Buffalo is the most sacred thing on earth."

A very interesting fact about the white buffalo is that they are not albino.  They are buffalos that are white.  Something like one in ten million are born white.  In last part of the 19th century when hunters had all but killed off every living buffalo it was thought that the recessive gene for white had been lost.  But there have been two white buffalos born in the past 50 years.

All of the Spiritual Symbols I have on my Etsy shop go through the same creative process.  It takes a while for sure but the end result is a beautiful work of art.

Here is a pic of the double drawstring pouch and the accompanying card for the friendship symbol.

Native American Friendship symbol

Each Sacred Symbol is created by hand exactly by the process I have outlined in the last three posts. Small variations in handmade artwork are what give each piece its own 'charm' and makes each piece totally unique.  These symbols are not manufactured in some plant by a robotic machine and that is readily apparent when holding them.  They truly have that unique warmth of hand about them that can only come from the individual attention and care each one receives during the creative process.

Because each one is created by hand there is a slight variation in size and weight among them.  They range from 10 to 12 ounces (284 to 340 gm) and are approximately 3.75 to 4 inches (8.9 to 10.2 cm) in diameter. 

Here I am working on carving greenware clay in the studio.

I hope you enjoyed reading about how I create my Spiritual Symbols.