The MADE NORTH Gallery presents new and experimental work by established and emerging northern designer/makers. We aim to promote a range of northern designer/makers and provide opportunities to find out a little bit more about how they work and their sources of inspiration.
Jade Crompton is a Masters student at Liverpool Hope University specialising in Ceramics and Digital Design. Her practice involves the research into the integration of digital technologies and ceramic mould making. Her work combines the traditional mould making and slip casting techniques with the new digital technologies including 3D digital modelling, 3D printing and laser-cutting to produce a new and contemporary ceramic collection.
Jade’s current collection was inspired by earth’s natural formations such as rock, ice and lava. Her work begins as a 3D digital model in Solidworks which is then spilt into layers, they are then laser cut from Perspex sheets, layered up and glued. This solid model is then used for the mould making process. Jade used semi porcelain for casting and then sprays the fired casting with coloured underglazes, she keeps some matte for the raw beauty of the colour and texture, and some glazed rendering them waterproof.
Featured Designer/Maker Interview
Who or what inspired you to become a designer/maker?
My obsession with problem solving and creating objects that people can both use have as a decoration piece. My granddad was a taxidermist who always wanted to make and learn he has always inspired me.
How would you describe your work and process?
My work is a collaboration of the old and the new, combining traditional ceramics mould making techniques with the new developing possibilities of digital technology. All my projects are inspired by the patterns and structures found within nature I then take certain details and play around with them in a digital format. Using SolidWorks a 3D software I design most of my pieces, allowing me more freedom and experimentation before making. I then use some kind of digital manufacturing to produce the model for creating a mould for casting, or more recently create 3D printed moulds for mass mould production.
The theory behind my work revolves around the ceramics and digital integration. My work process is very dependent on my mood, I will not work if I am tired or uninspired as I know I never create my best work in that kind of mood.
Where are you based? Please describe your studio.
I am currently based at Liverpool Hope University as I am studying my masters in creative practice here, I also work as a digital design assistant and so I get to use all the facilities. Once I graduate I will continue to use the workshops as a graduate. It has a large ceramics area to work in plus a variety of digital machinery to use. I will use the workshop for a year before starting my PhD in October 2016.
What piece of work are you most pleased or proud of, and why?
My most favourite piece to date is the Bubble Vase, this was the first piece I created using laser cut Perspex layered models producing plaster moulds. I had never seen it done before and was so excited and pleased to see that it had worked, this opened a lot of doors to the possibilities of the ceramics and digital combination.
What is the most satisfying part of the work you do?
The first casting of a mould is the first moment I get to see my design come to life in clay, it also defines whether or not the piece is going to work i.e. come out the mould, stand up right or keep its shape. It takes me around 2 weeks to get to this moment once my piece is designed in the software to slip casting from the mould. It’s the most exciting moment of the whole making process and it is extremely satisfying when your design works.
What would be your dream project?
My dream project would be to build my own 3D printer, one that could print with liquid plaster. If I achieved this I could design very complex moulds which could then be printed directly in many sizes or quantities which I could then cast from in many colours, this would speed up making time tremendously but I could still achieve a clean finish on my castings.
What are you currently working on?
I am currently working on my Crystal Tableware Collection it will contain a range of coffee cups that are double walled for insulation as they will not have handles for a more comfortable grip. The collection will be produced using 3D designed then printed models which will be used for producing the plaster moulds for casting.
I am also working on a performative ceiling screen with the University of Liverpool, where I am producing a large scale multiple ceiling piece for their School of Architecture Departments project. I have been collaborating and working with the University since 2013. The ceiling will be complete by September 2015, and details of the project are due to be published.
When you’re not working what do you like to do?
I have a passion for learning so I love to go to museums and galleries, I watch countless documentaries on anything and everything, especially when it’s about animals. I also love to go exploring caves, rock formations, forests and coastlines.
What does the north of England mean to you?
The north of England to me means HOME, I was born here, grew up here, and will probably always live here, The North has a lot to offer, and especially Liverpool it is full of museums, galleries, beautiful architecture, great universities and countless opportunities.