09-03-12 - Photos - Pots from Q2 2012

Fourth quarter of classes ended back in June. Work from that quarter :

Key :

Open egg; solid Kaki ; kaki was too thin
Left : vic's dip + kaki rim dip and sponges inside
Right : celadon + kaki rim and sponges outside
Same two as above
Shino bowl; chrome under outside and chrome over inside
chrome over is not nice; glaze was too thick for chrome under to come through
Open egg; rhodes outside and BBB inside
BBB has a nice glow and is a good smooth liner
Flower pots; wilcox with rhodes over ; shino with ben's stain
ben's stain caused some weird flaking
Flower pots; maria's gold and tenmoku
Celadon with something poured in the middle, not sure what
Left : celadon with cobalt painted under
Middle : solid tenmoku (I think; too thin)
Right : Ox inside, tenmoku out

My focus this quarter was mainly just trying to be more careful with the little details that have made my pots not that great in the past. Two things in particular I focused on were : 1. making better feet - you want the feet to be well positioned for stability and aeshetics, and you also want them to be a bit rounded so they are pleasant to touch and don't scratch tables (also tried to do better trimming around the feet and bottom of the pot to make equal thickness all over); 2. making really smooth bowl interiors.

Smooth bowl interiors need to be thrown with a rib; they also need to be glazed with a glossy glaze that doesn't do anything too weird. I also worked on eliminating the "potter's hump" so the interior curve of the bowl is perfectly round. I developed a technique for this : first throw the bowl as usual; at this point you will typically have a hump; now take a rib, support the rim of the bowl on the outside with your hand and gently push the rib into the hump, work it up and down and gradually smoosh out the hump; this will basically move the hump from the inside to the outside. Now if there's too much material on the outside you can throw it up from there; otherwise just wait and you can trim it off.

To get cleaner glazing, I used more wax and took my time. The bottom right bowl for example was oxblood inside; wait for it to dry; then wax the inside around the edges to protect it, then pour the outside upside down; avoids the messy-looking overlap on the inside (but allows some nice overlap on the outside).

Throwing low, wide bowls is almost like throwing plates. There's a continuum from bowls to platters with lips to plates. The main thing with throwing low bowls is to throw the inside to the shape you want and don't really worry about the outside; in fact, leave a pretty big supporting lump around the outside, because you can't get the clay too horizontal and unsupported in throwing; fix the outside in trimming.

Some issues I need to keep working on :

Don't be afraid of trimming too thin; take time, check the pot and if it's not done, keep going. There's no need to make more mediocre pots.

Be aware of glaze thickness. The prepared glazes in the studio are often not quite right; too thin and too thick can both fuck up your pot.

Take the time to get the pits out of shino; don't use it for bowl insides.


Sam said...

Wow those look great!

Sandra said...

Gorgeous Pottery!

old rants