This is the super-fun event my pottery studio puts on every year.
For $20 you have a lovely tasting of over 12 home-made soups, choose a hand-crafted bowl to take home and you get to support a great cause. Our studio raises money to support The Beautiful Day Project. This project helps refugees new to Rhode Island receive job training and employment. They produce their own organic high-quality granola and then sell it. It is delicious as well as making a big difference in many peoples lives.
Here are some photos of bowls that have been turning up this week which willbe part of the event:
Join us this Friday 6-8 pm. You won’t want to miss this!
I’m continuing to work on my own stamps to create texture on my pottery.
This is a bird series. What is fun, is that every piece has a different pattern on its opposite side. I made a bunch of bird bodies, but I made the wings separate stamps. This way I can change the trajectory of the wings to simulate different flight poses. Instead of only having three bird stamps, I will have six bird bodies and 12 different patterned wings to choose from.
I also made stamp pieces of a tree. Each piece of the tree can be flipped to create more irregularity in my tree pattern. I can stamp in many different variations of a tree depending on how many times I stamp them. Little tree or big tree.
I am making some large bowls right now. I’ll try using them and send some updates of how they work.
Have a great weekend everybody. I hope you all get to do something creative :)
This September I set a goal to only wheel throw pots as opposed to hand/slab-building them.
I lasted about 4 months. However, I am giving myself permission to ditch this crazy committment!
My thought was, if I only wheel-threw pots, my skills would get stronger on the wheel (which is true ;) But here’s the catch, I might get stronger on the wheel but I simply do not like the finished product.
I LOVE texture and color.
Wheel thrown pots, to me, are just missing that – what’s the word –spunk. Don’t get me wrong, I tried. I invested in sgraffito (carving tools), I tried wax resist to get some cool glaze techniques. I swear I tried to go the traditional route.
I’m kind of excited that I felt so strongly about this. It means I actually know what I want. I tend to float like a snowflake in and out of everything. Not liking something is great. It gets me just a little bit closer to being a bit more focused. Maybe by the time I’m 80 years old I’ll lock into mastering one thing… HA! right ;)
With my new permission to renege on my goal, I did exactly what I wanted to do which felt great. This brought passion and excitement back into creating. I think that’s my intuition saying I’m on the right track. Now don’t get me wrong, I AM NOT A QUITTER. I am the crazy that created a work of art every single day for 365 days. I didn’t quit on that and there were so many days I wanted to. That goal felt extremely right. This one – not so much. I can tell the difference.
So, back to the best of both worlds. Which is very much like me. Why choose wheel-throwing over hand-building? Why not do – BOTH? That makes perfect sense – FOR ME. Here, I threw the bottom part of the vessel on the wheel and then rolled a slab to attach to the top. The texture came from my hand-crafted stamps which really makes the vessel feel unique and personal.
That’s it. Unique and personal. Maybe add in some happy and fun. This is what I am committing to and I’m finally feeling like I’m back on the right track :)
This week, I got to play with my new hand-made pottery stamps. Way too fun. Way too addicting. Can’t wait to see how they come out. Working with the stamps is firing off all sorts of ideas in my head!
Here’s a bunch of other things that have come out of the kiln:
I’m still painting too… will have some paintings to show hopefully next week.
As I like to think and say…
Keep on keepin’ on and bein’ creative!
While watching TV one night, I grabbed a hunk of clay and decided to make a bunch of my own stamps. I pretty much used the ends of pencils, pens and the ends of all my clay tools. Points, squares and round circles. They were then bisque fired.
I didn’t put too much thought or planning into them. They are pretty much doodles -in clay form. Mainly nature motifs, patterns and textures. I guess that’s what comes out when I’m not “thinking”.
I can’t wait to use them. So far I only got to use them yesterday when making this lid for a cream and sugar set. I am already in love with their imperfect organic look.
Below are some more cream and sugar sets getting ready to head to the kiln. The patterns on the ones below are from wooden textile stamps. See how they are a little more structured.
Well, I love new inspiration. I like that the patterns come straight from ME. I think you’ll see these stamps creeping into my future work.
I already want to make more!
I am continuing my personal goal of wheel-throwing pots instead of hand-building them. This is forcing me to come up with different techniques for embellishment.
For the pitcher up above, I found a beautiful photo of a Moroccan carpet and used a part of the motif as inspiration. There are 4 different tear drops in my design. I painted with underglaze paints and when they were dry, I took carving tools and carved outlines.
The vessels below utilized the same technique; hand painted and then carved.
After their bisque firing, I will dip these pieces in clear glaze and they’ll be ready to go!
My pottery teacher laughed. She said “Boy, the extent you will go to avoid traditional glazes!” …she’s right. I’m going to have to embrace those muddy-brown glazes eventually! …eventually ;)
For the distant future, I am challenging myself to only wheel-throw as opposed to my chronic obsession with hand -building pottery.
Here are a bunch of mugs I left very simple and un-altered. Of course I am not one to keep things completely simple (aka. PLAIN), so this will be a challenge to decorate wheel-thrown pieces without adding extra clay.
For these mugs I stamped in some sayings and images. The fun part was painting on wax . Any place there is wax, the glazes will not adhere. Later, the wax burns off in the kiln. As a design element, I created arches with the wax, glazed them and it produced a nice effect. The bare clay shows through in the arches and yet I still have areas of beautiful glazes.
I am currently painting and sgraffitto-carving a bunch of vessels. I will add photos of these pieces in the current days. I’ve also tripled the amount of clay I would typically throw on the wheel.
I love giving myself challenges. It makes me grow as an artisan and keeps things fun and interesting. I think they call that ” a perpetual learner” :)
Spoons! Who knew spoons could be so cute, cuddly and fun! lol
Spoons are a great opportunity for kids to make those pinch pots. Plus coil making and scratch and slipping.
These little orbs are rattles we call “spirit shakers”. They are based on a Native American tradition. Tiny pieces of clay are wrapped in paper and placed inside these hollow balls. When the paper burns off in the kiln, the tiny clay pieces are released making a fun sound.
Next we have wheel-thrown bowls that were then altered into animals. Don’t forget to scratch and slip!
Finally, I saw this pin on Pinterest and thought. We have to make these!!!
When the kids came to pick up their pots, we had grass seed and some instructions to make their very own chia heads. Fun stuff!
So this concludes pottery camp 2017. 600 pots later, the kids are going home with some great projects and memories to boot!
Each kid at camp made a wall pocket using the slab roller, templates and tons of stamps for decoration.
Traditionally wall pockets are used for mail, keys, pens and pencils, maybe even a plant. However, I mentioned I use my pottery pockets at home as charging stations. I can’t stand all the wires! It keeps all the devices off my counters.
The kids thought that was an awesome idea. Every household has a device or two. They were so clever, they actually put small holes at the bottom so the wires could go into the pockets and hide even more mess.
Sometimes I forget who’s the teacher and who’s the student!
Remember when I figured out I could use craft foam to create my own pottery stamps?
Each camper made one too. I just love how the glaze breaks on their pieces.
They also had the opportunity to throw some bowls and mugs using the pottery wheel.
I just adore watching what kids come up with :)
15 beach-themed mugs. Hot out of the kiln.
Half wheel thrown / Half hand built.