Sunday, June 1, 2008

May Pottery

I have spent most of May at the Pottery Studio working on Scottie ornaments to take to the Scottie Convention in June.

Earlier this month I purchased Hydro-Bats. They are made of plaster and have the pin holes for the potter's wheel. They are far superior to the plastic bats I had been using when throwing as they do not flex when you remove them from the wheel. They have take some time to get used to as the clay does not adhere in the same way. I have had two pieces near completion that have flown off the wheel and been lost.

My first two successes with the new bats are this small lidded bowl thrown with Black Mountain clay and glazed with Korean Blue and a hanging bowl for a plant (not pictured). The hanging bowl is thrown the reverse of a traditional bowl. Instead of pulling the walls out, the walls are pulled in to form a dome over the air pocket and it is sealed until the clay is leather hard. At that point, it is trimmed and the holes are made for the wire (to hang it) and drainage. I will photograph it once I have it strung up with wire.

Below are three pieces thrown on the hydro-bats and trimmed, yesterday. The texture is called chattering. It is done when the piece is trimmed to add interest. It is hard to understand the size in these pictures, but these are some of the largest pieces I have thrown. Also, the vase is the lightest piece, I've ever created. The secret is to trim away the excess clay without going through the piece. I get nervous about going through (which I have done), so my pieces remain heavier than they should be. These were thrown using Nara porcelain. Once they are completely dried they will be bisque fired, glazed and high-fired.

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