…and the secret is, what will these bowls and plates look like when I am finished with them?
I haven’t made any functional clay work in a long time. I’ve focused on tiles and sculptures. But — I got an itch to make some bowls and so…I did. Here they are as they come out of the kiln.
These items are all hand-built. I have several commercially-made bowls and plates that I use as forms.
I roll out a slab of clay (in this case, I am using low-fire terracotta and white clays).
I prepare the form by cutting strips of newspaper and lining the bowl or plate with them, then wetting the strips. This step is necessary to prevent the item I’m making from cracking as it dries – the clay will shrink and so the paper allows it to move, rather than being stuck to the form, pulling away, and breaking. Once the item is dry, I remove as much paper as I can, but it’s ok if I don’t get it all – the paper burns off in the kiln.
Once everything has dried, I load the kiln and do an initial (bisque) firing.
These items were fired a couple of days ago. Now I will decorate them, and I think it will be a long process, since I intend to put a lot of detail into them. I don’t want to hurry – I want to take my time and enjoy the process. So it may be a while before they reappear, all dolled up!