As you can see, I have been busy with my new wheel that Herb bought me for Christmas.
I am trying out new shapes and basically, just trying to get used to what my hands are supposed to do.
I have two different colors of clay. They are both stoneware, a white and a chocolate brown. I played with the white clay first and made a slip out of the brown and trailed it on some of the cups and a bowl to see how that will look. The colored bands are just an underglaze.
I need to work on getting my shapes consistent. These cups all started out basically the same size clay ball and as you can see they are nothing alike. I have ordered a scale so that I can weigh the balls before I start so that they are at least all the same weight. That still doesn’t mean they will all turn out the same.
And I had to try a batter bowl. The handle is too big and clunky but it was my first handle after so many years. Practice will help those.
These are the first bowls that I threw. The one in the back is the first thing I threw when I sat down on Christmas Day to try out my rusty skills. The ones in the front are much better. They have an even thickness, aren’t heavy in the bottoms and are a good shape. The one in the back may get crushed…
This is just a group shot of everything I have gotten off the wheel so far.
I tried to make a footed cup. I saw this technique on Lucy Fagella’s how to page and I like the look. The foot is trimmed and then you eyeball the three feet and slice the leather hard clay to form the feet. You make the bottom of the pot heavy on purpose, which is easy for me right now, and then you have enough clay to work with. I like the look. She used a lemon zester to put her pattern in the sides. I had a serrated rib that I used for mine. It gave it a nice texture to grip.
And I have the Glenn Nelson Ceramic books from the old days and browsing through them I came across an interesting salt cellar that is thrown in two parts and assembled. I threw a cone shape for the main body. (I didn’t think this through because the top was so tiny, I had to put it inside another piece to center on the wheel to trim the bottom, that was hard) I made a small lid to fit into the top hole and then threw a small shallow bowl, which I cut the bottom out of for the large opening on the side. The seam was very thin so I decided to reinforce it with a coil around the opening for decoration and to give it some strength.
And a side view of the salt cellar.
And finally, a small pitcher for cream or syrup. I did the three footed bottom on this little guy and had a better success with the handle. It seems to have a tipsy attitude on the handle side. I’m hoping that the liquid inside will counter balance this problem.
So, I feel pretty good about the first attempt. We took a trip to Manassas Clay yesterday and seeing some of the amateur pottery in the shop made me feel like I am doing okay. Of course, now I have to glaze them and that is another round of weeding out the bad and keeping the good. We’ll see who is standing in the end.