New square trays – Dec 2013

Here are some examples of the latest square trays I’ve been making, I think they are working really well now and I’m finding some of the new glazes exciting  – lots of potential! The first square tray here is made from a terracotta from Valentines Clay that’s then layered up with porcelain slip and fired to 1280 degrees. I didn’t know whether the terracotta would bleb at this temperature but it didn’t and I was delighted with the toasty purpley colour too.

Small square stoneware tray.
Small square stoneware tray £30. (11cm x 11cm x 3cm)
Small square porcelain tray.
Small square porcelain tray £30. (11cm x 11cm x 3cm)
Small square porcelain tray.
Small square porcelain tray £30. (11cm x 11cm x 3cm)
Large square porcelain tray.
Large square porcelain tray £90. (33cm x 33cm x 3cm)
Large square porcelain tray.
Large square porcelain tray £90. (33cm x 33cm x 3cm)

New trays, vases and bowls

These are the new shapes that I’ve been making since Xmas. I always try and put at least a couple of new glaze tests into each firing, and some of the experiments with layering porcelain slips over toasty stoneware bodies were starting to yield some interesting results. It also occurred to me that all my recent work was slab built and I was missing throwing, so I wanted to do something that combined the excitement I was getting from the new surfaces with the meditative activity of throwing. I’m really pleased with the contrast I’m getting and the way the new bowls and unomi sit in the trays.

 

New Vases

Whilst experimenting with layers of  porcelain on stoneware clays for plates it seemed natural to make some of these into vertical forms too.

I joined these slabs together whilst the clay was still quite soft. This is a technique that my friend Nigel was using when he was potting out in Spain, partly because of the hot weather and the need to join them together quickly before they dried out too much and partly due to his spontaneous nature. I really enjoyed making some slab pieces with him and this is the technique I decided to use this time too. When you scrape a kidney down the join of two slabs when the clay is still nice and soft you get a lovely burr on the edge, and this seems to suit the marks I was drawing into the surface and break nicely through the glaze

 

New pots from Aug 2012 firings

The kilns on at the moment and I’m very excited about opening it as there are some pots in there with new glazes that came out of glaze tests from the last firing. Here are some pics of a few pots that came out of the last firing.

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More pots from July 2012 firings

A few more new pots that came out of the kiln this July.

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New pots from July 2012 firings

Some new pots that came out of the kiln this July. I have been playing around with the glazes and the firing cycle a bit, and also trying out a new type of foot for these plates, I’m really pleased with them and an added bonus is that the plates will hang more easily with these new feet.

I’ve been playing around with the idea of laminating porcelain on to stoneware clays with additions of local iron bodies, the second plate below came out quite well so I’ll be pushing this idea a bit further.

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Reduction stoneware

I love working with heavily grogged stoneware bodies which result in warm, rich glazes. I have moved forward to high-fired reduction firings, exploring the classic Shino, Celadon and Tenmoku glazes in particular.

I am drawn to certain shapes and forms and continue to make them in a (probably endless) search for that elusive sense of “rightness” in an object.

At the moment I am having a lot of fun using traditional wood-fired packing techniques in my little kiln such as tumble stacking and using wadding and shells. This has some lovely effects such as causing a pleasing distortion of some clay bodies, local reduction and warm flashing marks on the pots and this all adds to the feeling of the immediacy of the flame and gives a richness to the glaze surfaces.

Recent stoneware pots, click on the photos below to see a larger images.

Shino sake set  Continue reading “Reduction stoneware”

Plates

I want to capture a sense of place and time in these pieces, and the images I use have an element of personal and sentimental captured moments for me. I also want them to embody my pleasure in the act of making them, and the element of chance is important in allowing the work to keep evolving.

I am drawn to glazes that accentuate the subtlety of the surface, the fact that the faintest mark can be recorded in the clay or glaze surface. This has led to me working with porcelain and blending my own clay bodies to achieve different effects with the glazes that I use. Clay is textured, torn, marked and reassembled to make surfaces that glazes can pool in and break against.

Recent plates, click on the photos below to see a larger images.

White stoneware plate with iron and copper reduction glazes 146mm x 114mm x 16mm Continue reading “Plates”