Five Great Pottery Wheel Throwing Techniques: Tips on Throwing Complex Pottery Forms Using Basic Throwing Skills
Full of great pottery techniques, as well as ideas you can apply to any pottery project, these step-by-step wheel-throwing instructions will help you improve your pottery throwing skills from concept through completion. For a tool that really does one thing (spins in a circle), the number of techniques and results possible on the pottery wheel are just astounding. Glenn Woods explains how to throw upside down for taller, trimmer pots. Billy Lloyd throws porcelain that look like it’s machine made, but the techniques you acquire trying to duplicate this technique means you’ll be able to tackle most any form in any style. Lyla Goldstein loves the concept of saucers and how they elevate the cup to a new level. A great gift idea! And if you saw Yoko Sekino-Bové you’d admire how someone of small stature can make such large pieces, but that’s the secret she has to share. Finally, Doug Peltzman demostrates throwing a great teapot form, one of the most difficult challenges for potters.
Being the editor of Ceramics Monthly has become a significant part of my personal identity, and stepping away from that will introduce a bit of uncertainty into my life. Luckily, I’m not actually leaving the building, and I’ll get to continue to work with all of the same incredible people who make this magazine (and everything else we do here) happen on a daily basis. I have no doubt the magazine will be in good hands, because one of those people is Jessica Knapp, and she will now bring her expertise and knowledge to these pages in her own way, and that is exciting.
—Sherman Hall, Editor.
One of the most encouraging signs I see that indicates people are able to address this concern is that we continue to see talented, dedicated people entering the field and making work that is personal, refined, and honest. Take a look through this year’s Emerging Artists (starting on page 45) and I think you’ll agree. For some of them, the answer is finding residencies that will allow them time and space to focus on their work, for some it’s making the most of whatever bits of time and space they can carve out at home. Regardless of the specifics, it’s clear that each of them has made a conscious choice to make clay a priority in their lives. —Sherman Hall, Editor.
In putting our last issue together, focused on Masters in Clay, and receiving great feedback and suggestions from you about your influences and those who you feel deserve coverage of a similar type, I began reflecting more intentionally on what really influences me in the studio. What came from that was an understanding that it’s individuals as much as their work that provide inspiration, information, and understanding. Some of those represented here occupy a place in my life only through their work; others have had direct personal impact (and honestly, their work means more to me because of it). Regardless of that, all 10 of these cups play some significant part in my daily life. So this little game is meant to be interesting and fun, but it’s also intended as a way to connect my influences to you, through me and my work. Plus, I need a reason to get back in the studio and make some cups! And I hope that, as you sit in your studio making cups (or whatever you’re making), you create some mental space to focus on your own influences and those individuals who helped bring you to where you are now. Enjoy! —Sherman Hall, editor.
But in this issue, we’re introducing a new, once-in-a-while article format that focuses on those who have considerable legacies in our field, and discusses the impact of those legacies directly. In no particular order, and by no particular ranking, we are including Warren MacKenzie, John Mason, and Karen Karnes in this (let’s call it the kick off) issue. There are many individuals who we could, and will, be covering from this perspective, and we are of course open to your suggestions for who some of those folks might be. – Sherman Hall, editor.
In this issue, among our usual fare, we will talk about the approach to ceramic design some have taken, and look at the resulting work so you can make up your own mind. – Sherman Hall, editor.
The January issue, for me, is always exciting. It’s the beginning of a new volume year of the magazine, and while we adjust and make improvements throughout the year, this issue is the one where it makes the most sense to implement new ideas and shuffle things just a bit more than usual.- Sherman Hall, editor.
As one year draws to a close and another approaches, one thing I like to consider is—well—the coming year. I’ve mentioned here before the fact that “magazine time” runs at least three months in the future, and that we’re constantly looking ahead to what is coming next (or after next, more accurately). And when one does that, suddenly spring of 2014 does not seem that far away, which I think is a very nice thought, don’t you? So, in going through this exercise, we are reminded that there are several opportunities for readers and others to contribute their work and their events to Ceramics Monthly.-Sherman Hall, editor.
The best possible outcome in seeing these half-finished projects is that we rediscover something we could not understand at the time, but now have the necessary tools or insight to complete, and so a reinvigorating adventure begins. Of course, you or I may not have those insights or tools, but hopefully in these cases we’re wise enough to think hard before just disregarding something that was previously discounted or relegated to the status of one-time diversion. -Sherman Hall, editor.
Now, I’m not trying to start a discussion on the relative merits and comparisons between wheel throwing and handbuilding, or recommend against using tools, or suggest that those of us who have more of our actual hands in the clay are better or more informed or more satisfied in some way than others, but I do think there is something nice about being reminded after several years in clay of the reason I first got into it—the amazement at the things one can do with just hands and clay. -Sherman Hall, editor.