Grout does not just have to be a practical element in tile work. With a wide range of premixed grout colors available, it can also be used to aesthetically enhance a single tile or an entire tile mural. By strengthening the weight of a line or adding a weathered patina, grout can really become an integral part of the decorative process. Today, Laura Reutter demonstrates how grout can be used in this way. She also gives some great advice for press molding and drying tiles without warping.
Theme: The Synergy of Techniques
When it comes to challenging techniques, even the most complicated ones can be broken down into a series of simple steps. In this issue, you’ll get a bonus because each artist takes you step-by-step through a series of techniques to create a work of art. For example, Magda Glusek’s unusual sculpture uses sculpting techniques and decorating with both fired and non-fired finishes. Peter King describes how to handbuild large cylinders you can finish on the wheel and Margaret Bohls makes plaster texture molds as a starting point for her elegant vases displayed on lattice stands. In each article, you’ll find plenty of ideas to inspire your next piece.
Many people know that a microwave oven can be used to dry clay quickly when you’re in a pinch. Dielectric heating (the type used in a microwave oven) is also used in industry to fire ceramics for high-tech applications. This option is also available on a small scale to the studio potter, at least for firing tests and small objects using a microwave kiln. In today’s post, an excerpt from our latest free download the 2011 Buyers Guide to Ceramic Arts Supplies: A Studio Reference for Purchasing and Using Ceramic Supplies and Pottery Tools, Jessica Knapp tells you all about this alternate use for old microwaves!
Theme: Functional Tableware
Remember the rule about form following function? Well, here’s an issue that really illustrates that your forms can be highly creative and still get the job done. Annie Chrietzberg writes about Paul Donnelly’s excellent cup and saucer combinations in our featured project for this issue, and she’s joined by other equally creative takes on the idea of functional creative forms. Martha Grover demonstrates how to make a stunning lidded form, and Joan Bruneau and Arthur Halvorsen provide two entirely different takes on ways on making exciting flower holders. You’ll enjoy all four projects and much more in this issue.
There are many, many ways to put lines onto posts – carving, fluting, painting, drawing – but, I have to say, I had never seen anyone doing it quite like Jeff Campana. Jeff takes his well-thrown porcelain pots, chops them up into pieces, and then reassembles them. Then to top it all off, he uses glazes that pool in the seams. Today, Jeff shares his technique and how he arrived at such a labor intensive process in the first place.
For the Birds: How Deborah Schwartzkopf Uses the Pottery Wheel Combined with Slabs and Molds to Create Her Avian Inspired Forms
Deborah Schwartzkopf’s work has gone to the birds – for inspiration that is. Using bisqued molds based on her observations of birds, Deborah makes work inspired by pelicans and loons and everything in between. Follow her through the process of creating molds and using them as forms for her assembled pots.
Theme: Surface Decoration
It’s hard to believe that it’s already approaching fall meaning
school and the Holidays are close behind. For the past several years,
we’ve celebrated the surface with our September/October issue and this
year we’re continuing that tradition with a stellar lineup of articles.
Take a look…
It’s summer and time to throw some pots on the barbecue! Yes indeed, your trusty old Weber grill, the little round one on three legs that you might have left sitting in your garage when you upgraded your outdoor kitchen, can have a second life as a mini-kiln. If you don’t have a kiln but still want to fire some pots—or you have an electric kiln but you’d like to do some smoke-firing without digging a fire-pit in your yard or alarming the neighbors too much—the grill is a surprisingly versatile alternative.
If you think about it, Pottery Making Illustrated is like a
two-month ‘workshop’ delivered to your door. In the July/August issue
we’ve assembled a group of potters and experts exploring some
firing-related topics you’ll find exciting.
Today, Mike Jabbur shares his process for one of his liquor service sets. Not only does Mike make lovely functional sets, but he also creates display units for them that elevate them to a more sculptural realm.