Pinch pots are often the first thing taught in a beginning pottery class because they require very few tools and are a great way to get familiar with the properties of clay. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make sophisticated forms with this method. In fact, the beauty of this technique is that the only limiting factor is your imagination. In this project, an excerpt from our free download How to Make Pottery: How to Learn Pottery Techniques and Enjoy Working with Clay, coil potter extraordinaire Emily Schroeder Willis shows how to make a beautiful pinched pitcher.- Jennifer Harnetty, editor.
Gail Kendall has a fantastic ability to manipulate clay that seems too soft to form with. Time and time again during the filming of her new video From Plate to Tureen: Slab and Coil Building, I thought to myself “there’s no way that is going to work!” But time and time again, Gail pulled off what I thought was impossible! In today’s video, Gail demonstrates the unconventional method she uses to make trays and platters with what she calls faux feet. I love the low-tech simplicity of this method – all you need are a slab, a coil, and your hands (plus lots of practice to get it to work with such soft clay!). – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.
I first saw (and held) Birdie Boone’s belly-bottomed pots at an NCECA exhibition a couple of years ago, and I absolutely fell in love with them. Not only were the soft subtle colors contrasting with red clay body beautiful, but they felt so good in my hand because of the rounded bottom. In today’s post, Birdie explains the handbuilding techniques she developed for these pots, and the smart way she fires them to avoid slumping. – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.
When I first saw Blair Clemo’s work, I figured the ornate surfaces were developed with sprigs that were attached after the pieces were thrown. In fact, the ornamental elements are a part of the structure of the pieces. In today’s post, Blair explains how he handbuilds with decorative sprigs and forming molds, and then finishes them off on the wheel. Ps. Next week, Blair is coming to town to film a how-to video of this interesting process!- Jennifer Harnetty, editor.
In Today’s post, Shoko Teruyama explains how she creates her forms using coils and slabs over bisque molds. Plus she shares how she coats her pieces with slips and carves intricate drawings into them revealing the red earthenware clay underneath.
Today, in an excerpt from the November/December 2010 issue of Pottery Making Illustrated, Arthur Halversen takes us through the coil building process he uses to construct his flower brick forms. He also shares his recipe for the frosting-like glaze he uses – the icing on the cake, as they say. – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.
Slump molds are great tools in handbuilding because they allow you to dream up whatever shape you want and allow you to repeat it many times. They can be made from a wide variety of materials – from found objects to plaster. Plywood is Joe Singewald’s slump mold material of choice. In today’s post, he explains how he uses plywood to make his signature clover bowls.- Jennifer Harnetty, editor.
Learning to play in the studio can have its rewards, especially when new and unique forms are discovered. As is evident in her work, Chandra DeBuse embraces play in the studio. How else could she create such fun pieces? In today’s post, an excerpt from the hot off the presses November/December 2013 issue of Pottery Making Illustrated, she shares the process for making one of her “Treat Servers.” I especially love the ingenious use of craft foam as a template! So smart. – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.
Scott Dooley’s work looks to be anything but simple, with its wild angles and off-kilter shapes. But if you break it down to the basics, you learn that it is just made up of a lot of simple parts. In today’s video clip, an excerpt from his new DVD Handbuilding Modular Forms with Stiff Slabs, Scott demonstrates how he makes the building blocks of his sculptural vessels and the tools he has come up with along the way to make his process easier. With these tips, all you need is some imagination to develop interesting hand built pottery of your own. – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.