Kip O’Krongly’s "Corn Duster" on the cover was created using slabs, slips, stencils, and sgraffito techniques.Try something new

Try Something New


The great thing about ceramics is that there is no end to what you can learn. There are potters in their 80s and 90s who continue to explore forms, surfaces, and glazes and they never tire of it. When we did a survey last year asking subscribers what they liked in the magazine, we found that they were eager for most anything with throwing and handbuilding techniques topping the list.


This issue concentrates a little on throwing with articles about thrown saggars, how to throw and trim bowls, and articles on throwing bats and clays. Our feature this issue focuses on how Kip O’Krongly builds up surfaces on slab-built platters to create a wonderful sense of depth. And Gale Batsimm provides a detailed record of how Larry Elardo constructs his garden planters.

Rounding out the issue are illustrations of ancient Persian vessels, Deanna Ranlett revisits a classic Shino glaze, David Scott Smith brings nature to his pots with a clay mold technique for sprigging, and T. Dubis provides directions for making a double-walled vase.


As with each issue, we encourage you to mix and match the techniques, for example, creating a Persian vessel with a wildflower sprig motif and fired in a thrown saggar. Or perhaps create a garden planter with a Shino glaze that will amaze neighbors and friends. So many things to try! Bill Jones, Editor


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In this issue

Blurring the Line 
by Gale Batsimm

Blending slab and coil building techniques allows you to create larger forms faster, plus it leaves room for lots of textures. See how Larry Elardo constructs his large garden structures quickly and easily using a flat coil technique.

Layer by Layer
by Kip O’Krongly

Building up surfaces with a sense of depth can be a piece of cake with smart planning and a layered approach. See how Kip O’Krongly cuts stencils and combines them on a surface then augments the piece with sgrafitto. 

Fast-firing Saggars
by Linda and Charles Riggs

Pit and saggar firing are simple when you have your own custom-made, properly-sized saggars to work with. Unlike aluminum foil, these saggars hold up to years of use and allow better packing of combustibles in the chamber.

Throwing Bowls
by Richard Phethean

From tall and narrow to low and wide, this is a step-by-step guide to making even-walled, well-balanced bowls of any shape or size. Even if you’re an expert, you may pick up a reminder or tip that will improve your next piece.

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In the Mix: Shino Glazes 
by Deanna Ranlett

Deanna Ranlett loves to mess around with glazes and in this issue she revisits an old favorite—Falls Creek Shino. By updating the materials and adding different coloring oxides, she produces some specular results. 

Tools of the Trade: Throwing Bats 
by Bill Jones

Throwing bats are the best way to move your work from the wheel to the shelf and back again if necessary. Check out the latest in bat materials and bat systems now available. Click here to download this article as a PDF.


Click here to download this article as a PDF.


Supply Room: Throwing Clays 
by Richard Zakin

Not all clays are created equal. When it comes to throwing, every potter has a different preference for how his or her clay needs to work. Even if you like your current clay, you may want to see if a better one isn’t just waiting for you. 


Tips from the Pros: Clay Molds and Wildflowers 
by David Scott Smith

For thousands of years, potters made bisque molds to save time when creating intricate decorations. With the advent of plaster a couple of centuries ago, bisque molds got pushed to back, but now they’re new all over again.

Instructors File: Making a Double-walled Vase 
by T. Dubis and Pam Luke

A double-walled vessel is like making a pot within a pot. T. Dubis demonstrates how to create this form by making it in four sections then assembling it.


Off the Shelf: Workshop Guide to Ceramics 
reviewed by Sumi von Dassow



Pottery Illustrated: Ancient Persian Vessels
Illustrated by Robin Ouellette



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