Theme: Surface Decoration

Decorating ceramic surfaces provides infinite possibilities for expression. Whether you add or subtract clay, impress, trail, or print, any process is worthy of exploration. In this issue you’ll find advice on using stencils, photo lithography, textured earrings and slip trailing just to name a few.

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Using Stencils
by Hanna Lore Hombordy

Stencils, in combination with airbrushing, spraying, sponging, painting and stippling underglaze or other colorants on clay, provide vast potential for artistic expression. Hanna Lore provides how to information on how you can strategically place stencils to get shading, introduce motion and enhance illusion.

Photo Lithography Transfer on Clay
by Kristina Bogdanov

After studying pottery then falling in love with printmaking, Kristina wanted a way to combine two-dimensional media with her three-dimensional work. Her work in layering images utilizing photo transfer techniques resulted from her experimenting with Xerox images and ceramic inks.

Impressive Earrings
by Frank James Fisher

Throughout history, artisans have created clay jewelry. Melissa Rickman’s small ceramic abstract forms have become wearable art and Frank provides a detailed step-by-step how-to of her jewelry making technique.

Slip Trailing for Beginners
by Judi Munn

While many potters think of slip as the “glue” that holds their work together, Judi Munn thinks of slip as wonderful decorating tool that allows for tremendous personal expression. She discusses slip trailers, commercial applicators and several techniques to get you started.

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Tips from the Pros: Pushing the Envelope
by Mark Gordon

You never know what the limits are for working in clay and Mark Gordon proves that with a technique inspired by Egyptian masons. He uses his mortar construction technique to build large sculptures composed of bone-dry pieces. Find out how to create your own work using this technique.

In the Mix: Sedimental Journey
by Jonathan Kaplan

Getting rid of ceramic glaze materials in the studio is a bit more complicated than recycling clay. Unknown materials and issues about toxicity require a proper disposal protocol. Jonathan provides advice and includes suggestions from readers on how you can dipose of or recycle your materials.


Tools of the Trade: Rejuvenate Your Kiln
by Arnold Howard

Your kiln will last a long time even if it has broken bricks and a rusted case. Arnold Howard of Paragon Kilns offers sage advice on how to improve, maintain and extend the life of your electric kiln.


Instructors File: Surface Deep
by Vince Pitelka

This overview of surface decoration serves as an exhaustive technique-filled glossary of the myriad ways work can be decorated. It includes descriptions of coil patterns, pinch/smear patterns, paddled facets, colored clays, combed effects, modeling tools, roulettes, coggles, stamps, ribs, carving, faceting, fluting, incising, scraping, appliqué, sprigging, and modeling.


Off the Shelf: Back to School
Review by Sumi von Dassow

Sumi reviews two books written specifically for K-5 art teachers: “Clay Connections” by Craig Hinshaw and “The Great Clay Adventure” by Ellen Kong.

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