Ceramics 2011


Every summer I enjoy working with clay. I am certainly no potter or ceramicist but it is fun. These pieces and more can be seen in an earlier post  in their green state.

I think the slip made of some indigenous clay turned out quite well. Unfortunately the clay was not compatible with the glaze and it crackled. This isn’t such a bad thing as it actually looks quite nice but it renders the work unsuitable for foodstuffs.

I like the form of the cup in the top right hand corner. I think this years pottery will look very much like this one!

Just as it starts, it’s over…

It seems like it has been a short time at the ND studio. On the other hand it has been intense and I’ve been able to put some time in at the wheel and behind the camera.

Ceramics started out a bit slow as it always seams to as I have to relearn everything I’ve forgotten about the way it feels to center the clay and slowly work it up into the form I’m looking for. One of my goals this year was to throw a few more coffee cups and to work with a slip made from clay found locally. The first part went well as the cups I’ve thrown appear to have dried well and the handles do not show any cracking where they attach to the cup. The second part appears to have gone well too but I will not know for sure until after they are fired. in order to work with scrifitto, or at least to have a direction in which to go, I selected a barley motif and used it in a variety of ways. This motif found a place on almost all of the cups and on a small flowerpot.

Northwest McIntosh-20110716-00180

I worked with two different clays this summer; a white and a red. I generally preferred the red as it felt smoother as I threw with it and did not lose its structural integrity quite as readily.

Northwest McIntosh-20110716-00181

At the beginning of this summer I picked up a new lens and a few filters. The lens has a fairly good macro feature and I used that as much as I could. I found it difficult to focus as the feel of the zoom was about the same as it was to focus. None the less I dug up some subjects I thought might be worth a photo for their potential for interpretation as well as simple documentation. I’ll develop the film next year and will see how well the photos turn out then. My initial opinion is that I should have shot in color rather than black and white. The muted color seemed to work well with the subjects as seen through the viewfinder. Of course, I can only develop black and white so the idea of shooting in color is a bit of a moot point. The suspense would still be there, however, so perhaps I’ll consider it next year depending on how the b/w turns out.

Pots thrown

A few pots thrown so far. I will make no claims as a ceramicist (potter) but I will admit to a love of the medium. Spending time on the wheel seems to disengage the mind from everyday conserns and involves it in an immediate task that is cognitive, physical, and rewarding. Time passes quickly as the left brain is disengaged and the collection of shapes on the drying shelf grows.