Sunday, January 10, 2016

New Works, New Toy!

Over the holidays, I was catching up with  my ceramics magazines. (Yes, I read those. Duh!) In Clay Times, there was an article about tools for glaze mixing and application.

If you saw my post regarding the last time I mixed glaze, you'll have seen me covered in glaze splashes.

It's a really sexy look. Honest! *eye roll*

So below on the right, you can see my usual mixing device. On the left is the Jiffy Mixer

In theory, the stainless steel Jiffy Mixer should be able to mix my glazes without splashing all over the place. It should also be able to scrape the dry stuff off the sides of my glaze bucket while moving everything down, up and in from the sides, and not get chunks of plastic bucket in my glaze while mixing. Yes, at $50 it's a bit spendy, but that's what Christmas money is for, right? I'm looking forward to using it this next glazing cycle.

So I've been playing with stamping, like Gary Jackson does, because it looked like fun. And you know what? It is fun!
I threw the above teapot, deliberately leaving the lid a little large to allow for the clay shrinkage. I'm playing around with teapot shapes, too, while I have a little time. I haven't done a lot of teapots, so cutting the spouts to fit still takes me a bit of time. I always throw several spouts for two reasons: 1) if I mess one up, I have others to fall back on. 2) I like to have different - sized and -shaped spouts to see which one looks best on the teapot. I thought that with all the little stamped daisies, a short spout would look cute. What do you think?
I've been on a cup kick, lately. I stamped two of the ones above, and "scribbled" on the other one while my wheel was turning. I've found it makes for a good spot for the glaze to "break," which will give it both visual and tactile interest.
I'm experimenting with yunomi, too. Yunomi are those wonderful handle-less Japanese tea cups you see in all the Japanese restaurants.
The process of fitting the lid involves letting the clay dry slowly and trimming
it a little at a time. I throw it slightly large to allow for shrinkage.
I enjoyed the stamping so much, I decided to throw a couple of teapots and stamp them, too! Then there was the bowl, which seems to have turned out well, too.
After a week or so out in the studio, I decided they were ready to be brought in to dry in front of the fire.
Then I decided to unpack the kiln and dry all the rest of them while I was at it.
 I still have a ways to go before the kiln is full and ready to be fired, but I think this is a nice start!


  1. Love the stamping technique. Nice work.

    1. Thanks. I've been thinking of making some Hallowe'en-themed stamps and playing with those. I can see a jack-stamped teapot and mug, can't you? :)

  2. These look fantastic! What will they look like after the firing, I wonder? Ever since studying ceramics in archaeology classes I've thought the whole concept behind a clay slip as...kind of like magic! Or at least alchemy. So, you my dear, must have magic in your fingers!

    1. Thank you!
      I have one, maybe two more layers of the kiln to fill before these get fired, and I keep thinking about the glazes I might use once they're bisqued. I literally have dreams about it!

      And at some point, I would like to play with slipware. But the thing is, I'm scared to start, so I procrastinate! LOL. I'll get to it at some point!


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