Daily Clay

Posted by on May 8, 2012 in Critique | 1 comment

There is a new app for pottery enthusiasts.  It is called ‘Daily Clay‘.  Everyday, you get a new image of a pot with information about the potter, ceramic composition, and firing methods.  The seven most recent images are available for viewing and the app also offers the option of collecting a gallery of up to 20 favorites.  I have been using it for about a week.  It is nice to get daily inspiration and since the number of images is limited, I have found myself considering the pots more closely than if I were inundated with images.  The app is free so if you have and IPad or IPhone, it is definitely worth...

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A Potter’s Most Valuable Skill

Posted by on Apr 22, 2011 in Carving, Creamer and Sugar Set, Critique, Glazes, How-to, Plates, Slip Trailing, Surface Decoration | 0 comments

The most beneficial thing that I have gained by attending workshops is participating in critiques.  And, although subjecting my pots to open opinion was uncomfortable, I have had really positive experiences and gained a lot of insight. Self-critiquing is a powerful skill that is worth incorporating.  Since I have been conducting self-critiques and critiques with Julie, I am more cognizant and focused about what I want to make.  I have begun to balance awareness of my weaknesses with recognition of my strengths.  And, I know what I want to do and what I want to try which makes me feel more confident. For me, there are two main categories – technical (throwing questions) and aesthetic (design questions).  One of the most important aspects of a self-critique is the ‘why’.  Asking ‘why’ makes the initial and emotional responses to the pot tangible.  It also keeps me from being lazy and casually dismissing a pot. Here are a few things that I think about when I critique my pots: Technical Is it proficiently thrown?  (functionality, weight, rim/foot thickness, handle width) What is the first part of the pot that I notice and why? How does it feel (sharp, heavy, smooth)?  Is that what I intended?  Does it work? What do I need to be mindful of the next time I make this shape (more clay, throw thinner, leave rim thicker, clean up better, stronger attachment)? Aesthetic Does this pot ‘work’?  Why/why not? Is it balanced?  Should it be? Does the surface embellishment enhance/hide the pot shape? Does the glaze hide/enhance the surface embellishment? Does the glaze enhance/hide the pot shape?  Is that good?  Why/why not? Does the transition from one glaze to another work?  Why/why not? Is there an opportunity to enhance contrast (use a satin/matte with a gloss glaze; add complementary color glaze; incorporate more texture) What will I change the next time I make this form (glaze, texture, shape)? What questions do you ask yourself about your pots? Creamer – Swirl designs make the creamer feel fun. The raspberry glaze breaks wonderfully over the raised slip – more successful harmony between glaze and texture. Bowl Set – The rim is a good choice for carving because it gives a defined space for texture. However, some of the carving is lost in the raspberry...

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