Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Picture boxes

Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair - 2010

Lidded vessels

I am usually driven by the need to express myself with clay, which may come from an idea within or something I have read or seen. But with these lidded vessels I have been driven by the making process. After sitting on the wheel trying to improve my throwing skills I just wondered if I could make a lid to fit a cup (after having placed a circular brooch onto a cup and thinking it looked good!) I made about 20 or so different shaped vessels with varying lid styles. Usually I love not having a plan when I am on the wheel, working quite freely but with these vessels I was having to concentrate very hard and measure precisely (not me at all!)
I had some disasters with the lids sticking in place during the stoneware firing and was told to just tap with a rolling pin to free the lids. 10 broken pots later I realised this was very unsatisfying for me and the poor pots!! After a desperate e-mail to my uni lecturer Alex I was told that by just applying a small amount of alumina to the lids the sticking would be rectified. Ever since then I haven't had to take a rolling pin to any of my pots!!


Brown earthenware bottles with carved detail and a turquoise glaze. Would you believe with all three bottles I have used the same glaze! It just depends how thick it is applied. I am really trying to exploit this quality of the glaze by carving out detail in the pots for the thick glaze to sit in.

Porcelain bottles with stripes - a new style for me. Its not floral!!

Something new for me. I usually throw my bottles on the wheel but after having taught a group how to slab build it inspired me to have a go with porcelain. Really want to have another attempt at this way of making. With the bead detail I created an indent around the whole disk which allowed the silk thread to sit inside it. This has worked really well - a nightmare to thread but looks good!

I threw this bottle in two halves and attached together before turning on the wheel. It allowed me to make a larger vessel than normal but my aim is to generally get throwing on a larger scale.

Bud vase - trying out new inlay colours. I usually use green and blues but these reds and browns have worked well.

Nestled bottles

The bottles always look good when they are nestled together. I made some shallow trays for this purpose. Still in the early design stages but I really like the results and will work on this idea further. One bottle on the tray looks equally nice.


Essesntially the Buddahs came about after realising my bottles looked quite like people. Which got me thinking on the wheel to close up the bottle form, thus creating a head. I then carve detail into the surface and infill the lines with coloured clay, then use underglazes and oxides to create more detail. I then finish off the Buddha with silk thread and beads.


New brooches that have essentially been inspired by my bottles with silk thread and bead detail. Quite excited by this new work and think there is plenty of room for improvement and development.

Giant porcelain and earthenware button brooches with inlaid flower detail and silk thread