Sunday, 15 June 2014


I am currently not meant to be 'playing with clay' due to prescribed 'rest' for de quervain's tenosynovitis in my right thumb, caused by over-enthusiastic use of secateurs back in March. I am finding it hard to not use my right hand and very frustrating not to be making things; so thought I would use some of my free time to update my blog with work that I managed to make before the pain really kicked in.

Over the Easter holidays we had a brilliant holiday on Islay and Jura which included lots of beach combing. One of my finds was a large flat scallop shell which I have had fun pressing into slabs of clay and then moulding the 'shells' to create some bowls.

Small shell bowl - h~8cm
Shell bowl with glass - d~25cm

Not surprisingly, I found a lot of broken shells which I like because the internal spiral structure of the shell is exposed creating very interesting shapes to draw...

...and then use as inspiration for clay

Broken shell form - h~12cm, l~18cm

One shell I would love to have is a nautilus (must put this on my wish list for birthday or Christmas), the form was the inspiration for this piece.

Nautilus form (burnished & smoked) - h~21cm, w~18cm

This piece won 'best in show' at West Forest Potters Annual Exhibition as part of the Henley Arts Trail and was sold at the show.

Another piece of recent burnished and smoked work, this time inspired by the Maori fishhook design.

Hei Matau - h~24cm, w~16cm

My little heart bowls are a great way of experimenting with different surface techniques; this trio had wax resist painted on when leatherhard and were then painted with slip. After bisque firing they were dipped in vellum off-white glaze and then fired to stoneware. Must have been successful since they have all sold.

little heart bowls
Salt pig - h~9cm

I used the same technique to finish this experiment at making a 'salt pig', instead of slip cobalt oxide was used, giving a stronger blue.

For this one I used copper oxide to give the green colour.

Finally, a salt pig based on a shell form.

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