Monday, 12 August 2013

Experimenting with new forms

I'm exploring some different techniques at the moment, partly in the search for new forms. These pieces were made by wrapping clay around a wooden former and then cutting the clay with a wire:

Vase approx 11 inches tall

Vase, approx. 14 inches tall
Vase, approx. 18 inches tall

The results are quite exciting but am not sure how flexible this technique is. One is restricted to a great extent by the shape of the wooden former, and also the walls can end up being extremely heavy. I had to cut the piece in the first photo in half and hollow it out as the clay at the base was about 2 inches thick! I don't have a problem with heavy pieces per se, but it's important to be using the right kind of clay, and I'm not sure this body would fire at brick-like thicknesses without exploding.

The vase below was thrown and then the base was beaten into a much more rounded shape. Then I used carving tools and scrapers to refine the outline, which resulted in a nicely textured surface:

This urn-like piece was partly inspired by the huge stone containers in the Plain of Jars . I'm thinking of developing this form further by using a combination of throwing and coiling, which would allow me to make much taller vessels.

Our heat wave is well and truly over now and we're back to the usual British mix of sunshine and showers. Temperatures are cooling rapidly and this morning there was definitely an autumnal chill in the air.

Thanks for reading.


  1. How exciting to see all experiments you are doing! I also like trying something new. Thank you for sharing. : )

    1. Hi, Midori, thanks for your comments. I'm looking forward to firing these experiments, but they're taking an age to dry now the weather has turned very damp.