Making and maintaining pottery is one of the oldest hobbies in the world, dating back to when man first began to make use of tools in every day life. Today, pottery is not quite as important as it once was in terms of survival, but it does make an incredibly relaxing hobby that everyone should give a try at least once.
Pottery is made up of plates, dishes, cooking pots, cups, and storage jars that are made out of clay. People use clay to make kitchen pottery for a variety of different reasons. Clay is extremely cheap and can be found all over the world, and just about anyone can make a simple pot out of it. It’s also waterproof when made properly, and it’s also relatively easy to clean.
First popularised during the 19th century in Straffordshire in the West Midlands of England, the process of spongeware is still a popular technique used today. In Straffordshire, the high clay content of the ground meant that the area established some of the most successful potteries in the world including Wedgwood, Dalton, and Minton. All three of these potteries exhibited the most intricate and ornate hand painted designs and spongeware can be seen as a resistance of this conformity. The technique to create spongeware is far simpler and requires less patience to create beautiful and interesting pieces. While the technique went out of vogue for some time, the revival of this technique can largely be attributed to British-born Emma Bridgewater who launcher her spongeware ceramics business in 1985.
The coiling technique has been used to create a variety of pottery forms for thousands of years and there is a reason why it remains popular today – it’s one of the easiest pottery techniques to learn and master. Here we will discuss the origins of the technique, why it’s a good technique to use, and how to create large pottery using the coiling technique.
Potters generally make use of a wheel or produce freeform pieces by hand for one-of-a kind art, but what do you do if you’re looking to create multiples of the same pieces? Unless you’re a master of free-forming or using a wheel, your pieces will likely not be identical and it will also be a highly labour intensive process. Instead, if you’re looking to create pieces again and again, making use of a press mould is your best bet. Here are our top tips and tricks for using a press mould.
There are many different types of kilns that are used for ceramic arts. There are two types of kilns, the continuous or tunnel kiln and the periodic or intermittent kiln. Continuous kilns are continuously firing and are never cool. The items that are to be fired are placed into cars and then slowly move through the kiln. Continuous kilns are mainly used for industrial manufacturing. Periodic kilns are used most often by potters, and fire intermittently. The items are loaded into the kiln; the temperature is set, and then cooled. (more…)
Types and Methods of Glazing
Glazes are made from a type of glass especially made in such a way that they adhere onto the pottery surfaces. When this glass is liquid it is stiff and will stick to the vertical surfaces of the pots when they are being fired. There are various ways of applying glaze. (more…)
Why Are Chinese Ceramics So Valuable?
You have probably heard of the absolutely outrageous prices that ancient Chinese ceramics sell for. If you haven’t, consider that the Meiyintang ‘Chicken Cup,’ a small, white ceramic cup with a few hand painted images, sold for $36.5 million. This auction was held at Sotheby’s in 2014, setting a world record. (more…)