Thursday, December 3, 2009

Crazy for Clay

cassius basaltic clay pinch bowl, 4 x 9 inches

Quite by accident, one of my glazes formed a unique surface on a very black clay, cassius basaltic. I called the surface moon craters. Ever since then I've been thinking of how I could use the moon craters to advantage. I just couldn't get the unique surface out of my mind and really wanted to attempt to replicate the moon craters.

sketch for cassius basaltic pinch bowl

I planned on making a tall coiled vase based on a couple of drawings in my sketch book, but the piece I ended up making was a wide pinch bowl. Since I'm in a motorhome with limited space I decided to use the pinch bowl. For my sketch above, imagine the background being the black clay and the stripes and dots being white.

moon craters unique glaze surface (interior)

My sketch book is filling up with drawings for the cassius basaltic clay with moon craters and I have plans to make some tiles and groups of tiles. Of course I had to get some white clay for the stripes and will have to use that up too.

Not sure where I will store the greenware while it is drying. We have our three cats in the motorhome, so everything drying must be put some place they can't get to it. I just couldn't stop myself from getting a couple of bags of clay and trying a few of my ideas. I also have a few ware boards, my tool box, and glazes.

Texas white pinch bowl, 3 x 7 inches

Here's another pinch bowl I made today with Texas white clay. I've never tried this clay before. After I made the bowl I thought it would look good with a handle across the top. I want to make the handle look like it's woven from reeds. I have a few more ideas about the handle.

sketch for handle on Texas white pinch bowl

We plan on leaving in about two more weeks, hopefully they'll be dry by then I can at least get them bisqued. Then perhaps I can find a place along the way to get them fired. What do you think, am I crazy for clay or what?


  1. You are definately addicted to clay :) Me too. Your plans and pots look great.
    Is Texas White Clay simular to bmix?

  2. I envy you this moment of time you are in. It is so nice to draw the pots before you make them, I never seem to get to do this, everything is all such a rush at the moment.

  3. So many great possibilites.
    Putting things to paper is great because it helps keep you active on your current ideas and gets you fired up.
    Two weeks to go!
    I bet you are ready to move along and see what is in store down the raod.
    I like the moon craters and like that you will try to do something with them.

  4. Girl, you really are addicted, pinch pots in a motor home! Sounds like where my life will be a few years down the road :) I like the tile sketches, my students are making tiles like crazy right now. I have made circles like your sketches before and pushed them out from the back side to give them a raised surface, really cool look. I could see your craters doing that.

  5. go moon craters!

  6. Hi Cindy, thank, I am having a lot of fun I just can't help myself. I am not sure if Texas white is similar to B-Mix I am assuming it is. It was made by the same manufacturer as the cassius so I thought I would try it. It supposedly fires pretty white like the B-Mix and doesn't have a lot of grog in it, which is what I wanted since I was going to make some slip with it too. The B-mix did make really good slip when I used it before.

    Hi Kitty, thanks, I envy you your large pots. If I lived closer I would come over and take lessons on how to make such big pots. I think I need to practice every day to get better.

    Hi Meredith, thanks, I wish we were moving directly into a place with a studio already set up. Now that I don't have the responsibility of my property to keep up I find I have so many ideas and I feel like I need to make them right now. I would just as soon find a place to live and then travel around - amazingly Gary feels the same way, so we shall see what happens.

    Hi Tracey, thanks, clay sure is so much fun. That is a good idea making the tiles more dimentional by pushing the circles out. Of course my drawings are flat because they are on paper and sometimes the work takes on a life of it's own and it doesn't turn out exactly like the drawing, but I find it is good for me to draw a few things in my sketch book because it reminds me of my thoughts for the future.

    Hi Jim, thanks, hopefully I can repeat this happy accident.

  7. Sometimes accidents are the best inspiration! I saw this article on CNN this morning and thought of your upcoming road adventures: Top 10 cool small towns:

  8. Hi Cindy, thanks I will check it out.


I love suggestions, questions, critiques, thanks for your comment