Thursday, June 23, 2011
Ceramic Rattle or Maraca
Here are the ceramic rattles I made the last couple of days. I made these in the shape of a wood maraca. I just read there is evidence that native Colombians may have used ceramic maracas in 1500. I put larger clay beads inside each one in hopes of deepening the sound. After the rattles are fired the rattle is held by the handle and shaken to produce a sound from the ceramic beads rotating around inside the hollow bowl.
I put a piece of paper towel inside to keep the beads from sticking to the floor of the bowl. I also put a hole at the end of the handle to let the air and burnt debris escape. After I put the two pinch parts together I carved patterns to decorate the pieces. I plan on leaving these natural without any glaze.
These two rattle are about 6.5 inches tall and 3.5 inches wide at the widest point. I seem to do better making something the first time; the second one sagged a bit where I joined the top and bottom. I plan to make other rattles in different shapes and covered with various colors of slip and sgraffito or scratch through them to make the design.
I can't wait to fire these to see what tone they'll make. Thanks for reading and for all your comments and encouragement.