Sunday, March 29, 2009

Finished Pots

Here are some finished mugs, some of which were in the previous posting. There are three with a Tenmoku glaze that breaks to brown on the edges of the facets and flutes. Two of these were thrown with Laguna Dark Brown Stoneware and have a poured slip decoration under a clear glaze. One was faceted with the spiral wire I use to cut pots of the wheel head, leaving lines within each facet. This mugs was glazed with a transparent copper green glaze to highlight this detail. Lastly, there is a copper read tea pot that turned out especially nice. Still need to put a cane handle on it...Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Monday I threw about 20 mugs experimenting with some new mug forms. Tonight I fluted some of the mugs and pulled handles for all. I have not been real happy with my handles as of late, so I have been working on these some to make a handle more fitting of the form. These are just a few of the mugs I made, I am happy with the handles on these! I like the handles to be wide and comfortable in the hand. 3 fingers are best, 2 fingers work. The ridge in the middle is made with my thumb while pulling he handle and makes a perfect thumb rest for either a right or left hander.

For me, what completes the pot are the small details. For instance, using a coiled wire to cut the pieces off of the wheel head, leaving a wonderful wire pattern on the bottoms of the cups. Whether firing regular gas reduction or salt firing, this small detail makes all the difference in the finished product.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Cameras, Lighting, & Backgrounds!

Along with a new blog I have been working on getting set up shoot better pictures of my pots.

I just received a "Varitone" background today in the mail, which fades from jet black to pure white in foreground, a perfect neutral background for pottery!
I did quite a bit of shopping around to find the best price on this quite expensive background paper* and found the best price at

* it is not actually paper, but a heavy gauge plastic with a gray scale printed on it. Others made it seem like a thin Mylar type material, but I found that it is much thicker and seems to be very durable. Definitely worth the money spent!

I have just about finished building a overhead softbox using John Glick's excellent blog on photographing pots - "Fresh Plums". He has designed a softbox using 1/2" foam core, silicone, lighting components, and ordinary hardware. I built my box using black foam core, with mitered corners to eliminate any light leaks and used spray advesive to glue reflective aluminum foil on the inside of the box. I found a great lighting fixture at Home Depot which is intened for use on the bottom of a ceiling fan, which already had three light sockets evenly spaced. All in all, I spent about $50-80 on materials for this box (including floresecent lightblubs), compared to purchasing one for $800 at a photographic supply company.

Pictures of the box to come, as well as some example shots taken with my new equipment!