Project of the Month: September 2021

1. Prolific Pottery

Sorry this is so late, I’ve been dithering about narrowing down the options to get back into pottery. It has to be pottery to tie in with launching my new pottery blog launch. So it comes as several items to make before the month is out. The first is to throw a pot but as I’m not optimistic about being successful at all with my new wheels… I decided to also challenge myself to a couple of other challenges  in the hope of success with them.

I did have a go with my £19 wheel the other day and after a couple of hours or so I ended up with the one below. Centring was hard enough, coiling up I found nigh on impossible and getting the right amount of water so the clay is malleable enough but not so wet it slops about or flies off onto the wall of my kitchen also proved difficult. Note to self. Never use it in the kitchen again and cover everything in sheets of plastic when using in the shed. Still. It was a start and it’s almost an egg cup.

The second challenge is to make three vessels that fit neatly inside each other which was inspired by The Great Pottery Throwndown TV programme. Not all their challenges appeal to me, but this one ticked all the right boxes along with making a chess set out of clay which I’m passing on for now. I love the programme for its ideas and not least because it doesn’t just focus on thrown pots. Sadly I couldn’t find a clip to include of the Russian doll challenge which I think is what it was called. If I do I’ll include it later this month as my projects get going.   

I also discovered that over the years I’ve not made many slab pots and hardly any coil pots, so I’ll be making more of those for my pottery blog. And a few years back my sister, who was studying psychology, had been encouraged to explore creative therapeutic ideas. So she went on a holiday to do just that and ended up making a clay sculpture blindfolded. So we both did that one afternoon but I never did another. So that is the last part of my challenge blindfolded creations in the form of a coil pot and a sculpture.

As I hate wasting any clay at all along the way I may well use up excess clay in one of these ways. Above are some tiles and eggs  I made by rolling out soft clay left over from other work to pick up the dust and debris while cleaning up. I also drop dried out clay into a bowl with water and we’ll soaked mushy cardboard to make paper clay. And finally I make miniature things when there isn’t enough clay to make a tile as little gifts as thank yous to friends, family and anyone else who I feel merits it.