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I work in the garage I share with my husband's things so space is at a premium! I have an old and very noisy wheel which was very kindly given to me by my sister in law some years ago and which I love! Buckets of glaze and other materials and tools fill every available space and I love being in there! Who would have thought that the dusty garage would become my favourite place to spend time in my house! The kiln, named 'Prometheus' by my brother, is a newer acquisition and lives in an old brick built garden shed. (Prometheus was the Titan God of fire and is said to have formed human kind from clay!) Ceramics have taken over our house! 


the studio

the process


It takes a long time to make a piece of pottery!
Firstly I need to cut, wedge (knead) and, if I'm being accurate, weigh the clay!
Next I will put the clay on the wheel, centring it to make throwing easy and then 'pull up' a few times to ensure that the clay is ready to throw.
Then I will throw the form .... how I do this depends on what I want to make!
Once the vessel has been thrown it needs to be wired off the wheel and left to dry until a 'leather hard' stage when the pot can then be turned to get rid of any excess clay and to balance the pot by perhaps adding a foot ring for bowls etc. Slip decoration is added at this leather hard stage before the pots are left to dry. Drying can take up to a week or more depending on weather conditions.
At this point the pots are known as green ware and are very fragile. The first firing now takes place. The process takes approximately 10 1/2 hours up to 1060 degrees C followed by another 12 hours of cooling. I often open the kiln at 100 degrees (but no sooner!) as it is always hard to wait!
Each pot is now individually glazed either by dipping or pouring to ensure an even coat. After this glaze has dried the pots are again fired to 1230 degrees, another 24 hour process until the kiln is cool enough to open!

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