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  • Can you explain the process of making a piece?
    The creation process is similar for all forms, be it a tiny sake cup or a large platter. It begins by "wedging" the clay. The motion is somewhat similar to kneading bread dough. Wedging removes air bubbles and aligns the clay platelets, both of which make throwing a much smoother endeavor. With the clay wedged, it can now be thrown on the wheel. The clay is first centered, then it is opened, pulled upwards, and shaped into whatever it's final form will be. If it is a lidded jar, a gauge is used to measure the needed diameter for the lid, and the lid is then thrown following the same steps as above. There are a variety of tools used at this stage that assist with shaping and smoothing. When finished, the piece is removed from the wheel head and allowed to dry out to what potters refer to as "leather hard." At this stage the clay is still moist, but firmly holds it's shape. Once the piece is leather hard it can be trimmed and have any attachments, such as handles, added on. Trimming is done on the wheel with a sharp tool that cuts off any excess clay and refines the form. I "pull" all of my handles. Pulling handles is done by taking a carrot shaped lump of clay and literally pulling it through the V between your thumb and index finger to elongate it. Once pulled, handles are allowed to dry slightly, cut to length, shaped, attached to the mug, and then refined. At this stage, a pot's form is complete. It is allowed to dry out entirely and then fired for the first time. This first firing, called the "bisque firing", removes moisture from the clay and prepares it for glazing. After coming out of the bisque firing, the bisqueware is ready for decoration and glaze. Some of my pieces use hand cut resists, which are each individually placed before glazing and then removed after glazing to reveal the bare clay below. I apply my glazes either by dipping or spraying. The technique I choose depends on the final look I am trying to achieve and the properties of each glaze. Finally, the glazed bisqueware is fired again to a temperature of about 2200 degrees Fahrenheit. This final firing vitrifies the clay, making it non-porous, melts the glaze, and fuses the glaze to the surface of the piece. Once cool, the piece is checked over for any blemishes and the bottoms are lightly sanded.
  • How long does it take to make a piece?
    Pottery is a process with many steps, so while a simple cylinder, such as for a mug, only takes about 5 minutes to throw on the wheel, it may take anywhere from 20-40 minutes to create a mug start to finish. This time is usually spaced over three days. On the first day, the piece is thrown and set on a ware board to firm up. On the second day, it is trimmed, a handle is attached, and it is set aside to dry for the bisque firing. On the third day, after the piece has been bisque fired, it is decorated, glazed, and set aside for the bisque kiln. Altered pieces, larger forms, lidded jars, and more complex forms naturally take longer to create. Adding resist decoration to a large platter can take well over an hour.
  • Do you accept commissions for custom work?
    Yes, I do. If you're looking for sets, customization, a different color or size, etc I can probbaly accomodate you. Just send me an email and we can discuss what you are looking for.
  • Is your pottery dishwasher safe?
    Yes, absolutely.
  • Is your pottery oven safe?
    Yes, it is. I recommend keeping the temp below 350 F out of an abundance of caution.
  • Is your pottery microwave safe?
    Yes, it is. That said, it may get hot to the touch, so use caution and common sense as you would with all hot foods and liquids.
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