As soon as I walked in the door I got this out and added coils to both pots. I can tell by the photo that I pushed both of these a bit too far. They will have to harden and by Monday I will have to paddle them into shape. The ‘top’ is about ready for a neck. The ‘bottom’ needs a bottom, then it can be turned over after it is hardened. So I think two more classes, or by this time next week, I should have it built.
We were told to take between 25 and 50 (or more) pounds of clay and compress them into a big block. We were able to mold it anything any shape we wanted (like a fish or a gorilla face, or whatever). I chose to make an lamp or a vase with abstract geometrical designs. When it dries a bit, we will take these and cut them in half and scoop out the excess clay and put it back together again. SO FUN!
This is a technique called Mish-ee-mow-kee. I do not know how it is really spelled and it is the first word that Google was not able to help me figure out. Either that, or I did not hear the correct pronunciation. First a design is carved into the leather-hard clay and a slip is applied. It is allowed to dry and then it is scraped. The colored slip will stay in the crevice. I’ve done this with beads before but I didn’t know it had a name. I’m getting so very smart in ceramics class. lol! (I found this link online and I bet this it) http://www.e-yakimono.net/guide/html/mishima.html
Here is the bowl that came out of the pit fire. If I had burnished it more it would have been more shiny. However, our professor gave us some wax to buff these up a bit. Having never done this before, it sure was fun. I’ve seen some very exquisite pieces before and I can see how people could get hooked doing this sort of thing.