Thursday, May 24, 2012

Lovely Lizards and a Bevy of Bowls

I've just finished 18 weeks that I will cherish for the rest of my life!  My daughter and I took another ceramics class together and had a blast!   This is the second semester we've done this.  I feel so lucky to have a daughter that loves to hang out with her mom.  I treasure every moment of it!  She'll be transferring to a university in a few months.  So, this will be the last time we'll get to do this for a while.  That chokes me up a bit but I know we have lots of new adventures ahead of us.

If you're a regular visitor to my blog, you may recall a blog post I did a few months ago about a lizard I had sculpted in class.  I had a lot of fun making it and was pretty pleased with the results.  Since then, he's undergone a bit of a change...glazing.  It didn't turn out quite like I'd planned.  He was supposed to be sort of a greenish color and the cup was supposed to be a deep chocolate brown.  Being the beginner that I am and that the glazes aren't always reliable, I ended up with this...

It's not what I had envisioned but it's kinda cool.  I made it for hubby and he really likes it.  So, that means it's a success.

That lizard inspired others in my class and other classes that saw it.  Someone even called me the "lizard master" one evening during class.  That was fun!   

I enjoyed sculpting the first one so much that I was anxious to make another one and I did.  This time it adorned my very first teapot.  The spout was challenging but I did it.  The lid was challenging too and it came out a bit large.  That made it the perfect place for a lizard to sit!

I chose the same glaze, Winokur Yellow, that I used on my Acorn Mugs last semester.  I usually like the yellow color with bits of rusty orange.  And, it's usually a reliable glaze.  However, it seems that the bag of clay I used on this and a few other projects had a lot of iron in it.  So, they came out of the kiln with lots of freckles!

I'm really happy with the shape of the teapot, the lizard, and the yellow and orange colors. 
But, I'm still trying to fall in love with all those freckles.

The yellow parts are satiny smooth and make the lizard fun to pet!

I'm planning to make a pot of tea tonight.  I can't wait to try out my new teapot!

I love his shape.  So cute!

One of the freckles could be an eye!

I practiced a LOT on the wheel to learn and improve my skills.  The teacher was very encouraging about not worrying about assignments but to just keep working because it's the best way to improve.  I appreciated that.  It made the semester very productive.  I made close to 40 projects!
One of my goals for the semester was to make a large bowl that was big enough to make a salad for the family.  That's not as easy as it sounds.  The bigger the project, the harder it is to make on the wheel.  So, I practiced a lot and made a lot of bowls!

I tried to make a set to go with my Acorn Mugs and Lizard Teapot.  I ended up with three that are almost exactly the same size. I made them with the same bag of clay I used on the teapot and they ended up with a lot of spots.

I named the set, "Funny Freckles".

These bowls were made with a different bag of clay and the color turned out great...more like what I'd hoped for the above projects.  I like it when I can get a perfect little spiral in the bottom and get it to show up. 

I had a lot of fun making these.  I call them, "Honey Pot Vases". 
As you can see, these were made with clay from two different bags!
I think they'll look really cute with flowers in them.

Here's another "Honey Pot Vase" glazed in "Woo blue".  I love the blue/green drips.  So pretty!

Woo Blue glaze seems to be a bit unpredictable.  It turned out mostly brown in the vase above.  But, in this bowl, it turned out more blue.  I love that color!  The toasty brown edge is a nice touch.  The inside is solid white.

I named this one, "Zen".

This bowl turned out pretty big.  It'll work for a nice personal salad.  I can't wait to try it!  The glaze I used was supposed to be green but I think i got it a little too thin.  I love the tan color and the simple, natural look of it though.

I have LOTS more projects but I figured this was enough for now.
It seems to have been a very productive semester for a lot of students and the kilns are so backed up that they're still working on firing everything.  So, I don't have my biggest bowl and some other projects back yet. 
I can't wait to see how they turn out!  It still amazes me what can be made with mud and heat!  And, how great it feels to use a ceramic piece that I made with my own two hands.


Cindie said...

Your pottery pieces are wonderful! Love those lizards!

jomomma said...

Beautiful work! I just love hand made pottery, it's so comforting.

Benita said...

I love the freckle pot and bowls and that one spot does look like an eye on the lizard.

I think my favorite bowls are the one with blue on the outside and white on the inside and the greenish one on the bottom.

Sandra said...

you've inspired me to look for some pottery classes around here! I love the pieces you've crafted. And if you're having problems loving the freckles, feel free to ship that teapot off to me - I adore it!

Roxie said...

I am SO impressed. When I go to the Pottery Guild show, I am astounded at how different each person's creations can be.

Your lizards are too cool for school and for teapot is awesome! Would you ever consider trading for knitted or embroidered things? I adore hand-thrown ceramics.

Life Looms Large said...

Wow - these are amazing! Love the lizards!!!!

It must be hard to deal with the uncertainty of glaze colors. My brief (1 day) foray into pottery taught me that glaze makes everything better.....but maybe that's because the potter applied the glazes, not me!!!

I love pottery bowls!


Anonymous said...

Okay, now I can't decide which one is my favorite, the honey pot glazed with Woo Blue or the pots with the lizard on them! What fun! These are great!

Vanessa in Oklahoma