Pottery life lessons

Every Saturday, every other Sunday and one Saturday night a month I teach a pottery workshop at Choplet.com that is meant predominantly for beginners. I mean, absolutely, 100% never touched clay before beginners. o As I go around helping everyone out I find I keep spouting the same pieces of advice that sound like they … Continue reading

Where I’ve been and what I’ve been doing

For several months now I’ve been working on an ongoing commission of 850 tumbler cups. You can read about the start of it here.  It has been an all encompassing process that only until recently, I’ve been able to emerge from. What I would like to discuss today are some technical tips for doing a large … Continue reading

What to do with a closed form

In last week’s post, I discussed making a closed form vessel and gave some reasons why you’d make one and what could be made. This week I’ll give a little how to on one of the options, a custom lid jar. Before that, I’d like to mention that 4 blog posts last month were featured … Continue reading

If one wall is good, 2 are better?

Last week I posted about how to make a chip n’dip. This week I’m taking that lesson one step further with making a double wall vessel. In my opinion, the point of creating a double wall piece isn’t for functionality or practicality, but rather for design and artistic expression. Creating a double wall mug or … Continue reading

Everyone loves a chip n’dip

Last week I went over how to make plates quickly and easily. This week we’ll extend that technique to the classic shape of the chip n’ dip. First off, it should be noted that this chip n’ dip (like almost everything else in pottery) creates different products depending on the size of the pieces. So at … Continue reading

Glazing, the elephant in the room

Once a session I give a long glaze lecture to my class at Choplet. I say a lecture, because that’s really what I do. I don’t just show how to stir glaze and dip pieces I really try to breakdown how to be successful with glazing. That’s what I want to go over with you … Continue reading

Can’t handle making handles

Let’s talk about making mugs, more specifically the handles. For years I avoided making mugs, simply because I found making handles to be a major pain in the ass. The main reason for this is that I was taught to pull handles, which is a viable method, but not necessarily the easiest, best or more … Continue reading

How to unF%&k your bowls

As promised in last weeks post, this week I will begin moving on to product specific lessons. This week will be bowls. I am going to start not with specific instructions on how to make a bowl, but rather with solutions to problems you may already be having. Bowls are one of the more intuitive shapes … Continue reading

How to pull a wall, without f%&king up

So this week I’ll be discussing the part of throwing guaranteed to both seduce, tease and frustrate you, pulling a wall. The thing to remember about pulling a wall is that its a different entity than centering and opening. This is often the part where students look at my funny when I am giving a … Continue reading

You’ve got to respect the process

(This is my last preface post about the “mental game” of pottery. Feel free to look back at previous posts to get caught up) One of the biggest ceramic piece killers is lack of patience. The other is expecting instant perfection. One could say they go hand in hand. Ultimately, its because the potter either doesn’t … Continue reading