porcelain love 2

Once again Jack Doherty performing porcelain magic, this time with approximately 1.5 kilos of porcelain clay this time.

First you take 0.5 kilos of clay and place it on a wheel, then you add another 0.5 kilos and pat it down to the first…………

The cone shapes are to help the clay fit and to stop air bubbles forming – air bubbles and clay don’t mix well, the air bubbles expand during the firing of the clay and can cause the piece to explode – yep don’t ask me how I know!

The third 0.5 kilos being added and patted down.

Jack using a wooden tool that he found at the Leach Pottery where he is lead potter, and this was probably what it was intended to be used for, to help compress large amounts of clay on a wheel.

Patting the clay into a circular shape getting ready to throw.

Jack enjoying the comments from David Jones of Wolverhapton University who was putting questions to Jack from the audience.

Jack starting to hollow out the clay so he can start to lift the sides of the bowl.

Jack getting ready to start to lift the sides of the clay.

Lifting the sides.

You can see from this photograph that the sides are still very thick at this point, Jack needs to leave some weight in the bottom of the pot as the porcelain clay in the sides needs supporting from underneath.

This view via the screen and the camera you can see in the photograph shows how tall the sides now are.

Jack beginning to slice into the sides of the pot on the outside with his pastry cutter to smooth the sides of the pot.

Jack has opened out the pot using a wooden tool that he used with the smaller bowl to shape from the inside without touching the finished outside of the pot.  He has left the rim slightly uneven to show the progression of the clay and to give the pot a softer form.

You can see from the small bowl that David is holding how the pot on the wheel will be finished off with shaping and a foot ring.  This will be done after the pot has hardened off and can be turned upside down, put on a chuck, and the excess clay turned.

Here you can clearly see a combed mark that Jack has decorated his pot with.  Jack believes in one clay, one colouring, and one firing.  As the soda in the kiln brings out the colours of slip that Jack has used to spray on the outside of the pot adds texture, and tones there is minimal decoration on the pot itself.  Jack just leaves the porcelain and the soda to speak for themselves.

Finished pot, you can see how Jack has already cut away some clay from the bottom, but has to be careful as if he cuts too much away while the clay is wet the pot will slump.

Similar pots to the one Jack has just thrown.  The clay will shrink by up to 20% when it is fired.  You can clearly see the combed marks in the clay on the top row of pots.

Later a master class on slip trailing.

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