Archive for January 21st, 2009

Hope and Virtue

Wednesday, January 21st, 2009

I was putting handles on mugs while listening to NPR’s coverage of the inaguration. As the new president finished his speech I shifted gears and began making 15 lb platters. I had an idea I wanted to act on. I wanted to do something to commemorate his words and my feelings on this day.
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When I throw wide platters I like to place a ball of clay in the bottom after opening it to the desired width. I pound the clay while turning it to make sure it is stuck there. Then I smooth it into place with water and make it part of the bottom. This insures that the bottom is compressed and eliminates the possibility of “S” cracks in the bottom.
I pull the platter to the desired hight and leave a fairly thick rim from which to form an outer flange.
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The flange is formed by pulling the clay out rather than laying the clay down. Phil Rogers in his exellent book “Throwing Pots” illustrates and explains it like this.
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After the platter has set up a while but not too much I use rubber stamps to impress words into the flange. I made six of these today expressing things I felt about the inaguration.

Listening to: Windward Passage by Neil Young and the Ducks