Thursday, May 5, 2016

Technique and Resource

amy myers, handmakers world, pottery, earthenware, ceramics, coil, coiled, clay, traditional
recent work, unfired earthenware vase
Working away...

I am finally making some progress again with the techniques involved in coil-built pottery.  For a while it seemed as if I was getting nowhere, actually losing ground when I attempted to push the technical boundaries.  My latest vase is much more controlled, and now I look forward to the next!

The breakthrough was due to taking some time to refresh my technical memory.  Once more I had a close look at two very helpful videos available via YouTube.  One is the old National Park Service documentary on the great potter of San Ildefonso, Maria Martinez.  The other is footage of a workshop with Mata Ortiz master potter Jerardo Tena, in conjunction with the Orchard Valley Ceramics Art Guild.  I am most grateful to the people who created these videos and have made them available for potters and, indeed, anyone at all interested in the craft.

Both have extensive footage of the hands at work, showing the movements and the response of the clay.  In addition, both (and particularly the workshop with Sr. Tena) contain descriptions of the clays used and other information about handling the materials.  I am including the links in case they may be of help or interest to my readers, as they certainly have been for me!