Thursday, 22 November 2012


Well these past few weeks have been busy to say the least!
This week has been the final week of the Grays short courses and traditionally, the foundation class gets a wee Raku taster before Christmas. Due to the workshop being so busy, unfortunately none of their work to date has been glaze fired so they were looking forward to taking a piece home at last!
Wednesday evening was perfect for Raku; crispy cold, no wind and dark....

All set up and ready to go.... Lets hope there's enough gas left.

Ladies warming up by the kiln

Not long to go now.

Teacosy Success!

Good news last week came from Smart Consultants as I have been accepted into Teacosy for 2012!
Sad news is that this will be the last in its current form, it goes to show if you have great innovative ideas, they will be popular and imitated throughout.........
Teacosy will be in the Cowdray Hall again this year with the opening and exclusive preview on the Friday evening with the full day trading on Saturday.
I've been very busy with the short courses this week so stay tuned for photos of our raku firing and recent work....

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Short Courses and Other Stories.

Both my foundation and intermediate Ceramics classes at Grays have been going well. The foundation class have been working with soft slabs this week and have produced a lovely range of work. The intermediate class are working on a surface decoration project which includes the use of coloured slips and considering alternative surfaces. This has happily coincided with head tutor, Simon Ward's most recent charity project where he hopes to make around 100 cylindrical vases which will be decorated by Grays Staff and students, exhibited and then sold with proceeds going to the RNLI. I thinks most of the ones decorated tonight are already sold!

These pieces will be bisque fired and the clear glazed so therefore the colours will be much brighter. the dull grey clay will change to a cream colour so some imagination is required when making these pieces.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Knee Deep in Snowflakes

Short Courses and Christmas Prep......

My foundation Ceramics class at Grays School of Art have produced some lovely pieces during their first project so i thought I would post them here! It was a simple pinching project but they certainly took it to a fine conclusion...

Every year i say I need to start earler but it creeps in ever so quickly.... theres not enough hours in the day to do everything but I have finally finished the porcelain prep so now its time to get out the earthenware......

What they will look like finished.... hopefully

October Commissions

Its been busy lately, Ive been slowly finishing work for a big public art commission at Banff Hospital. The lead artist was Lynne at Curious Cranberry and I made 16 large porcelain tiles for wall hanging which were adorned with photographer Nicole Gildea's images of the local area.

It was a long haul, firing tiles of this size is a minefield of cracking and breaking but we got there eventually, below are some of the pics of the making process ...

Starts off with pristine flat plaster bats

The surface has to be damp or the clay will dry too quickly on the surface and cause fissures

Use cottling clay to build a dam

Slip has just been poured in

Leave to dry till it holds its shape

Leather hard and wiped to soften sharp edges

I use a drillbit to get the holes correct - the clay has to be at exactly the right hardness for this to work
Finished pieces

A Story of Banff

After the tiles were finished I was working of a another retirement commission, this time for Mr Dave Cordiner who was an art teacher at Ellon Academy.  Dave has many interests and his colleagues wanted a few things on his person as well as his distinctive shoes.....

Dave likes his badmintion and his Apple products......

A blue holdall and a printing roller was also requested