Big Ceramic Store Blog

Monthly Archives: April 2016

  • Have you ever wanted to make a tall or really wide piece, but your clay gets too flimsy and the piece falls apart? Well, in today's post, I'm going to show you how to add slabs to a thrown base and top to make a tall jug.

    Whoever invented this method was a genius! I've had several requests over the last few years for large jugs however; I don't throw large pieces often so I find it a bit challenging. I discovered this method a while back, and have used it a couple times.

    Are you ready to be amazed at how simple a 16" jug can be? Well, grab your coffee and apron and let's get to the studio!

    • Lynn | #

      I can't for the life of me figure why you would show pictures of all the separate pieces and not show us a pic of the finished project so we can see what you were going for. It's an interesting concept, but I am always disappointed in a blog, video, etc that does not show finished product. You wonder if it didn't work out well in actual practice.

  • This post was inspired and assisted by Jan Moore at Moore Colorful, Jan Moore. If you’re interested in posting on our blog, shoot us an email at bcscommunity@bigceramicstore.com!

    Big Ceramic Store (BCS) customer Jan Moore has graciously shared directions for making one of her beautiful hand-built ceramic handbags! The detail and lifelike presence is an amazing sample of the ability to turn clay into almost anything your mind can conjure up!

    Ready for an exciting and rewarding challenge? Grab your coffee, a pencil, paper, and your favorite fabric, and follow along on this incredible journey!

  • Here it is... Group 5 of our series showing off our customer's work! Again, I cannot believe the talent in our customers! Between techniques, colors, inspiration and imagination ... I've had my eyes opened to a whole new world of opportunity.

    Take a look at these pictures!

     

    Carrie Althouse Carrie Althouse

     

    Candy Sidner, Ph.D Candy Sidner, Ph.D

     

    Brad Lee Henry Brad Lee Henry

     

    Susan Branum Susan Branum

     

    Susan Branum Susan Branum

     

    KimmBerly Loane Studios KimmBerly Loane Studios

     

    Michele EA Norton Michele EA Norton

     

    Lisa Harnish Lisa Harnish

     

    Linda Flynn Linda Flynn

     

    Lauri Schlekeway Lauri Schlekeway

     

    Joe Friend Joe Friend

     

    Don't forget... we will be featuring some of our customers' work, the products and techniques they used, and maybe even step-by-step instructions in future posts, so keep an eye out for them!

    Do you want to submit your work, or possibly write an article for our blog? Shoot us an email at bcscommunity@bigceramicstore.com.

  • Some of us get really creative with glazing, some of us don't... either way, waxing the bottom of your pots is essential.

    Earlier this week we talked about bisque firing, so today we'll go over what to do with your pots once they come out of the bisque. Steps need to be taken to get them ready for glazing and the glaze firing. Waxing the bottom (or where they may touch a kiln shelf) is one of those steps, and making sure your shelf has been washed with a good quality kiln wash is another.

    Although many potters have their own unique way of waxing, I'm going to stick with a few of the basic methods I use in this post.

    Grab your coffee and follow me to the studio for some helpful tips!

  • The primary purpose of a bisque fire is to remove water from the clay, break down organic materials, and turn the clay into ceramic, making the piece more durable and ready to accept stains and glazes.

    How do you know when the clay is ready to be bisque? Well, there are several ways, but the easiest by far is to place the pot against your cheek. If the pot is still cold, it's not ready... if it's about room temperature, it's ready to go.

    Here are some tips on loading your kiln for a bisque fire. On Friday, we'll go over what to do once you remove them from the bisque fire, and how to prepare them for that final step... the glaze firing!

  • If this is the first time you're visiting our blog, you've stopped by at the right time! We're doing a series of posts showing off our customers work, and what the right store can do for you.

    If you're a potter, or considering pottery... Big Ceramic Store is your "Go To" store. We offer a wide variety of tools, equipment and supplies to get you started or keep you going. We also offer a ton of resources on our "How-To" page and our blog.

    Check out some of the crazy talent our customers have, then visit our online store to pick up the supplies you need to make your own.

     

    Jim Dobbins Jim Dobbins

     

     

    JigsUpArt JigsUpArt

     

     

    Shubo Zhao Shubo Zhao

     

     

    Sande French-Stockwell Sande French-Stockwell

     

     

    Mason Wills Mason Wills

     

     

    Marta Morganroth Marta Morganroth

     

     

    Lisa Madden Lisa Madden

     

     

    Lauri Schlekeway Lauri Schlekeway

     

     

    Gabriel Kellner Gabriel Kellner

     

     

    David Chrzan David Chrzan

     

     

    Cheryl Farrens Cheryl Farrens

    Don't forget... we will be featuring some of our customers' work, the products and techniques they used, and maybe even step-by-step instructions in future posts, so keep an eye out for them!

    Do you want to submit your work, or possibly write an article for our blog? Shoot us an email at bcscommunity@bigceramicstore.com.

  • My grandchildren love to play in the studio and make pottery projects for mommy, nana, pappy, sissy etc... Why not put that to good use this year for Mother's Day? I know when my kids were growing up, I loved handmade gifts, they were the perfect expression of their personality.

    A few supplies and some beautiful charms for a necklace, bracelet, or earrings can be had! Personalized, colorful, whimsical, or heart-felt... the choice is up to you and the kids. By the way, your mom may enjoy a few of her own.

    Grab your coffee and follow me to the studio. We can practice a few before you invite the kids out so it looks like you've been doing these for years!

  • I love what I do, and enjoy coming up with new ideas or trying out new glazes and techniques. The thought of a "free" day in my studio is more appealing than a banana split, but I don't know if there is any aspect of art I love more than being able to share it with children.

    Recently, several home school groups in the area began scheduling workshops for their students. The children range in ages 2-18, so the projects have to accommodate that. We've done wind chimes, pinch pots, and just yesterday, a group of seventeen kids did mugs!

    The kids (and parents) have a blast, and I get to witness some amazing talent. The thought that one or two of these kiddos will go on to pursue a career in art is so exciting, and to think I may have a hand in helping them is beyond humbling.

    With that being said, we're going to do the mug project so you can share with the kids in your life. Put on your creative hat and follow me out to the studio...

  • Hopefully you're following along with our "Customers Show Us Their Work" series, the view so far has been extraordinary! We've shared some pretty amazing pieces so far, and we have a lot of pictures left to share with you.

    Here is Group 3 in the series... Enjoy, be inspired, try new things...

    Agostina-Weler Agostina-Weler

     

    David Milazzo David Milazzo

     

    Helen Seebold Helen Seebold

     

    JD Moore JD Moore

     

    Joan Smykowski Joan Smykowski

     

    John Dixon John Dixon

     

    Melynda Steward Melynda Steward

     

    Palul Rideout Palul Rideout

    /
     

    Rick Reiff Rick Reiff

     

    Vincente Garcia Vincente Garcia

     

    Amazing stuff right? Check out groups 1 & 2 for some additional eye candy!

    Don't forget... we will be featuring some of our customers' work, the products and techniques they used, and maybe even step-by-step instructions in future posts, so keep an eye out for them!

    Do you want to submit your work, or possibly write an article for our blog? Shoot us an email at bcscommunity@bigceramicstore.com.

  • Bottles are a fairly basic form, but present some unique challenges, so don’t move on to bottles until you feel confident in centering and throwing cylinders. The first steps to throwing a bottle are the same as throwing a cup or any other cylinder, but you should take some time to plan ahead. When you throw a cylinder to turn into a bottle, it should be a minimum of two (and three would be better) times taller than it is wide, and it will be shorter than you expect when completed, so use more clay than you think you will need and trim the top if you need to.

    • 23 Pottery Tips from A Year of Reading Pottery Blogs - Pottery Making Info | http://www.potterymakinginfo.com/news/23-pottery-tips-reading-pottery-blogs/

      […] How To Throw Advanced Shapes – Bottles […]

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