Sunday, 10 August 2008

Cut it Out!

Though the weather has decided to turn rather dull and wet I am not saying it shouldn't rain, believe it or not the ground needs it (even if the dogs don't really like it). No when I say "cut it out", I'm referring to my cut handled bowls which I do along with two larger sizes and my cut handled platters that you can see in my older blog on the last firing.
I know it looks a little strange and it takes a bit of time to get used to throwing on a square bat but apart from the fact that they are just halved man made roof slates which makes them considerably less expensive than pottery wooden bats they make lining up the handles of these pots much easier. (One draw back is you have to learn not to hit the edges with your wrist when getting more water!)

You can make up a pad of clay by throwing it flat, then scraping the surface water off with a wooden tool then make a spiral in it to stop too much suction.

I use a pointer to give me the height and diameter of the pots once I have the size of the first one.

If you put a nail in it you can stop any touching accidents. (The other end is just held in a lump of clay at the edge of the wheel box.)

This is the cut handled bowl shape before cutting. This can be done when the pot is just softer than leather hard.

I use things that come to hand for marking out, a credit card works for the size of the handles.

And an old bottle top for a nice round shape.

If you know someone with an inhaler you could ask for their old one.

That's the shapes impressed, just cutting and finishing to do.

Cutting out is best done boldly rather than being timid.

Confident and clear with the knife (best not to have too sharper knife).

Cutting the hand holds.
Rounding off the edges to make it look like a thrown rim here too.

Sponging off to make it cleaner looking.

You do have to be able to reclaim your clay easily (we have a dough mixer and pug mill and blend our own clay).

I don't mind there being a bit of variation in these as we don't often sell sets of six of cut handled bowls. (They cost £25 each).

And this is the finished product.

Great for a Chinese take away.

Went to a wee Ceilidh (Scottish music and Dance) just along the road in Benderloch on Saturday, the Band and the dancing was great. (Wasn't too sure about some of the have a go your self bit though, maybe I hadn't had enough to drink?)


Ron said...

Great pot! Thanks for showing all that. Folks(including me) are getting a lot of info. from you blog Alan. Thanks for sharing it.

Deb said...

Thanks for putting that up Alan. You make it look effortless and I'm going to give it a try, although I am not sure it will be so effortless for me at first. Thanks again.

Alan from Argyll Pottery said...

Thanks guys, I think it's easier if like us your clay is quite fine (not much grog or sand in it) but I was looking at the old whisky drinking bowls made of silver called a Quaich that we have around here when I made the first cut handled platter and these bowls are a sort of progression from that with old fashioned wooden rowlocks and an old helmet upside down mixed in there somewhere. (Shows you how peculiar my brain is!)

Hannah said...

lovely bowl Alan. Was talking about you to a very admiring lady this weekend, were your ears burning?

Alan from Argyll Pottery said...

So that's why my ears are always red, it's all those ladies talking about me, (some how I don't think so).

Hannah said...

she was very complimentary about you

Alan from Argyll Pottery said...

Well Hannah I've known I seem to have that affect on seventy year old ladies for some time.

Hannah said...

She wasn't that old, maybe mid 40's I think.I'll not write on here who she was just in case she reads it, might embarrass her.