I have found a new sense of beauty in a simple form and a simple glaze thanks to Wabi Sabi and the Japanese style tea bowl (Chawan). What the heck is Wabi Sabi, you might ask? Actually, it is proably best explained by Leonard Koren--"Wabi Sabi is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is a beauty of things modest and humble. It is a beauty of things unconventional....The closest English word to Wabi Sabi is probably rustic...Things Wabi Sabi are unstudied and inevitable looking....unpretentious...Their craftmanship may be impossible to discern." (from "Wabi Sabi for Artists, Designers, Poets, and Philosophers") So what am I rambling on about and whats this got to do with my teapot boats? I don't know yet. I'm just letting people know that I'm making a heck of a lot of tea bowls and have been bitten by the Shino bug (the type of glaze I am experimenting with). Oh, I'm still working on the boats. I think the next boat posted will be "P-Tea-109.
This teapot is actually still a work in progress. I am extremely happy with the boat itself but have decided to experiment with the glaze treatment. The Tug was painted with teal blue and white underglazes and fired to cone 05. After the boat was fired I used yellow nylon fiber twine to attach the tires and wrap the posts. Although many people have made favorable comments about the teapot, I feel that the boat seems too "toy-like," and therefor needs a slight make-over to change the appearance. The make-over, or experiment, will be to apply a copper carbonate solution, with a sponge, to the hull of the boat. Then I will re-fire the piece inside a sager (a little enclosed box made of fire bricks) with some pine cones around the base of the boat. If all goes well the copper carbonate solution will make the hull look rusty and weathered. The areas where the pine cones touch the boat I hope will pit the surface of the underglaze and the smoke from the burning pine cones should further enhance the old weather beaten look of the hull. As I said, Tug-N-Tea is still a work in progress. If my experiment is a failure I can always just repaint the boat with Teal and White underglazes.
My first steps as a Blogger. I have know idea what I'm doing. Lordy, Lordy.
I actually added the picture to my blog after my first steps. But, What the heck. I'm still learning. The name of the boat teapot is called "No-Time-4-Tea." I have started a series of boat teapots, hand constructed, made from terracotta, and painted with commercial underglazes and glazes. My objective with this Blog, CleanMud, is to post thoughts and photos of my work hoping to get feed back from friends and visitors to my site. Good or bad, I will welcome the criticism and your thoughts. I will post new pieces of my pottery as frequently as I can so visit often. Sincerely, Jeffrey R.
Took my first clay classes at Bemidji State University in 1989. In 2002, after a long break, I started more pottery classes at Viterbo University in La Crosse, WI.
I do not have one area of interest, but that isn't to say I am unfocused. I enjoy making everything from coffee mugs to trompe l' oeil. I work with highfire stoneware, and low fire earthenware. I'm just clay crazy.