My pottery creations on and off the wheel.

Leave a comment

Jenny Taris Workshop

Another awesome workshop weekend at the pottery club in Paeroa.

This one we focussed on the female form, which i have to say i love doing and want to do some more because i haven’t done many,  there is a certain art to getting the clay to stay where you put it though. I learned a whole different way of coming at the sculpturing of it than what i have tried before too, granted these ones are not the best (still love them though:-) but am feeling inspired for the next one i try.

We had lots of laughs about the way gravity has the same effect on us girls as it did on the clay, we needed to prop a few things up with varied success 🙂

It was really cool though to see a room full of so many different female forms and all of them were beautiful in their own ways.


Leave a comment

I’m in love again!


I brought home the completed pottery beagle and grumpy pig from the pottery club today. I am in love with them, Baxter took a bit longer.

I couldn’t resist getting the camera out for the introductions to his new pack 🙂




Leave a comment

Soda firing in the woodkiln results…

At last the final stage of my latest creations, they have been on quite a journey and the ladies are still standing 🙂 I really like the depth of the glaze, the variation in tones, the result on texture and the accumulation of soda on the faces.

What do you think, feel free to leave me comment?


Hope, Joy, Aspire ladies.


Swirly candelabra.


Chamber candlesticks.


Cheeky Kiwi and chamber candlesticks.


Small faces with fittings to hang.


Small faces line up.





1 Comment

Working on today..

Today I am working on some smaller garden face masks, I love the big ones but they are a bit heavy to work on.  These new ones are only 5 inches from forehead to chin, so I can sit down in the shade to make them.

The proportions are all different so i’m forward to seeing what their little expressions turn out to be 🙂


Noses in first.



3/5 photographed at a funny angle, and flash doesn’t help, they look better in person.



Just one for today.




Monday: the last one done now and in daylight this time 🙂






Leave a comment

Working on 2 new sculptures

Well, actually I have been working on 4 sculptures.  Two of them ended up as casualties 🙂

By the time I had made and recycled the second one, I had worked out how to keep them balanced and weighted at the bottom to make them support themselves.  All part of the process of getting it from the brain, to the paper, to the clay.

Hoping to have them ready for the pop up gallery in Paeroa but don’t want to force the drying time on these so not too sure.

Just have the hearts growing in the pinch pots to go on them now, I am thinking “nurture” and “grow” do they need a name though?

Leave a comment

Club raku in 5 fun steps!


Step one: the lid comes off and the 900+ degree pottery is lifted into combustible material. First time wielding the tongs for me, panic stations 🙂


Another potter’s creation next, a very trusting potter too, no shakes or dropsies so was all good 🙂


Step two: into the sawdust and paper, another layer is quickly put on top and the lid goes on.


Step three: it’s out of the can and cooled.

raku cooling

Step four: cooled in a wet paper bath then into a water bath for a good scrub.


Step five: the first scrub reveals the colour and crackling by removing some of the soot on the surface, these ones are off home for another scrub.

Leave a comment

Clay faces for club raku firing.

Went with an Easter Island head for the concrete sculpture because I wasn’t that confident with faces. That inspired a series of faces, for the practice as much as anything and it gave me the chance to play around with different placement for eyes and noses and mouths. I started with plans of five faces but ran out of the Raku clay, so three it is, feels like a good number 🙂





Polystyrene, chicken wire and concrete sculpture

I just couldn’t wait for the workshop coming up in a couple of weeks to give this a try!

So here is my test run of the process, well my process at least, am still looking forward to the workshop where we will learn how to do it properly and about coating the finished piece using oxides I think. I will need to make another sculpture for that one.

For this one I am already imagining where it will live in the garden and which plants to surround it in. Before I started this one I made a small marquette so that I could experiment with how to position both halves of the sculpture, just because I thought it might be a bit dull as a single piece figure, this was fun in itself and got my imagination going. There are a few positions I really liked and assuming the pieces aren’t too heavy to lift it may end up being a bit of an evolving sculpture depending on my mood!


Made a clay sculpture, cut it in half and played around with it and some paper drawings. This one I really like but plan to do it in clay so I can get better detail.



I started with a big pile of polystyrene from packaging and tiny clay sculpture for reference.


Carving with a craft knife, taping and sticking with toothpicks done and it is starting to take form.


Here you can see the difference between the rough coat of cement and how it looks after smoothing.



Roughly cover the shape with chicken wire, secure the ends together using the cut edges, fold where you can to tighten onto form.


Wire cutters a must for the chicken wire, I cut mine into easy to handle sections rather than trying to cover too much in one piece.


Needle nose pliers very handy for tightening the wire onto your form. A time consuming part of the process, Baxter slept right through this step!


I mixed the bag of concrete by hand in small batches to contain the mess and get the right consistency to hold onto the mesh, kitchen gloves and a damp dust mask a must.


The concrete mix I bought had a lot of sand and no chunky bits so made it nice to work with and didn’t go off too fast but was more difficult to get it to adhere to the vertical.


After it starts to firm up a little you can smooth it out with a spatula or palette knife.


Waiting impatiently for it to dry now! Had to insert a large bent nail from calf to thigh and rework the back of the knee, hopefully this extra support will prevent another crack forming as it dries.