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About 1515art

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 02/23/1953

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Santa Clara, California
  • Interests
    I began my journey in clay in 1970 and have never regretted getting my clothes dirty ever, in addition to ceramic art i enjoy prospecting in the mountains, collecting jade and fishing on my boat.

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  1. 1515art

    New Potter

    Take classes, you will learn something new from every teacher you have, this book was one I found helpful many years ago when I was learning to throw, “Pottery on the Wheel” by Elisabeth S. woody I did see the book for under $5 on line and internet videos were something not available when I was a young potter. I made a throwing video back in the 1970’s it was a grant funded project I was asked to do with one of the professors, probably good for everyone I don’t think it ever made the transition to digital. good luck
  2. 1515art

    Irregular shape pot

    Hard to say exactly how, he probably uses a combination of techniques depending on the piece. If it were me and I was making only one or two carving would work (taking away), if I were making more than a couple, or if they were large l would use clay slabs in a form assembled on/in a form and do alterations. Friend of mine when I was working out of a studio in Berkley, Ca. Was building giant planters for commercial buildings these were angular pieces 3’x4’x3’ he would pull them from the wood supports and beat them with metal chains and other stuff to give them texture. I might also try using a multi part plaster press/cast mold and then hand alterations if I wanted to do large production.
  3. 1515art


    Basically it means “one fish” yi taio yu and haven’t measured but I’m guessing somewhere around 16” ?
  4. 1515art

    new work at 1515art

    a few new pieces i'm working on inspired by my friends in China. These are green and bisque ware and i'm still thinking about the glaze combinations I plan to use. these will all fire to cone 10 reduction.
  5. It depends on how much clay I am throwing, I might just use a finger tip if only a small amount of clay is involved and on very large forms I might push down with the palm of my left hand really forcing the clay to open up. I think the one thing that remains constant and is the key point is I always open just slightly off center usually to the right and if I remain steady the hole will open just slightly larger than my finger(s) and I find it easy to stay centered with the pressure of the spinning clay at a steady pace from only one direction. The problem with opening by pushing directly down in the exact center is the spinning clay tends to push your fingers unpredictably and you can get a bit of a wobble as the pressure on your finger changes with the spinning clay. Next I’ll squeeze the clay between the fingers and thumb of my left hand while pushing down on the to of the donut with my fight hand and slowly pull towards me feeling the clay and giving it time to respond. I maintain bottom thickness with my left index finger as I open and stop pulling when I have the desired inside diameter established. Squeezing the clay at the bottom of the donut after opening will help move some of the clay up and help start your first pull.
  6. 1515art


    “Ye Tiao Xiao Yu”
  7. Times were very different when I was in college back in the 1970’s the whole getting sued thing wasn’t so out of control. I lived very near my local community college and the ceramics professor gave me a key to the studio so I could help fire the kilns, two big old alpines.
  8. 1515art


    I made a press mold that gets me the body and some texture to speed up fabrication they are also made hollow the fins and other detail I add, size is around 3”s long.
  9. 1515art


    Thanks Babs, I’m making some different thrown pieces and these each will be a fish lid finial and on the body of the pot I’ll write/stamp as part of the decoration “yi tiao yu” Chinese for “one small fish”
  10. 1515art

    Hand-building advice

    Gabby, depends on what I’m making and just how I’m planning on finishing, trimming and those things. For larger pieces when I’m working wet so I can touch, shape and handle without the shape getting damaged I’ll use a heat gun to firm up the clay in critical places and leave things softer at the joints/join areas and where I’m planning other shaping or more throwing, using a soft touch is also important. When working with wetter clay I can work the seam making everything one piece. Same thing throwing a tall cylinder sometimes I do it in two sections throwing the bottom section normally, the top section is the same diameter thrown bottomless. Then just a tiny bit of firming with the heat gun before quickly inverting the second cylinder and securing It onto the top of the first cylinder when the pieces are joined air trapped inside helps support it structurally until the top batt is wired off from what is now the top of the tall cylinder. If the clay is still to wet to support its own weight use the heat gun to firm it up before wiring off the batt. An additional advantage inverting the top section is any clay thickness in what is now the top of the cylinder can be thrown more if everything is still on center. I know one artist that makes very large round forms joining slabs of clay around different size beach balls, deflating the ball and removing it when the clay was firm enough to support its own weight. Sometimes leather hard is best for structural reasons and then greater care is required reinforcing joints, fitting parts and controlling the drying in order to avoid the clay warping and seams opening/cracking and pieces falling off. If pieces do fall off that’s ok too, joining bone dry pieces is often the trick. In China at the factories I’ve watched the make many different forms in large sections and join the sections dry with a clay mortar and trim for final shape after assembly. The challenge working with the clay dry is obviously it needs to be correct size and shape as dry clay bends poorly. The advantage joining pieces when everything is dry are no stresses due to uneven moisture content in the clay, usually I mix up some thick slip from the same clay and a bit of paper fiber in a blender to the consistency I need to glue things together. The dry pieces cement quickly and the thick slip can be sculpted a little to fill gaps and transitions.
  11. 1515art


    Hi Shawnhar, yes one piece. I do the flair collaring the clay with the fingers of my left hand and little finger and thumb from my right hand while using my right index and right middle finger to throw the rim flair all at the same time. It’s a little tricky until you get the feel, but the technique works really well making closed forms.
  12. Have a great show mark sounds like a lot of fun with life long friends and your friend should love the trophy, beautiful glaze. clark
  13. Tom thanks again, but before I get too excited trying to cram my big feet into dorthy's ruby slippers I've got to make sure Toto doesn't crap on the carpet, lol. The fish on the table is 24" tall almost and another 24 at the widest point and as the size increases so do the challenges and dissapointments figuring out the engineering and such and Avoiding undesirable unattractive glaze faults will be the challenge, I'll feel better when all that's worked out. i don't know if you remember the flower oil paintings I posted back a bit, my friend is also buying some extra large paintings of hers. The flower painter also paints ceramics in China, but I don't know much about the studio other than it was provided some how by the governor because he really liked her work, she has been wanting to team up with my ceramics and her ceramic painting so we will do something togeather if and when I can work out the logistics. Guess I'd better clean up the studio, thanks again, Clark
  14. Made my delivery this morning beautiful home up near Villa Montolvo in the Saratoga foothills, home was constructed over a hundred years ago and my client tells me as we tour the home she needs more work pointing to spots in each room where she wants multiple large sculptures. This is going to be a lot of work, starting with a fish sculpture several times larger than the one I just delivered...
  15. Tom, good advise always and yes I’m thankful to have this problem. You are right and I could never sell the little yellow metal chunks I find for two reasons, 1 the emotional attachment and 2 they actually cost me 10 times their real value just to find them,lol.

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