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Hi Everyone,

I'm so inspired by the posts in this forum. I've never worked with ceramic, but have been considering it recently.  I've found this picture below. I would like to make a similar item using a piece of crochet or a doily. I suppose I would need to work with high firing porcelain clay and need a high firing temperature furnace.  I can't wait to experiment

I have two questions - Is there a book or an online course that can teach me the basics for working with porcelain clay, materials tools and process?  What temperature furnace I need to purchase?  image.png.0e2d3712d1aed5fc1991a02dccdf461e.png 

Edited by Orna
Grammer

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Very nice work there. While there are many books available my feeling is a course or two at your local pottery studio might be far more revealing. Pottery is difficult and yet very simplistic in that it has been practiced for centuries. The art, science and endless creativity is what draws many and their first experience throwing, building, glazing and firing often leads them to continue for a lifetime.

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welcome to the forums!  there are several books that cover working with clay.   some of the best for total beginners are textbooks from the 1970s.    if you enter "books" at the top right on the home page here, you might get to a discussion of what books each of us consider important.    there are a lot of recent books whick cover only a particular technique.   don't believe any title that includes words like "complete".   no single book can cover the entire field.

the good ones will have a glossary in the back and any instructor you may have will appreciate your knowledge of the terminology.  the photo showing a piece of lace wrapped around a balloon  will remain your inspiration.   it is good to have a goal when you start working.

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Hi Bill, 

Thanks for your reply. Agree this would be a good start.  I'm still searching for a suitable porcelain workshop in Israel. So far I've only found pottery wheel classes and nothing with porcelain.  The truth is I'm not attracted to the wheel.  For now, I'm mainly interested in working by free hand making small porcelain ornaments and beads for jewellery. I found only one artist working with porcelain clay, and she is not teaching.  I thought a  book or an online course focusing uniquely on porcelain, would speed up my learning.  Is the process of working with porcelain clay very similar to other clays, or I'll be waisting my time? 

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Thank you Oldlady. I've just typed books and porcelain. I hope to find info to get me started.  Yes, this picture is a supper inspiring goal to work towards. :)

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2 hours ago, Orna said:

Hi Bill, 

Thanks for your reply. Agree this would be a good start.  I'm still searching for a suitable porcelain workshop in Israel. So far I've only found pottery wheel classes and nothing with porcelain.  The truth is I'm not attracted to the wheel.  For now, I'm mainly interested in working by free hand making small porcelain ornaments and beads for jewellery. I found only one artist working with porcelain clay, and she is not teaching.  I thought a  book or an online course focusing uniquely on porcelain, would speed up my learning.  Is the process of working with porcelain clay very similar to other clays, or I'll be waisting my time? 

Good question and no matter your preference most pottery classes should include hand building and maybe sculpture classes as well which seem to align more with your present desire.

As to porcelain, it is clay and considered a little more difficult to use than other types of clay but it is clay nonetheless. I prefer to throw porcelain on the wheel, but my wife just finished hand building several Ikabana vessels. In the beginning I would not focus so directly on porcelain, instead I would find out if I enjoyed clay in general. In the end you may prefer Whitestone, Bmix, red clay, earthenware clays and yes porcelain based upon the item you are building. They are all clay and the basic pottery construction techniques apply.

All books are great, but trying your hand might inspire you to continue and even seek more information about the specific thing / clay / technique you enjoy most. Potters are extremely diverse and creative for this reason, there is a lifetime of experience and learning to be had if one is interested.

 

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Definitely take a class! You shouldn't invest in your own kiln until you know if you really even enjoy it. Plus you need to know what you're doing when it comes to firing. Even if you're not working in porcelain, you'll learn the basic clay handling techniques that are necessary for any type of clay. It's worth asking the local studios if they'll teach hand building. It may be that they only advertise the wheel throwing classes, but are willing to do both.

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I want to let you know that I enrolled to local ceramic classes, starting in July.  It includes wheel work and lectures about materials and process.  I also booked private lessons with a porcelain artist focusing on working with porcelain. Feeling so hopeful... so much to look forward to. Thank you all for your precious advise.

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I think they probably advertise wheel work as that is what most people visualise when they think of making pots.  There are probably as many potters handbuilding as wheel-throwing.

Enjoy

 

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