You might have noticed that last week there was no blog post because I was away living it up in St Ives.
Cornwall is famous for scrumpy cider, pasties, fish and chips, long stretches of beautiful coastline and if your a potter its a mecca thanks to Bernard Leach. Who set up a pottery with Shoji Hamada in 1920, ever since its attracted other potters and artists to its golden shores.
I was there for four days to do some throwing and learn some new techniques. It was great to meet the Leach Pottery gang – Peter, Ella, Gordon, Kat and Midori.
It was really quite an inspiring trip for me that’s made me realise perhaps my throwing isn’t so bad! Probably the best thing I took away from the tuition was how to make plates.
I’ve always struggled to make plates in the past and after a while I became addicted to the process! Its quite a lot of fun and after some experience you start to learn the differences between good plates and not so good ones.
You might notice the clay is slightly different to the stoneware I normally use. Their clay is still stoneware, its just slightly grogged – which means it has larger particles of stone and sand in it and the colour is from an addition of iron.
I managed to bring some of my pieces home and I’m eager to get them bisqued and glazed to see how they come out!
My thoughts also go out to those affected by the earthquake in Japan, particularly the pottery village of Mashiko where Bernard Leach studied all those years ago.