Welcome to my news page which I keep up-to-date with any significant information about me and my work, such as exhibitions for example. You can find more detailed and regular updates on how I work on social media. You can access them through my website or go directly via my Instagram or Facebook accounts.
 
This news page started its life in autumn 2016 when I was required to write a blog during my MA degree course in Ceramics at the University of Central Lancashire in Preston, UK. Thus, going back you will find many blogs chronicling my artistic developments along with more personal observations made during those two years. 

Second Assignment: minimalist 1st marquette

Working on my first boat marquette based on a boat with a flat bottom. I am fairly focussed on having some sort of function for this piece. As it is ceramic, it lends itself as a piece of tableware or something to hold food. This piece didn't work for me for various reasons, the main being it was only one piece and not in two and there were angles which were totally unresolved. I decided to try another approach with another marquette. However, here is a blow-by-blow account of the development of this first boat marquette.

Second Assignment: minimalist vs. maximalist - part 1

Today we were set our second assignment named 'Stand and Deliver', which refers less highwaymen or 1980's hits but refers tp the concept of pairing an element of 'stand' with one of 'delivery' roughly associated with, for instance, a cup and saucer. We are to make to two versions of these pairings, one minimalist and one maximalist. This assignment is both challenging but has offers a many interpretations. I think this is a good one to get stuck into. I started off with developing my minimalist piece. Initially I had the idea of developing something along the lines of a pea pod. However, having worked on some ideas in my sketchbook I decided to work through my second idea, which involved boa

Day out visiting the Potteries in Stoke

It is obligatory for a ceramics course to schedule at least one visit to Stoke-on-Trent, the home and historical centre of pottery making in England. We had a fully packed day with three visit on the agenda: starting off with a look around the pottery displays in The Potteries Museum and Art Gallery, followed by visit to The Gladstone Pottery Museum and finishing off by a buying spree in the shop and a tour around the factory at Potclays. I fully enjoyed the day, especially the tour around the clay-making factory. It was a bit eery and atmospheric as all the employees had left for the day. As for the Potteries Museum there were so many pots to look at that one would benefit from visiting aga

First project: natural vs. man-made

Responding to my initial man-made piece I wanted my natural piece also to have wings and a trunk. I also thought to add some extra handbuilding techniques. So, this one was made including slabs, pinching and coiling. I approached this half of the project very similar the the first by firstly sourcing images of patterns and then making a selection of little trials in clay. From this I selected which would be the most appropriate to use for my piece. I coiled a body and made the trunk first. These I played around with to find the best and most pleasing arrangement. I had a hard time steering it away from an association with a shoe or a wooden clog. The building process for this natural piece w

Struggling with essays

I’m really struggling to come up with a theme for my literary review and, thus, my contextual review. There are so many interesting topics, which seem to disqualify themselves for various reasons: How do they tie in with what I’m practically pursuing in my MA? How can I narrow it down to a meaningful 750 words? Isn’t this an old hat that has been already covered umpteen times before? Am I really this interested in this topic? Will this not totally lead me off into a direction I don’t want to take? Well, obviously it should start with reading and informing myself and then some interest may emerge from my research. However, it may also just throw up an overwhelming number of possibilities and

First project: man-made vs. natural

To get us warmed up for this MA we are set a few introductory project. The first one, leading on from trying out making different textures in clay, is to use these to make two contrasting pieces: one referencing man-made qualities and the other natural. I started off working on my man-made piece before moving on the natural one. I wanted to make some sort of creature for both. Based on some of the patterns I had made previously on test tiles and new ones I tried out on a slab I made a selection of patterned elements from which I assembled my final piece. Here are the final elements to choose from. Even though I like the patterns on all I had to make a selection. I chose to keep the round sp

Fab MA Ceramics Degree show

The UCLan MA degree show this year is one of the best I've ever seen. Well done to all involved! Here is my full take on it: link: MA 2016 degree show

Research: human figure in clay

Having leafed through the book 500 Figures in Clay (Lark Books, New York, 2004) for figures that I like I’ve realised that I am not keen on the human form shaped into 3D in clay. The more realistic the figures were the less they appealed to me. Maybe their emotional impact is too immediate for my taste. However, I do like a painterly representation of the human shape or parts on very abstract shapes or pots that don’t imitate the human shape. But then, it may just be the choice, however wide it seems to be, that is presented within this book. This realisation seems even stranger to me as I have in the past quite often modelled the human form into clay – especially in form of masks. On refle

Tutor demo 3: simple mould making

Dave is giving us a quick demonstration of how to create some basic plaster moulds that could be used to create textures. This is a helpful way of transferring textures of found objects directly onto clay. My mould making experience is very limited but I am planning to use it for part of my main project. So, every demonstration in the plaster room will help me extend my knowledge and increase my confidence. However, observing is one way, making and learning-by-doing will be way forward. Here are my notes on this demo: link: plaster mould

Tutor demo 2: basic hand building

We are introduced to the two tutors who will be working with us on this MA. Both Wendy Lawrence and Anna Lambert have had years of experience working with clay albeit very differently. They have us us a short introduction into basic hand building techniques such as coiling, slab building, pinching and working from a solid block of clay. It doesn't matter how experienced a potter you are there are always new things to learn and tips to pick up when watching other potters work. This is my first play with the crank clay Wendy uses: link: basic hand building

Tutor demo 1: wedging & texture

David, our course leader started us off with a basic introduction into clay wedging. I did not realise that different wedging techniques affected the arrangements of the platelets within the clay body in different ways. Thus, stack-and slam wire wedging is more suitable for slab building and not suitable for throwing on the wheel. Here the clay platelets should be arranged in a spiral or circular way not in horizontal layers. That is a bit of a pity as stack-and-slamming is the most easy way for me to wedge. The rams-head technique is a real strain on my wrists and I have not mastered spiral wedging. We went on to making some slab tiles, which we decorated with different textures. Here are m

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