Sunday, January 31, 2010

Double Container

At times Estelle and I had fun using a home made extruder. From extruded tubes we made square and tall triangular containers like this as well as tall sinuous "snake" containers and other things. This photo and the arrangement are not ours but was arranged and photographed at Margaret Brokenshire's gallery at Sumner, Christchurch, some years ago.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Small Serving Dish

This small serving dish was made for, and fired in, our first anagama firing. It is not dated or signed but was made by Estelle and our first firing was the only one where we obtained these wonderful dark colours. There are three of them, all different free form-shapes but all with the same dark colours.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Raindrops on Guaria

It does not rain very often here during summer so when it does these images are always tempting. I'm not sure whether I have spelt Guaria correctly but it has pretty white flowers with a pink centre in very long fronds. We have had quite a lot of rain this month and the grass is green rather than the usual brown for this time of year.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Another Background Piece

This is another type of background I thought you may like to see. It has been arranged with hydrangea here but also looked great with a single Magnolia Grandaflora flower.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Early Autumn Colour

This blossom tree often has a few colourful leaves even though it is mid summer. I could not resist taking a picture of them.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Large Tsubo Showing an Effect Similar to Salting

Over the years I have been asked many times whether we used salt or soda to produce the effects shown on our pots. The fine wood ash acts much the same as a vapour firing (e.g. salt) and produced the effects shown here. We never used glaze or added anything but ash to produce the colour or effects we achieved.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Bucket Shaped Vase

This is one of several versions we made of the old Japanese "Oke" which were wooden buckets for drawing water from a well. They are fun to use for ikebana floral arrangements. They were not easy to fire in the anagama as the handle would be inclined to move sideways, as this one has, but that can add to the challenge when it is used.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Background for Flower Arrangement

This background piece has been made from a slab of clay which has been beaten with the edge of a piece of wood to make the texture. There is a small separate pot placed behind that the background leans against and holds the water for the flower arrangement. We made variations with shapes and textures all of which were very easy to arrange.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Another of Estelle's Bowls

This is one of Estelle's glazed bowls from earlier times. The glaze is papa rock with a partial dip of willow ash glaze. Before the glaze dried a sprinkling of black iron sand was put on and then iron oxide has been painted over the area of overlap. Estelle made whole dinner sets using this technique of glazing.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Anagama Fired Bowl

This is one of Estelle's anagama fired bowls which I use frequently. It is best used with hashi (chop-sticks) as, like all anagama pieces it is a little rough to use with silver cutlery. The natural ash has run and pooled slightly which gives a wonderful pattern.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Iris by the Pond

These iris have now finished but they looked very lovely when they were flowering. Our Summer has been very hot and the garden soon started to look tired after looking really wonderful in the Spring.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Trinket Box

After showing you the little "A" shaped bottle I thought you might like to see another early piece of mine. This trinket box was made with 22 small pieces of clay and was really a labour of love. The white glaze has crazed a little and become discoloured where it has been handled. It is still in use after many years.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Estelle's Cylinder from First Firing

These two images are of a cylinder Estelle made and fired in our first anagama firing. The colours are unique and we never ever came close to these colours in any subsequent firing. Later we learned that the throwing ridges should have been softened by running a wet chamois over the surface before the pot was removed from the wheel but a photo of this pot was much admired by our Japanese friends when we were in Japan in 1982.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

An A Shaped Bottle

This is one of my early glazed works. It was done as a model for a larger version but I decided it would not enlarge very well. It was quite a challenge to make - it is only 10 cm. high - joining up the eight small pieces of clay and being sure that the finished piece would contain water when used as a vase.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Kinuta "Moonlit Foam"

This mallet shaped vase has most wonderful colours and could be used with almost any flower or plant material. It was not often that we achieved such special results from our anagama and this is why I have kept this piece in the collection.

Friday, January 1, 2010

View from my Dining Room Window

When I put aeroplane pictures on my blog site you may wonder how far I have to go to take them. This shot is through the tall window of my dining room so you can see just how close the neighbours aeroplanes are. Any noise from them does not worry me and I am fascinated by the variety of planes that come and go.