Another term gone…bring on the Christmas term!

Hello all you wee mud monkeys!

Well that’s another term of pottery madness finished!  Everybody put a supreme amount of work and talent into the exhibition and also discovered how to make or refine new pottery ideas during the term…well done!

As the title of this post suggests next term is the term for making Christmas goodies!  It provides makers the opportunity to gift special items as a thanks for others love and care during the year.  If you want to do this by making individualized special ceramic items that  then it is a good time to think about collecting images and ideas, shapes and colours and assessing the skills that you have to enable  you to achieve your goals.

The basic ways of making that you will have tried are…

Slab rolling – great for making cylinders…t-lights, jugs, mugs, serviette rings, straight sided containers, nesting bowls, plant hangers, shot glasses, tumblers, vases, ramekins.

Pinch pots – great for making round shapes…bowls, t-cups, tapas dishes, nesting bowls, pebble shapes, birds, animals, spoons.

Throwing – great for making…bowls, cups, mugs, vases (anything roundish really!), also you could make a mould for doing pinch pots in.

Sometimes picking one way of making and one theme…like vases or t-lights can be enough to start producing lots of variations that you can quickly and competently make.  Remember that there are only 8 weeks in the term so you really want to have most of your making out of the way by week 5…then have lots of time to get things, bisqued and glazed through the term.  Because of the quantity of work that is produced over the Christmas term the kilns are usually working flat out…and often not everything will fit into the weekly schedule so allow plenty of time for being stuck in the firing queue.   Also…big things take longer to get through the kiln as there are only so many I can fit in at once…this includes dinner sized plates and tall vases!

Please have a great holiday break and come back to class with a workbook bursting with ideas…really I do love seeing your workbooks!


Tatyanna a.k.a The Busy Finch

I leave you with some inspiration for next term!


Our Awesome Exhibition 2014!

Well done everybody!

The show was amazing!  From the installation helpers to the show supervisors and pack down peoples…many, many thanks…you all made this show a success!  Also the fabulous pieces of work that were on loan to show the diversity of what we make at Risingholme…thank you one and all!

We had great feed back from the visitors and also had a fantastic number of pots that found new homes.  The were plenty of pots that were on loan that would have found new homes too!

Next week is our last week for the term…it has been a busy one…but very rewarding.  If you want to come back to term 4…The Christmas Term…please make sure that you enroll straight away to secure your spot.  If you are not coming back but still have pots in the process of firing you will be able to come and pick them up next term during your same class time.

So even though it is last week next week, after you get any glazing out of the way, take advantage of this time to make some quick technique repetition pots to start making for Christmas pressies.  They will dry over the holidays and then can go straight into the kiln next term.  Candle holders, mugs, small vessels, and Christmas decorations are all quick little things that can be made easily and with attention to detail can look smashing!  Think about texture and colour and bring along items to individualize your pots.

I always have the 4 basic making technique sheets in file boxes by the scales that are there for you to use as a simple ‘know how’ and also inspiration for ideas for the type of objects that can be made.  So have a look!  Also the libraries have great books available to peruse and take home for inspiration at this time of the year.  Next term I will talk more about making simple gift ideas.

It has been a very busy couple of weeks so I will keep this post short and leave you with some inspirational eye candy photographed at the exhibition by the lovely Lucy Arnold…thank you Lucy!

have a great weekend and stay safe



a.k.a They Busy Finch