Trying out some carving

February 18, 2023

I have a friend who wanted to do a commissioned piece for his sister. The parameters were completely wide open. She came back and said she wanted a large platter with sunflowers and lemons that has a blue background. First thing I had to get my head around was combining lemons and sunflowers on the same plate. I did some sketches to figure out what the design would look like.

The next I had to think through is how I would have a blue background with the sunflowers and lemons. In normal life when you mix blue and yellow you get green. In pottery you could get any color, but it's also very likely that you'll get running.

I needed a way for there to be a bit of a barrier between the two colors. I came up with two primary options. The first was that I could use designer liner around the lemons and the sunflowers as a sort of barrier between the glazes. The second was to put the blue down as an underglaze and carve the sunflowers and lemons out.

Rather than start with a giant platter and cross my fingers, I decided to start with smaller items to give it a go. Trying out some carving

I can pick the definition of the leaves of the sunflower back up when I glaze. I decided to carve the different areas with different textures so that it's clear what is petal and what is center.

Trying out some carving

Once I got the sunflowers down I decided to try lemons and add in some leaves as well. I'm not as happy with the sunflower leaves as I am with the lemon leaves. I think I can pull that back in when I add the glaze though.

Trying out some carving

This last one I was just having fun and decided to try some conflowers. This was already an experiement with a block of wood I found at the craft store. It dried too fast so instead of a shallow plate it has become a cheese board. I need to find a way that I can carve while sitting, or at least not hunch as much, but the actual act of carving was really soothing.

You Might Also Like


Popular Posts

About me

Contact Form


Email *

Message *



Weekly updates on blog posts, where to find me at fairs, and other pertinent info. I will not sell your information.