A few months back, I wrote about my design ideas for a porcelain vase. It's out of the kiln now and finally finished. I like it. It's final form is pleasing and technically good. But I wonder if I played it too safe.
Trying a new technique.
This vase was thrown in two pieces on the wheel. I've never done that before, so that was a risk. Would the two pieces fit together? Would it be a cohesive design coming together as one piece. And how would under glazing affect the overall look of the piece?
I used my digital drawing app, SketchClub, to try out my ideas first before applying any colored under glazes to the greenware piece. I wrote a blog a few months back. Here are three digital drawings I felt were the best choices. They all had drawbacks as I stated in my blog and although I'm not fond of waxing or wiping or repeated under glaze firings, I do what I feel a piece needs.
Ultimately, I chose a different approach. I decided on simplifying the color palette to black and red, eliminating the purple idea. I feel working in porcelain that my clay is a big part of my art, not just for the delicious, silky feel of the clay in my hands but also for its soft, milky white color. So, just as a watercolor painter uses the white paper as a color, I use my white porcelain clay as an integral part of the pieces I make. With that in mind, here's a picture of the finished vase.
You'll see that I put the colors in to accent the sculptural and design elements in and around the clay by using red on the heart-shaped leaves. And I keep your eye moving up, down and around the piece with the red and black dots. There are more dots on the inside too, adding a the whimsical feel. I also feel that coating the porcelain in clear glaze makes two separate thrown pieces unite as a whole and highlights the beautiful creaminess of the clay.
I don't usually draw digital designs before I under glaze a new piece. I'm getting better at knowing how it will look in the end but this time, I'm really glad I did.