Hot Ceramics & Pottery How-Tos

How To: Make a simple clay and ash glaze

This method of making glaze utilizes environmental supplies. That way there's no need to rely on a clay supply store, so it's great to save money or time if it's a distance to the nearest supplier. Watch this video pottery tutorial and learn how to make a simple ceramic glaze for firing out of clay remnants and wood ash. It's appropriate for use on raw glazing projects as well.

How To: Make an incense burner out of clay

Ilysa and Kira with Polymer Clay TV demonstrate how to make an incense burner out of clay. An incense burner is a great way to use up a lot of your scrap clay. You can also use molds, embellishments and pigments to create your incense burner. You can roll up your clay in a swirl to create the incense burner or use any other desired shape. You can also do pinch pot type shapes. To make an incense burner, you'll need a ball of scrap clay, a blade, and a rod. Use the rod to flatten pieces of a c...

How To: Throw a wide bowl with Simon Leach

Watch this instructional ceramics video to learn how to throw a wide bowl with Simon Leach. As a preliminary step, one should throw a flat piece of clay onto the pad to assure easy lifting off of the bat. Centering is quite difficult with a larger piece of clay. Leach's visual guide allows one to view the delicate steps required to throw a wide ceramic bowl without letting it collapse.

How To: Join two pieces of soft clay

Check out this video to learn a technique for attaching soft clay to soft clay. No scoring or slip is needed. By just applying firm pressure to get a good strong joint. The small clay coil is used to reinforce the joints, and the blending is to make sure both parts are joint securely. Finally give a little pull to the new piece of clay that was attached, to test how good the joints are. If it comes loose than you are not applying enough pressure in joining the two pieces together. Finally, if...

How To: Make a miniature ceramics mold using resin

This video demonstrates how to make a miniature ceramics mold using resin. The object being made is a small saucepan for a doll house. A product called "AMAZING Mold Putty" is used. It is non toxic and can even be used for food. It comes in two tubes. One is yellow and one is white. Take a blob from each tube and make sure they are of equal size. Blend the two blobs together. You must work fast because the material becomes completely hard in 30 minutes. You probably have only three or four mi...

How To: Make a clay plate set

Clay pottery is a fun and creative art form that can be done with slabs of clay and not only on a spinning wheel. This free video clip series will show you several tips on how to construct matching clay plates and open a world of design ideas for you.

How To: Use a potato peeler as a fluting tool

In this video, we learn how to use a potato peeler as a fluting tool. First, take your wet pot and then grab the potato peeler. Use broad strokes along the side of the pot and press down hard and you peel the clay off of the sides. You will need to go over the same spot a few times to be able to see, but once you go around the entire pot you will see the different shapes in the marks. Once you are finished going all the way around the pot, your hands will be tired but it will be fluted with t...

How To: Make simple pot stands

In this tutorial, we learn how to make simple pot stands. Start with your clay on the table and use water and your hands to start to shape it. Press down on the ball until it forms into a low bowl shape. Then, start to add more clay and water to the sides of the pot so that it's thicker on the edges. After this, place the pot stand onto a ceramic drying area, then you will be able to glaze it and fire it. Clean off your spinning table after you are finished, then enjoy your pot and pot stand!

How To: Throw a large vessel

Watch this ceramics tutorial video to learn how to throw a large vessel on your pottery wheel. The detailed instructions in this helpful how-to video are best for intermediate potters who have some experience but have never made larger vessels.

How To: Use wood ash to prep pots for the kiln

In this video, we learn how to use wood ash to prep pots for the kiln. First, grab wood ash and place it into a container that sprays. After this, blow in the appropriate hole and hold the container so the ash gets all over your pots. Continue to do this all the way around the pots. You will get out of breath while doing this, so take your take and take breaks to breathe. Make sure you do this in a quick amount of time so the ash inside the container stays ready to be blown. After this, the p...

How To: Make a ceramic slab plate

In this video, we learn how to make a ceramic slab plate. First, roll out the ceramic. After this, place the clay on butcher or newspaper and smooth it out with a plastic card. Repeat this on the other side. Next, use a paper template to help cut your design or use a circular object. Cut slits to help remove the surrounding clay. Use the excess clay to build support pieces then curve the edges of the plate up and place the support pieces underneath. Use a piece of leather to smooth the edges....

How To: Glaze pottery inside and outside

Watch this ceramics tutorial video to learn how to use some more advanced glazing techniques to make the inside different than the outside. The detailed instructions in this helpful how-to video are best for intermediate to advanced potters who want to glaze both the inside and the outside of their pottery.

How To: Mix your own clay at home

This video tutorial shows how to mix your own clay body. Covered are the basic types of clay, fluxes, and fillers. When testing clay body mixtures, make 1000 gram batches dry, then add water to that. This way a percentage recipe can be taken and just by moving the decimal point can convert it to grams (25% = 25 grams or 250 grams, etc). Here is a clay-body recipe is as follows for those of who might care. Also, much of the mixture of a clay body is designed to match the glazes. It needs to me...

How To: Decorate raw clay pottery with white slip

In this video pottery-making tutorial, Simon uses a white slip made from half china clay and half stoneware clay. Slip is an alternative to glaze for finishing a potted project. Simon also demonstrates an easy project to make a paint brush holder that will keep tools in place while using them. Watch this video demonstration to pick up a few ways to decorate a raw clay pottery piece with white slip.

How To: Decorate bisque pottery with red iron oxide

This is a video tutorial of decorating bisque with red iron oxide. Red iron oxide can be layered, fired, watered-down, and used in many ways to add a finish to a piece of bisque pottery. Bisqueware absorbs the color easily, so the two materials work well together. Pick up some new ideas for how to decorate bisque pottery with red iron oxide by watching this video ceramic design tutorial.

How To: Wedge two types of clay together

Wedging two types of clay can give you a new color, which you can then use to further decorate your pieces. Make sure that the two kind of clay require the same firing temperature. You can mix your own personal clay to work with simply by selecting qualities in standard clays and kneading them together.

How To: Fit a lamp base into pottery with Simon Leach

In this video by Simon Leach, we learn how to fit a lamp base into pottery with Simon Leach. First, you will take the lamp base that has all the wires inside of it. From here, you will wire the cables through the proper fittings for the light. Then, you need to put a hole in the bottom of the lamp base so you can string the light base through and then place the light bulb on top. When you are finished, the pottery can sit on top of the base and then you can add a light shade to finish up the ...

How To: Center on the potter's wheel with clay

Perfect your ability to center on a Potter's wheel with these tips from Andy Ruble. There are several different ways to go about centering, but the general principle is to put equal pressure on the top and side of the ball of clay and clay has no choice but to go in the middle. This instructional ceramics video is designed to help the beginning through advanced ceramic student improve their throwing skills.

How To: Make ceramic flower pots

In this video series, our expert potter will demonstrate how to make ceramic flower pots and vases. You will get easy to follow step-by-step instructions on how to wedge and prepare clay, and how to throw a variety of flower pots on the pottery wheel. You will also get tips and advice on flower pot designs and decorations. If you have some experience with pottery, this video will give you the tools and advice you will need to make a beautiful and decorative flower pot.

How To: Make double-walled pottery vessels

In this how-to ceramics video series, learn from artist Susan Ting how to make a double-walled teapot on a potter's wheel and how to carve intricate designs into the clay. This artist will teach you how to center the clay on the potter's wheel, how to pull the inner wall of the pot, how to pull the outer wall of the pot, how to connect the two walls create a teapot, how to form the teapot flange, how to throw off the hump, how to make a teapot lid, how to make a teapot spout, how to attach a ...

How To: Pierce carve a clay pottery bowl

Ingleton Pottery demonstrates how to pierce carve a clay pottery bowl. First, form your bowl on a potter's wheel. Then take a blade to the undried clay bowl and score your design into the bowl using the piercing technique. Gently press out the design so that the clay is removed from the negative space created by the scoring marks. Continue making the design around the bowl. You can make intricate designs around the bowl using the piercing and scoring technique. Be careful not to damage the bo...

How To: Collar ceramics

This instructional ceramics video is designed to help the beginning through advanced ceramic student improve their throwing skills. Learn hand/finger placement when pulling cylinders. Perfect your ability to collar ceramics well with these tips from Andy Ruble. Collar all sorts of tall, fun little items.

How To: Collar a cylinder

This video shows how to collar a cylinder. The collar of a cylinder is a plate or ring used under the head of the cylinder for a lock. Put the clay on the spinner. Mold the clay while spinning the spinner. Mold it first to the shape you want. Tighten the neck of the vase that you are molding. By tightening the neck of the vase, you are now shaping the collar of the vase. Shape it to the size and design you want. Enjoy making your own vase with the color you want.

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