Daily Archives: July 16, 2011

Creativity Group’s Clay Workshop

I’m part of a low-key little group that meets once-a-month. We gather at each other’s homes and enjoy a workshop facilitated by that month’s host. Today, friends and neighbors will be seated around the kitchen table on Jane Street as we transform plain,  white clay tiles into something of our own. It feels great knowing I’m going to introduce them to something that I feel passionate about. The finished sizes will be 6 x 6 and 4 x 4. To help my friends understand the different methods we’ll use, I made up a ‘sampler’ of different techniques:

  • Sgraffito
  • Relief, shallow and deep
  • Underglazes
  • Textures
  • Sprigging
  • Slip trailing

Because they’ve never worked with clay, I’ve done some advance work…I painted some of the small tiles with blue and green slip to prep for sgraffito.  I am providing some designs they can use for inspiration. There will be much in the way of materials and tools, so they can experiment with many textures and techniques. After they’re done with their masterpieces, I’ll take the tiles to the studio for drying, bisquing, and glazing for a nominal fee. We’re usually in need of refreshment after working. One of the best parts of the event is our visit with each other afterward. We concentrate so hard on whichever project we’re working on, we don’t chat much till afterward. Which is fine, because creativity is the focus. The group is a way for women to explore their creativity in a group setting. We have built a little community and are committed to the process. Each month we look forward to treats with our friends, too! I made homemade ginger bread and will serve it warm with lemon sauce. Seasoned popcorn for munchies. Apple for crunch. Simple but good. Washed down with lattes, black or herbal tea. Things are a little different this year. Usually, we’d meet outside, but it’s a very wet July, so it’s indoors this go round. We work well together and soon the rhythm we’ve established will wash away the workaday world. Soon we’ll be sitting around the kitchen table working with clay. Life is good.

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