Monday, January 31, 2011

Kennedy Creek Pottery- Part 1

How do we judge if our time spent is worthwhile? By money in the bank or the size of the house we live in or how we spend our free time and with whom. By my measure it couldn’t get much better than this last weekend. Good food, good friends, good art and I might add a very good dog.
After Suzanne, Debi and I met Maggie just outside of Olympia Washington for a few groceries we went to a second hand store to find treasures. I found a box of what I thought was old tops but now I don’t think so, I don’t know what they are.
I also picked up some old brushes with nice color on them for a wall piece I'm working on...
 and some stencils and other odds and ends... a great start to the weekend.
That night we made some fun clay monsters to warm up to the clay then the next day we started on so many fun projects it will take several posts to tell you about them.
One project we did was “Sgraffito”. 
Sgraffito is a technique produced by starting with an unfired clay tile (white in this case) then painting on at least two layers of contrasting slip, black for us. You then scratch or carve into the top layer to reveal the white underneath. 
“Sgraffito Pottery was once considered to be the vessels of kings. From the Byzantine emperors to the Russian czars, Sgraffito has been the earthenware for the "blue-bloods" of Europe's finest houses. Sgraffito Pottery is defined by the intricate designs that have been actually scratched into the surface of the clay before firing. This sort of pottery is often made with bold colors and coated with a lighter liquid clay for contrast. It is at this point that the designs are scratched into the pottery showing the base color underneath. Article Source:
 This is Maggie our host rolling out a slab of clay.
 White tiles with black slip.
 Suzanne is working on a wonderful sgraffito Madonna and child, Debi is building a tent city (a later story).
This is our work before it is fired with a clear glaze on top.
 From top left to right, Tory-crow, Suzanne-Madonna, Debi-tree
Middle row, Maggie- turtle, Suzanne- flower, Maggie- Celtic chicken
Bottom row, Tory- crow, Debi-flower, Tory- bird on bamboo.
I'm so pleased with the success we all had, Maggie is an excellent teacher organized and articulate she makes learning a new project a real joy.
This is Spud he sleeps in the studio visits the house, cleans up spilt stew and makes everyone welcome, a very good dog.


Anonymous said...

Oh, I love Spud!!! What fun you all had at Maggie's, great work all of you, but you all already know that, Ha!

Anonymous said...

Well, that one was from me, forgot to put my name. A.Talie

stephanie brockway said...

Those tiles are awesome!! almost looks like wood blocks. What a great weekend!!
ps. your finds are great those are tops!

lynda Howells said...

Oh my goodness this bring back memories. I used to be a potter but due to problems with my hands and their strength..l can no longer be a potter! Those tiles are SOOOOOOOOOOO beautiful. What an amazing tutor. I am glad you had so much fun.xxlynda

Robin Olsen said...

Fabulous tiles--I want a whole wall of them!

Tory Brokenshire said...

Thank you for all your kind words, it was so fun to do a new type of art.

LouiseB said...

Hello Tory,
These tiles are great. Of course I'm a huge black and white fan.
And a "Spud" to boot.
What a great weekend you must have

Anonymous said...

Tory--ex-neighbor here! Those tiles are wonderful, wish I could be part of your 'gig'. I wanted to tell you that your finds are not tops, they are plumb bobs/lines that hang at the end of a line for builders to show vertical direction. I'm sure you will make fantastic art with them!

lynda Howells said...

Hi..your ex next door neighbour beat me too it about the "tops" I went and did some digging and found an image on googlexxlynda

Tory Brokenshire said...

Hi Louise and thanks Lynda and Maggie for looking into the thingie top bob? I will post pics as soon as I use them.

Dayna Collins said...

An amazing weekend! Thank you for sharing about your tme away and for excellent photos of your beautiful tiles!