more sprigs

The Dulwich Festival Artists Open House brochure is out – look out for it around Dulwich & online here . I love that they have got the apostrophe correct!


sprigged vase

Some of my experimental vases are coming through their glaze firings. They are all about being playful, and sparking ideas. Most will be left to cook in my subconcious for the future.  This one is inspired by the poet Edwarth Thomas’ poem “Out in the dark, over the snow, the fallow fawns invisible go, and the fallow doe, fast as the starts are slow” 

dumpy vase

Some are a lot less interesting. This was an early vase shape – oval, which I like, but a bit dumpy. I think it looked better when I made it, so I’ve tried to compare the unfired and glazed versions – although photography does distort the shapes considerably, so it’s a crude comparison.

dumpy vase comparison

I think the vase has definately slumped in the firing.. it’s a bit more sprightly in its pre-fired form.  This is what porcelain does – is behaves more like a glass at top temperature (“pyroplastic”).

writing experiment

One of my writing experiments – with cross hatching on the words – is a bit too shiny, I think, although I like the streaky look.


leaves experiment

In the matt, pre-glazed version there’s more of a papery, water-colour quality, which I’d like to preserve. So my next experiments will be with terra sigilata, a kind of clay coating that has a gleam rather than a shine. It’s what the Romans used on all that ‘high status’ ware that’s always showing up on Time Team.

Ingrid WensIngrid Wens’s blog has some fantastic modern examples in different colours and textures. So I just need to learn how to make it – it requires lots of de-flocculation and siphoning (!)


4 responses to “more sprigs

    • Without the apostrophe, “open” would be a verb … the apostrophe problem comes up all the time in the world of artists’ books … but I really came here to say I love the Edward Thomas pot!


  1. Hi Carys, thanks for mentioning my blog. About the siphoning, the layer under the terra sigillata is fairly dense, so you can pour the terra out of the container without disturbing the under layer. It’s not how it’s supposed to be done but it works fine.


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