Winchcombe Pottery

I have never been to see Winchcombe Pottery, so when I was visiting the Lighthearts earlier in July they suggested we should go on a trip there.  In case you don’t know much about their history click here, needless to say Michael Cardew reopened the country pottery in 1926 with the help of Elijah Comfort and Sydney Tustin. It was then taken over by Ray Finch in 1946 and was run by him and his family until the last year. It is now run by Matt Grimmitt who is the Great Great Grandson of Elijah Comfort.

Entering the pottery they were emptying one kiln and getting ready to fill another ready for a glaze firing. Having never met Matt he recognised me on sight and I him due to the joys of social media.  He has his own Youtube channel which mostly covers his time before joining the Winchcombe team.


You can't really see the chimney till you get here

You can always spot a wood fired pottery from the chimney

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Recent Tiles

tiles from wall to wall

So these represent the best tiles I have fired in the last year, and include tests for brushwork and the saggar firing, there is so much variation and I have started to mount them in some new ways as I think these go beyond throw away objects.

For a while I have been thinking about tiles as an act of experimentation, they are something that can be created in the fraction of time for throwing, there is a lot less focus that goes into creating them, no hunching over the wheel.  In some ways they are quite disposable.

I don’t generally use tile for glaze tests as they don’t have gravity and thickness’s similar to pots but I do use them to test ideas, patterns, new  and more recently my saggars to see what effects are possible.  In these sorts of ways the tiles are part of the experimentation and systematic testing that I was used to when I was a chemistry student many moons ago.

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Announcement! Woodworking for Potters

I have been considering this for a while but this week I went and I did some filming at the day job. There is still a lot to get to grips with my canon when it comes to film and more than likely they will come up in this mini series.

So here it is the announcement:

So far there are going to be four episodes with a fifth one planned.

  • Throwing Stick
  • Cutting Wires
  • Name Stamps
  • Throwing Ribs

With saggar making planned for filming soon.

So here is a sneak peak of some of the tools I made:

So many tools where to start?

It was one busy day filming all these in one go.

At the moment the schedule will be to release fortnightly on a Wednesday starting this Wednesday (every two weeks for those not in the know)  there will be an article somewhere on the website and regular blog posts will be every Sunday.

I am also hoping to put together my first newsletter post soon so sign up to get the emailed about what’s happening.

I do want to film more things in the near future, what would you like to see?


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More Saggars

Sewriously the holes aren't great

A made some new saggar formers and saggars to fire in

So this week I made some prototype saggar formers and saggars, I mixed my own clay with sawdust, grog from broken pots and some molochite for added strength.  Now if I didn’t have a deadline I would let them dry over two weeks, but I had a deadline so I force dried overnight and fired the next day so you will see some cracks in the larger saggar.

Also if you want to make a saggar former don’t leave such big gaps as the clay can get stuck in them making the harder to remove.

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Tommy Kane – An Excuse to Draw

So recently I picked up Tommy Kane’s An Excuse to Draw, as a treat for myself as I reached 400 days in a row sketching, and painting.  I showed the start of the process on instagram but the randomness of my skill level changes daily and is still very frustrating.

Seriously Michelangelo?!

Lots of cross hatching even on the cover

I probably wouldn’t have shared this book but there was something I discovered with the first few pages that really hit home with me.

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