Three boards of bowls, made on batts and set outside to dry. These are my medium bowls, made with just over a pound of clay. They are thrown with thin rims and thick bases to allow a tall foot-ring to be turned in. The delicate rims dry quickly, meaning it doesn’t take long until they can be flipped over for the bases to firm up. I leave them uncovered overnight inside, and are usually in the perfect condition for trimming when I arrive the next day.
I like to leave soft throwing rings both internally and externally, these parts aren’t turned so there isn’t much risk of losing them and they affect the glazes well – it’s only subtle, but they pool in the shallow grooves left by my fingers and create bands of varying colour.
Pottery as a craft requires storage, places to keep pots in their various steps, be it just thrown ware, bone dry work waiting to be fired, bisque pots lingering until they can be glazed and all the finished work that’s fired. Not to mention all the clay, glazes, raw materials, kilns, worktables, pugmills, plaster batts for reclaiming clay and the wheels. If you’re intending to make a living from it, the quantities of each quickly grow and studios fill up.
Some pots begin by taking up too much room, such as these bowls. As they’re so thin, lifting them off the wheel simply isn’t possible without them deforming. This means they remain on batts and every five fill up a board, if it’s a bowl making day, the studio quickly runs out of space, but when they’re turned and bone dry, it’s possible to stack them and I often store them in piles of ten or more until they’re ready to be bisque fired, after which they can be stacked even higher and take up barely any room.
There’s a tremendous amount of moving ware around, managing and monitoring how pots dry, keeping them in the right condition for turning or glazing and to simply free up more space for new work being made. It’s a continuous cycle but one I’m sure will be far easier when I setup my own studio. At the moment I manage not only my own work, but thirty-two students, Lisa Hammond’s one off pots and the functional soda fired ware we both make, it’s never-ending and a constant juggle.