John Rodgers on sun 24 dec 06
My Christmas Gift to those on Clayart that can use it.
For small bowls -
(I'm right handed - so can't address this for left-handers)
1 to 3 lbs of clay - more if you have big hands
Center the clay ball
Flatten Ball to 2" to 3" thick
Fingers to the outside of the ball - touching the bat/wheelhead
Thumb to the center of the ball
Press the thumb down into the clay to a bottom thickness of 3/4 inch
(allows for trimming
Move the thumb outward toward the fingers, while curling the fingers in
towards the thumb, squeezing the clay with steady gentle pressure.
Allow the thumb to lead the operation, moving the clay faster from
center out, than the fingers can squeeze it in.
At the same time the clay is being squeezed, pull up.
If the thumb pressure, the finger pressure, and the upward pull are
co-ordinated, the new bowl can be pulled upward in a single stroke, with
the wall thickness thicker at the bottom, and thinning towards the top,
with a nice thickened rim right at the top.
For small bowls, this is a single hand, single action operation. No
tools required, except to cut from the bat/wheelhead. And if yo use
plaster bats, even that is not necessary. Just let it sit until it frees
With a helper to prepare the clay balls, one can throw (pull?) a bowl
about every 10-15 seconds.
Have a Merry Christmas, everybody.