Bonsai Potter

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Bonsai Potter

Post  bonsaipotter on Sat Sep 15, 2012 9:13 am

Hello.
I’ve been a bonsai enthusiast for a long time and driven by a need for pots and not having ready access to a diverse commercial offering, I’ve started making my own over the last 12 months. The journey has been a very interesting one having started from a zero base with ceramics. Even more than with bonsai, ceramics is a great mix of art and science. I’ve recorded that journey and all my experiments and observations in my blog Here

To open my participation on the Internet Bonsai Club I have a few pictures that I’ve not posted on the blog of a couple of my latest pots at bisque stage. I hope you enjoy them.

I’ve concentrated on just a few different shapes of pots, all of a similar larger size, aiming to get the process worked out and the challenges resolved at this size. The clay is an iron tinted stoneware which fires a buff colour.

The first one is a rectangular pot which at this stage is about 410 x 300 x100. It will contract another 6 or 7% in the final glaze firing.







The second one is an oval at about 440 x 330 x 90 at bisque.







I'm keen to get some feedback on the designs and will post more shots over time.
Happy Potter


Last edited by tony on Wed Sep 19, 2012 12:06 am; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : Spacing between images)

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  JimLewis on Sat Sep 15, 2012 12:42 pm

If you weren't in OZ, I'd be a customer -- especially for the rectangular one. Too few western potters do anything other than round (rarely oval) pots.

Nice looking work. I'd like to see them after firing.

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  rps on Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:57 pm

Process aside, you've realised grace and balance in your contours and dimensions --- ie: they just look "right".
No mean feat, that. Well done.

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Russell Coker on Sat Sep 15, 2012 3:47 pm




Beautiful work!

And Jim's right, it is nice to see a pot that didn't come from a wheel.

R

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  cbobgo on Sat Sep 15, 2012 3:57 pm

Beautiful!

- bob

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  JudyB on Sat Sep 15, 2012 5:10 pm

nice... will be interested in seeing the glazes you choose for these.

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Dale Cochoy on Sat Sep 15, 2012 7:09 pm

Nice classic shapes.

Cast? From Chinese or Japanese pots?

It's not a pot until it's last firing Smile

D.

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  marcus watts on Sat Sep 15, 2012 9:42 pm

beautifully neat lines - looking forward to seeing the glazes / oxides you choose - personally i really do like a central drain hole too, i dont like too much moisture under the trunk area. But oz is a lot dryer than cornwall Very Happy

cheers for showing the first stages

Marcus

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  John Quinn on Sun Sep 16, 2012 1:31 am

Welcome to the IBC! Great results, looking forward to more.

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Some glazed pots

Post  bonsaipotter on Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:13 am

Here are some pictures of some finished pots I've made since March.
I make the pots in press molds that I've created from a clay 'positive' crafted from scratch; so no they are not cast from an existing pot.
I'm still working on the finish and the 'right' proportions of shape - you just feel where the changes need to be and it's nice to be able to. As an example the feet on the ovals are too high and I have, using a diamond cutting blade, cut them in half to give a much more harmonious result. The mold has also been adjusted for future pots.
Also on glazes, I continue to trial and test, but that is a whole world of study in itself.















Here's the big blue oval after the podiatry, supporting a Lilly Pilly and dressed up for display. Makes all the difference.



Happy Potter www.bonsaipotterycoy.blogspot.com


Last edited by bonsaipotter on Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:24 am; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : To add a picture)

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:40 pm

Beautiful work.
Khaimraj

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Khaimraj Seepersad on Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:48 pm

Interesting Happy,

you settled at cone 6 and I settled at 08,with a vitreous body and enamel based glazes up to 010 [ Orton]
I have also been testing Egyptian Paste bodies [ single fire, lazy me ] as bonsai pots.
BUT I have no frost to contend with.
I am only now starting to really think about making my own bonsai pots.
Locked onto your blog and will continue to read, as you go.
Thanks.
Khaimraj

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Guest on Sun Sep 16, 2012 5:19 pm

Hi bonsaipotter

You make very nice pots, I would love to buy one, from you, one day....consider glaze on the feet on some of them, this could give you more customers... ( me Smile)

Kind regards Yvonne

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Dale Cochoy on Sun Sep 16, 2012 6:28 pm

That Lilly pilly , which i know nothing about, is a very nice style and a great shape!

D.

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New pots

Post  bonsaipotter on Sat Oct 20, 2012 10:55 am

Hello again.
Today I'd like to post a few new pots. Some of them are those I posted originally at bisque; now finished.


This one is a rectangular pot 360 x 255 x 71


This one an oval pot at 405 x 300 x 82


This another rectangular at 335 x 235 x 77


Another rectangular pot at 377 x 270 x 91


This Oval has a sculpted profile on the side and is 410 x 299 x 84


Another rectangular pot at 380 x 278 x 91

With these pots I might have finally got to a point where I think they may be good enough to sell. What do you think?

Happy Potter
www.bonsaipotterycoy.blogspot.com
bonsaipottery@gmail.com

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  cbobgo on Sat Oct 20, 2012 5:44 pm

I'd buy the yellowish oval with the sculpted sides. They are all really nice.

- bob

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Rob Addonizio on Sun Oct 21, 2012 12:29 am

Yes I must concur, your pots are definitely sellable Very Happy

Keep it up!
Rob

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  ironhorse on Sun Oct 21, 2012 11:41 pm

Agreed!

Dave

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Guest on Mon Oct 22, 2012 5:56 am

bonsaipotter wrote:Here are some pictures of some finished pots I've made since March.
I make the pots in press molds that I've created from a clay 'positive' crafted from scratch; so no they are not cast from an existing pot.
I'm still working on the finish and the 'right' proportions of shape - you just feel where the changes need to be and it's nice to be able to. As an example the feet on the ovals are too high and I have, using a diamond cutting blade, cut them in half to give a much more harmonious result. The mold has also been adjusted for future pots.
Also on glazes, I continue to trial and test, but that is a whole world of study in itself.















Here's the big blue oval after the podiatry, supporting a Lilly Pilly and dressed up for display. Makes all the difference.



Happy Potter www.bonsaipotterycoy.blogspot.com

Looks like QUALITY stuff to me. I'm impressed! cheers

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Guest on Mon Oct 22, 2012 6:04 am

bonsaipotter wrote:Here are some pictures of some finished pots I've made since March.





Happy Potter www.bonsaipotterycoy.blogspot.com

I don't think I've ever seen this colour with such richness before. I really, REALLY love it! Exclamation Like a Star @ heaven

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New pots

Post  bonsaipotter on Mon Oct 22, 2012 7:10 am

Thanks to you all for the affirmation; I'll keep at it.
Happy Potter

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  bonsaipotter on Fri Dec 14, 2012 11:02 am

Some more pots from a recent firing.

This first one is a short oval at 425 x 310 x 78. The glaze is a light blue tone that makes the surface look a little patinated. A nice size and very useful pot.



The next one is my original oval design again, with a finished size of 407 x 300 x 84. I scored an own goal the first time I used this glaze on a pot that became quite badly deformed in the firing, which was a bit forseeable, althought apparently not at the time, and avoidable. This one is better - light green tones breaking beige and in great shape. The original one is now out there in my garden wrapped around a tree and it is a usefull reminder about just how little attention you place on the pot in observing a composition - you just don't notice the deformation, and also the visual appeal that does come from imperfect symmetry.



To show the flexibilty of mould made pots here is the same basic design with a squared rim flange; at 412 x 300 x 84. Just a small change but a different look. The picture doesn't do the glaze justice and sometimes with digital photography true colour rendering is elusive. Suffice to say it is formulated as a cream beige glaze but the application breaks the surface and colour. There are a number of stoney earthen colours here that make for a great composition. It looks like it's been carved from a piece of stone and buffed. At the same time the colours and depth of tone doesn't reach out and overwhelm, making a great 'frame' in a composition.



And finally for this firing is a rectangular pot at 407 x 300 x 84, in a glaze used before too. But it makes such an interesting surface that it's hard to resist using it.




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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Paul Stokes on Fri Dec 14, 2012 1:51 pm

JimLewis wrote:If you weren't in OZ, I'd be a customer -- especially for the rectangular one. Too few western potters do anything other than round (rarely oval) pots.

Nice looking work. I'd like to see them after firing.
I have to second that!

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Re: Bonsai Potter

Post  Jake16 on Mon Dec 24, 2012 2:57 am

I just want to say that you are my new favorite person. Smile Before I made my few pots I looked on goolge and youtube on how to do so. I only found this great video of this guy making tokoname pots, but they didnt show enough for me to do it. Then her you come along filling in the gaps, thank you so much. I can't wait to get back to school and start making pots again. Ive only read to post 30 on your blog so this question might be answered later in that but could you show (with pics/video if possible) your process on pushing the clay into the molds and attaching the feet.

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How to

Post  bonsaipotter on Fri Dec 28, 2012 4:54 am

Hi Jake and thankyou, it's good to share a little knowledge around and to see that someone is using it. The practice I use is identical to that you have seen by the old Tokoname guys on Youtube. It's the Lindsay Farr series that I found most useful. He had a couple of episodes dedicated to a couple of Tokoname potters demonstrating their technique. I couldn't beat that. As for attaching the feet that is just standard pottery 101. Score both surfaces, add a little slip and push them together.
Have fun back at school and just keep at it until it works for you.

Happy Potter

http://bonsaipotterycoy.blogspot.com.au

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Re: Bonsai Potter

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