How zee vases are made

wheelthrown pottery  ceramics clay stephanie young calmwaterdesigns artnouveau

  • I create your porcelain vase on the wheel. Each is thrown by me.

  • They wait, and dry a bit. A specific moisture content is ideal for trimming aka cutting a foot ring into the bottom.

  • I trim the bottom. Then I meditate with your blank vase. Working with my guides, my memories, the creative finagle out a design. Something that pleases me, feels right. A special piece for someone I perhaps haven't met yet.  

  • I then lightly draw the design on the vase. I work freehand.  Drawn and carved without measurement, sketches, templates, stencils, without any sort of grownup or professional method whatsoever.  The designs come through the working of my hand. The process. And alignment with source.

  • After a flurry of design decisions (that can be fine tuned later), I begin to carve.  For hours.  Delightful, delicious hours of solitude. Harmonizing line and form.

  • When they are finished I can feel it. Then they wait, and dry further.

  • FIRE! After the first firing, glazes are hand painted onto the carvings, around the carvings, in the carvings. With a variety of sumi brushes and squeezie bottles, in a process that has now evolved into a monster with more tendrils than the complex carving.  That's okay, more solitude for this diva;) Every vase has many glazes, some a dozen or more. A coat of many colors.

  • FIRE AGAIN! Your vase is then fired once more, at a higher temperature, to melt the glaze and vitrify the porcelain. Fingers crossed, prayers murmured, sage smudged.  Upon cooling, we have fabulous, permanent things.  Things that will outlast us all, to belong to people not yet born.  Pretty nifty eh?

  • I then go back to the wheel, sit down, and create another fabulous vase for you.  I may eat a sandwich or something before. Or nibble with my less dominant hand whilst working.

  • Each piece inspires the next.  There is no part of the process that does not have my love and adoration.