I’m now running One to One and One to Two ceramic workshops from my pottery studio in Dudley Road, Hastings.
If you would like to create a special item; be it a christening bowl for a new member of the family, a memorial plaque or an ashes casket for a funeral, an exuberant sculpture for a wedding – I can help you catch that elusive idea and turn it into an artwork you will be proud of.
Perhaps you like Rhinos…
Please email me at studio at annakeiller.com or have a look at my website, where I will be updating new ceramic workshop dates shortly. My mobile number is 07722171818 if you would like to discuss a potential project.
This stag beetle bowl was made using ceramic slip – I call it ‘ The Stag party’. Each section is cast separately and then joined together inside a plaster mould.
You can buy ready made slip in buckets or make it up yourself if you have a big mixer of some sort, or a blunger. We used this technique during a recent ceramic workshop.
Remove your piece of textured clay…
And place it inside a plaster mould, textured side facing the wall…
You can also dip cotton textiles in slip before placing the cloth inside your mould. It is important that all clay pieces are properly attached to each other and that they lie flush against the wall of the mould.
It is a messy old job! Once the bowl is finished you leave it to dry for a few hours before removing it from the plaster mould.
I will upload the finished results shortly. For more information, this is a link to my work shop diary.
We are still making ceramic plates at the Dudley Road workshops. This week we have been busy decorating them.
Under glazes work a bit like water colours, and will need a coat of transparent glaze on top to look their best.
It has been a great experiment, and I am looking forward to see what the final result will be once they have all been fired.
To find out more about my workshops, please go to www.annakeiller.com/workshops
Annie wanted to make a big round sculpture so she started by incising pieces of clay, placing them inside a big plaster mold. She then completed the globe using coils of clay to form the top sphere.
The globe is taken out of the mold and patted into shape. We wanted round, not pudding!
As long as a shape is completely closed up so that no air can escape, it can handle a fair bit of abuse. But once you create an opening and the air escapes, you will need to make sure it is properly supported.
Creative juices have now hit the ceramic workshop in Dudley Road; during the four hour session an incredible amount of plates were made using lace, sacking, shells and stamps to decorate the clay.
This was our second plate making session and it is exciting to be part of such an explosion of creativity.
The plates are placed in the sunshine to dry.
For more news about my sculptures and ceramic workshops please go here
Clay is great for picking up the most delicate detail. Use textured materials such as sacking or lace, corrugated cardboard, mesh produce bags, or found objects such as wood blocks, leaves and ferns and gently roll or press your chosen pattern into a thin slab of clay. Peel away before you place the clay on your paper plates the way I described in my previous post.
You can also use plaster sprig molds to create small animals, shells or other figures to decorate your plates and make a set of plates held together with a common theme.
I am planning a new series of workshops starting Thursday 22 September at 11-3pm in my studio in Dudley Road, Hastings. The plan is to make a series of plates using paper plates in different sizes. Plates are great canvases for surface decoration and we’ll experiment with paper stencils and lace, sprig molds, underglaze and oxide designs as well as trying out different glazing techniques.
If you can’t make it to my workshop, then this is what we’re going to do; we start by rolling out a slab to a desired thickness of about 1 to 1,5 cm . When rolling out a slab it is a good idea to start by throwing it across the table in different directions until it is somewhere close to 5-6 cm thick. Roll the clay with the rolling pin, taking care not to roll excessively over the edges as they may get too thin. Roll two or three times on one side and then flip it over and roll some more. Leave the slab to dry to a soft leather-hard stage. The clay needs to be able to bend without cracking, but you don’t want it to be so soft that you leave fingerprints in your clay as you work.
Choose the size of your plate and place it upside down to use as a template for cutting the slab.
As you cut, keep your knife perpendicular to your work surface to create a square rim. Remove excess clay and smooth out the rims by sliding your finger across the edge of the rim.
Flip the clay slab, smooth the top edge then place it into a paper plate, lining up the edges.
Experiment with pressing the clay into the paper plate with your hands or you can sandwich your clay between two plates. The plate you are creating will have a different look depending on your
Allow the plates to dry to leather hard in the bottom paper plate, and then check if they stack together nicely and if they sit on the table without rocking. If not, you will need to damp them up a bit with a flower mister or a wet sponge and then put them back in the mold to straighten them out. Next, check the rim of each plate to see if it needs shaping or smoothing down. You may want to write your name at the bottom of the plate at this stage.
During the next workshop on Thursday the 29th we will look at different ways of decorating the plates. I’ll discuss this in my next blog, so welcome back!
To sign up for this workshop or any other, please go here
During this workshop we concentrated on exploring textures while making ceramic bowls using hump and press molds. The bowl to the left is made by draping sheets of clay across a plaster hump mold and removing it a few hours later when the clay has hardened enough to keep the shape. We still had to shore it up with a towel tightly wrapped across the bottom of the bowl…
I love collecting plants from the garden to use in my workshops
Andrew opted for ferns, too.
My next ceramic workshop is planned for Sunday 22May at 10.30-1pm. Please contact me here if you’d like to attend. My workshops are suited for everyone whatever previous experience. There are still two places available!
- Make a bowl without using a wheel
- Create beautiful ceramic sculptures using simple techniques
- Glaze and Smoke fire your sculpture
- Introduction to plaster casting
- Try out techniques developed by working artists…and let me fire your imagination!
Come and discover how much fun you can have with a piece of clay in my workshops. I’m a successful ceramic sculptor and I love sharing my skills and experience in small, hands on workshops in my fantastic Old Town Hastings studio.
Make your own unique pieces; have fun creating something that changes from clay to an objet d’art in front of your eyes.
The workshop span two weekends and cost £35 per weekend and include all materials, tuition and a lovely lunch.
First workshop take place Sunday 7th March at 10-3pm at my studios in Dudley Road in Hastings.
During this session we create ceramic bowls and sculptures which I’ll bisque fire ready for our second meeting on Sunday 21st March 10-3pm when we will smoke fire the work in the garden outside my studio. Smoke firing in galvanised dustbins using sawdust is a technique I have worked on for over 10 years and I believe it is unique to me. It is amazingly easy to learn, though, and fun.
Please email me here for further information.