I wanted to try and use the things I had learned from experimenting with coloured slips at Uni and from the online course I had taken with Lesley McInelly so I chose to make a series of pinched, footed bowls so that I could practice and experiment with applying slip decoration to a vertical surface.
I used commercial stains and some oxides to create my own coloured slips, I slaked bone dry clay in water, blended it with a stick blender, added stain and sieved it, adding water if needed to make it the right consistency for brushing on.
I tore wide strips of news print and brushed even layers of coloured slip onto the news paper using a variety of colours, I then waited for the slip to dry off a little, it needed to be moist but not shiny.
I applied the slip to the bowls by pressing and wrapping the strips of newspaper around the wall of the bowl, layering different colours over each other, I was trying to create a distressed look, `I also used a needle tool and paint brush handle to sketch marks onto the surface of the newsprint so the slip would adhere to the vessel just in those areas.
The results overall were very pleasing, it’s tricky to apply the slips in this way on a vertical surface but using this mono-printing technique creates layers of textured slip that look really interesting, there is also the chance to adopt a more gestural, painterly style of mark making to the surface using mark making tools.
After bisque firing I applied very light oxide wash to some of the bowls, followed by a clear glaze. On the insides I used a combination of layered commercial glazes that I felt were compatible with the external decoration.
Am always amazed at the transformation of coloured slips once they are high fired and glaze applied. All these slips and oxides are applied to a crank stoneware and fired Cone 6.