Wednesday, June 15, 2011

More Teapots

It's been awhile since I've made my last teapot so I thought I'd give it a go again before I leave Japan. Teapots are a lot of work but once you get the hang of making the parts it's actually quick and easy.

My last teapot was bizen clay, but this time I used nabe clay which can be heated over a flame without breaking. So these teapots can be used for boiling water as well.

The picture above is of three spouts and 2 lids. The nabe clay is a dark maroon color and is extremely sandy. I have never seen nabe clay after bisque firing so I'm not sure what color it will turn out in the end, but I'm assuming a darker red color similar to red stone clay minus the metallic undertones.
Here are the spouts up close. They are quite thick at certain spots right now so it's hard to imagine how they will look on the teapot body.
Spouts are relatively easy to make, they just take some practice. It's similar to making a tiny vase.

Here is a drawing of what a typical spout looks like if cut in half. The red is the outline and the blue dashes are excess clay. After drying I will carve away the excess clay to make a thinner, shorter and lighter spout. I will also cut off most of the bottom to make the spout attachable to the body.

Here is one of the lids up close. (Sorry blurry pic) It looks just like a bowl at this point and the shape is just about the same only much thicker. Like I've said in past posts about teapots, the lid must be made upside down. So try to imagine the top where the thick part is.

This is a drawing of the lid and body. The blue area is what will be carved away (the thick bottom part from picture above) and the remaining part in red will be the handle.

The lid is actually quite easy to make since most of the work is done afterward when carving. The hard part is making the body. It is almost the exact same as making a tall bowl but the last step which determines it's a teapot is the most difficult. In the drawing towards the top you can see two steps sticking out, this is the step where the lid will rest.

Here is one of two bodies I made. You can see the top has a step for the lid. After making the body you must measure this opening and make the lid the same width so they will fit together.

I messed up on my first try making the step...It's extremely difficult bringing clay back down without it flopping over. Arai Sensei helped me a lot with this part.

So for now these parts will dry and I will carve them next week. I made an extra spout and extra lid just in case one doesn't turn out well so I have a back up.

Until Next time!

1 comment:

  1. I love your explanations...a good heads up for problems.
    Say Hi to Arai Sensei for me. I still want to send him something. Ideas?