Getting the shape *right*Posted: March 2, 2017
Today I have been throwing larger pots again. Things I throw tend to come out more dumpy and squat than I mean to, especially with 6lb+ of clay. I have been looking at various tall, lean pots, and trying to figure out just where the wall curves – where the opening out of the bottom, becomes the tapering in at top. Often there is just one of these points, but on more complex pots, there maybe several, and the point on the pot at which these happen, have an enormous effect on the feel of the pot. Below I have crudely drawn over pots by Clive Bowen, Mike Dodd, and Phil Rogers, to try and make it clear to myself, visually, where the curves happen.
This jug by Clive Bowen, has one convex curve, or belly, in the very centre, and two concave curves either side. The first concave cure (at the top) is slightly narrower than the bottom one, and is the narrowest point of the pot. The very base, where it flares out, is the same width as the rim and the belly creating a balance. The flared base is a look I really like, as it makes the pot look grounded and sturdy.
The pot above by Mike Dodd, is more simple, and only has one main convex curve to its body. The widest point of this pot is about 2/3 of the way up. However, the horizontal lines carved into the body, are of equal width, evening the pots shape out, and creating balance. The rim is slightly narrower than the base.
The above piece by Phil Rogers is interesting. The main belly of the pot is in its upper half, but the lowest carved line an the highest are of the same width, leaving the very bottom to be slightly narrower than its shoulder. This makes the pot seem more elegant, and lean. The rim is the narrowest point, and is almost neck-like, creating an almost human form.