Unifying Form & Surface with Sean O’Connell

In ceramics, the best surfaces are not just slapped on top of a pot, they are integral to the pot. They complete the pot. In this video, Sean O’Connell shares his expertise on how to create surfaces that become one with the form. In addition to demonstrating decorating methods such as brushwork, carving, resists, and more, Sean focuses on the particular characteristics of each form and how to use design principles to tie the form and surfaces together.

Runtime: Approximately 2 hours, 40 minutes

Check out the free excerpt above! CLAYflicks subscribers can view the full-length video by clicking the orange links below!


Chapter 1 – Overview
Chapter 2 – Simple Brushwork
Chapter 3 – Banded Line Decoration
Chapter 4 – Grid Based Patterning on a Plate
Chapter 5 – Grid Patterning on Vertical Forms
Chapter 6 – Abstract Pattern on a Plate
Chapter 7 – Stencils, Resists, & Copper Wash
Chapter 8 – Vertical Stripes on a Bowl
Chapter 9 – Zigzag Grid-Based Pattern
Conclusion (and out-takes!)
Bonus – Polka Dotted Plate with Depth

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Sean O'Connell

About the Artist

Sean O’Connell is a studio potter and educator living in Red Lodge, Montana. Currently, he is the education and communications coordinator at the Red Lodge Clay Center. After earning a BFA in sculpture at the Kansas City Art Institute, he became increasingly dedicated to making functional pottery and pursued his MFA in ceramics at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York State in 2009. He has participated in a number of artist residencies including a two-year fellowship at the Archie Bray Foundation in Helena, Montana. In 2013, he was named one of Ceramics Monthly’s Emerging Artists and in 2016 as one of 6 Emerging Artists at the annual NCECA conference in Kansas City. He has taught at numerous universities and colleges; most recently at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Alberta College of Art + Design in Calgary, AB, Canada. To learn more about Sean O’Connell and see more images of his work, please visit


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