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Published Apr 17, 2020

wheel thrown bowlThe cereal bowl selection at my house consists mainly of all of my reject bowls from over the years. It's a motley crew of old, wonky pieces that make me want to reach for the nearest sledgehammer every time I open the cupboard. So I am on a mission: to replace them with more recent work that is finally feeling a bit more resolved and successful.

So since I am bowl obsessed, I thought I would share an inspirational bowl video. In this clip, an excerpt from her DVD Creating Curves with Clay, Martha Grover demonstrates how she dresses up a basic ice cream or cereal bowl with curves inspired by orchids and flowing dresses. Enjoy! — Jennifer Poellot Harnetty, editor


This clip was excerpted from Creating Curves with Clay, which is available in the Ceramic Arts Network Shop!

Wheel thrown bowls by Martha Grover

To learn more about Martha Grover or to see more images of her work, please visit

Helpful wheel throwing terms:

Compression: In wheel throwing, the act of hand or finger pressure on the clay, resulting in lower moisture content and a denser structure. Lack of compression in bottoms of pots can result in S-cracks. Source: Clay: A Studio Handbook

Pottery Bat: A pottery bat is a pottery throwing accessory that enables freshly thrown work to be removed from the throwing wheel without the damage or warpage that can occur from touching the pot directly. Pottery bats also make it possible to return a piece to exact center to work on later.

Throwing bats can be made from most any rigid material, but wood, wood composites, plastics, and plaster are the most common. Except for plastic, these materials are all porous so pots will release from them easily as they absorb water from the clay. If the material is not porous (e.g., plastic) the pot must be wired off before it sets up too much, or it will crack as it shrinks.

Wheel-wedging: Working the clay up and down in a cone shape on the wheel to align the platelets in a spiral formation and thus increase control in centering and throwing. Source: Clay: A Studio Handbook.

**First published in 2013.