Making & Decorating a Plate with Kip O'Krongly

In this video, Kip O'Krongly shares her techniques for handbuilding a plate with layered illustrated surface decoration. There are so many tips and techniques packed into this video, it will really help you improve your hand building outcomes, decorating skills, as well as your efficiency in the studio. ... (scroll for more!)


Available as a video download only

Runtime: 1 hour, 10 minutes

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Efficiency in a Small Space

Kip works in a small studio space, so every step of her process is tailored to be simple and not require a lot of tools. Rather than using hump molds for her plates, she builds the plate flat, adds a coil foot ring, and then creates a gentle curve using just her hands and the foot ring as a mold of sorts. Rather than using a slab roller, she uses a rolling pin with bands that create even thickness. Smart adaptations such as these abound throughout this presentation.

You’ll pick up tips on:

  • Making a nicely curved plate with just your hands and the clay
  • Avoiding cracking when adding coil feet and rims to slab built plates
  • Transferring illustrations from paper to ceramic objects using graphite
  • Using latex resist to make layered decoration
  • Preserving brushes used for latex resist
  • Dealing with dust when doing sgraffito
  • How to make a color gradient using underglazes and slips
  • And much more!

Layering with Latex Resist

Creating depth in ceramics—especially low fire work—involves putting the right marks down in the right order. You’ll discover how Kip uses latex resist and a few different materials, in a precise order to create dynamic surfaces on her low fired pots. Starting out with a swirled slip layer, Kip then transfers her illustration, and uses sgraffito to scratch through to the red clay beneath and make the illustration come alive. Next, she shows how to create an “ombre” look with underglazes.

After watching this video, you will have to tools you need to tackle slab built plates without a lot of equipment. You’ll also be able to explore the possibilities of layering slips and underglazes with sgraffito to create lively illustrated surfaces!

About the Artist

Kip O’Krongly is a studio artist and instructor living in Northfield, Minnesota. She earned a BA from Carleton College in 2001, and continued her ceramics education in clay studios across the country before returning to Minnesota as the Northern Clay Center Fogelberg Fellow, Materials Technician, and then Anonymous Potter Studio Fellow. Kip has been featured as a Ceramics Monthly Emerging Artist, on the cover of Pottery Making Illustrated, and was a Best in Show winner of the Strictly Functional Pottery National Exhibition. She exhibits work and teaches workshops across the country, is included in a number of ceramic publications and in 2014 was the recipient of a $25,000 McKnight Artist Grant.

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