Slab Building with Handmade Texture with Sarah Pike

If you love the act of stamping texture into soft clay, this video is for you! Sarah Pike shares her techniques for creating beautiful slab built vessels with unique custom textures and designs. Not only does Sarah reveal her streamlined slab building techniques, but she also shares how to make the texture tools she uses to create one-of-a-kind designs. (Scroll down for more!)

$39.97 — $52.97

Runtime: 1 hour, 50 minutes

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A smart foundation!

Sarah has honed her process for years and has developed brilliant shortcuts and tricks along the way, starting at the very beginning. Even the way she rolls her slabs is intentional as it minimizes waste and cuts down on reclaim. She has also discovered that there are different work surfaces that work better at different stages of the process. A canvas covered board is perfect for rolling slabs because it does not dry them out too quickly. Placing slabs on cement board after they are cut to size, helps them develop a skin that helps them keep the shape when being formed into vessels, but still have enough flexibility.

Make it unique, make it your own!

It’s not hard to make stamps for clay, but what is challenging is making stamps that consider every line, including the main image and the outside edge. When all of this is considered, stamps can create interesting patterns in the negative space when grouped together. Sarah shares helpful tips that will help you make stamps that are attractive on their own, and when grouped to create an all-over pattern on your work. She also demonstrates how to make a texture roller for creating all over texture. These handy tools make short work of texturing an entire slab.

Slab built to last!

If you have ever had seams come apart or pots go out of round when slab building, you should watch how Sarah builds her pots. For example, she uses minimal water and avoids cracking at seams by adding a “bendy memory” to her slabs before they start to stiffen. To keep things round she utilizes a terra cotta flower pot as a tool. There are so many useful tips in here that are sure to help you improve your outcomes in the studio.

Embracing mistakes!

Sarah stresses that all of the forms she demonstrated began with failures and encourages you to embrace failures as steps to learning. She encourages you to not be afraid to try new forms and turn failures into teaching moments. Your skills and your work will grow as a result! So get ready to be inspired by this thorough and informative presentation!

About the artist

Sarah Pike is a full time potter living in Fernie, British Columbia, Canada. She makes functional slab-built pottery in her home studio on a an acre of land on the edge of a little ski town. Sarah majored in ceramics at the Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She then studied at University of Colorado in Boulder, and went on to do graduate studies at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. Along the way, she started a family, lived in a barn, and helped run her husband’s family ranch. Six years ago Sarah and her family decided to make the big move to Fernie, where they now live in a renovated old mining house. To learn more about Sarah, please visit www.sarahpikepottery.com.

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