Monday, January 17, 2011

Tilton At Potter's Wheels/Trimming

I've just finished trimming and making a video of the pitchers I've been working on as I documented the process (and threw in some KILLER music in the bargain!). But first things first...

This morning I got an email from John Tilton telling me that he intends to revive his blog. In case you've been living on Mars and don't know John's work, John creates some of the most marvelous, innovative, and emotionally moving crystalline-glazed porcelain being made today. He's internationally known for his work, and rightfully so.

Incidentally, John is also the subject of one of my favorite potter portraits ever...

So I would suggest that you folks consider following John's newest musings if you aren't already thus connected. You can bookmark this
link to his blog or you can click on the link that you find along the left hand column of this blog after you're done with your visit here.


Now, here's a short video in which I illustrate how I trim my pitchers. Of note: Since the rims of my pitchers are irregular, they cannot simply be centered on the wheelhead. In good Red Green fashion -- though with considerably less class -- I duct taped together two 1"X1 1/2" blocks of wood. With a small foam pad atop those strips, the raised spout and the tall handle have room to extend below the rest of the rim, while still not touching the wheelhead. The foam keeps the rim from getting unduly dented.


  1. Great videos, John, I don't usually have patience for youtube....the music makes it twice as interesting. And John Tilton is awesome! Thanks for telling the world.

  2. John will be in my neck of the woods for a crystaline show and conference close to the NCECA too.

  3. Love the "cobbed" together wood blocks and foam~ brilliant! The music is excellent- who is playing?

    I really appreciate your videos- they are excellent.

  4. Thanks, folks.


    The music in this video is:

    first -- Tim O'Brien, Alison Brown, Mike Marshall, Philip Aaberg (composer of the song you're hearing) supergroup called "New Grange". The song is called "Cabin Waltz".

    second -- Aubrey Haynie's "Thonotosassa"

  5. OK, those are 2 more CDs I need to buy.

    I love watching you work John.

  6. hi john, great videos, great music. i love mr. tilton's work too. i was curious how you cut out the maple leaves... do you use a robo-cutter device or do it by hand?

  7. Thanks, Greg. We're a pretty good mutual admiration society of two.


    When I make the leaves I stack the paper 16 pages thick and staple them together. Then I cut them out with the kind of mini-utility knife that has the snap-off blades. It's not unusual to go through a section of the snap-off blade with every stack of leaves. I cut them out atop a plate of 1/4" plate glass.