The Pottery Throwdown is on! Now in it's fourth season on Channel 4 (live Sundays at 7.45pm or available on 4OD), the show has some great challenges and we thought it would be exciting to take inspiration from the show each week and set our own!

 

We'll put the entries on social media and our followers will vote for their favourite. At the end of the series the person with the most votes overall will win a course and the two runners-up will win a workshop!

Challenge 1: Make a cheese dome with plate

The TV show set this as a throwing challenge, but as you'll be working from home we would suggest making your dome using a baking bowl or something similar as a slump-mould.

Our challenge is just a cheese dome, not the full set as on TV. You can decorate this with:

  • Underglaze colours or slips and we'll add a clear glaze 

  • Texture, carving and/or added relief decoration and choose a coloured glaze for us to dip

Either way focus on making the decorative knob.

FYI on the TV show they were calling underglazes glazes, most of the colours being applied by the contestants were underglazes and a clear glaze was then applied on top. 

Details

The speed at which they dry and fire work on the show is not advisable so we are going a bit slower, though still pretty fast. As you will be drying work quickly you'll need to ensure that additions like the knob are fixed together really well with scoring and vinegar slip.  

You will need to drop your work for firing on Sunday 17th between 11.30am and 1.30pm; it will need to be dry, ready to go straight in the kiln.

 

For this to be possible you will need to make your pieces during the week (before Friday) and let them dry to leather-hard by Saturday, during this drying stage wrap any smaller additions, like the knob in plastic to slow the drying in this area and make it even over the entire peice.

 

On Saturday you can fettle your work and apply slips or underglazes and then leave somewhere warm overnight to dry for Sunday.

Challenge 2: Make Candle Lantern 20cm High

Our challenge is to make a candle lantern just 20cm high. We're going to run this as a two week project, so that you can decorate with painting glazes and we will ensure we keep next week's challenge really small!

You will need to drop your work for Bisque firing, or arrange a collection, on Sunday 24th between 11.30am and 1.30pm; it will need to be dry, ready to go straight in the kiln.

We will return your work to you bisque fired on Wednesday 27th and you will have until Sunday 31st to decorate with painting glazes.

Focus on texture and architectural details and consider how the light will emanate from the piece.