Veronica Watkins – Covered Trays with Thrown and Hand-built Components

Hi, my name’s Veronica Watkins, and in this workshop I will be showing you how I make covered trays using thrown and altered components combined with hand-built parts.

I will discuss how to make the lid and tray work together and how to add interesting details.

These are processes that you can apply to making other kinds of forms as well and they will help you add structure to your forms and think in new ways.

I will also show you how to make small batch Terra Sigillata and demonstrate how I layer underglaze, wash and glaze to create my surfaces.

Inside this workshop, we will go over:

Part 1: Forming Demonstration

  • Using thrown cylinders we will discover how the lid form can be created.
  • How to make sure the lid fits the tray
  • How to slab build the tray and lid
  • Footing options will be demonstrated as well as ways to make the lid nest onto the tray.

Part 2:

  • Inspiration for the surfaces of my work and the importance of edges
  • All about color and form.

Part 3: Surface

  • Why and how to use Terra Sigillata.
  • How to make a small batch of Terra Sigillata in a recycled plastic water bottle
  • How to get the right layers of Terra Sigillata
  • Adding Mason Stain or oxides for testing.
  • How to use tape and wax to get crisp edges.
  • How to add wash and mask for additional layer of shapes
  • Spraying final layer

At the end of the workshop, you will be able to think about how to use these techniques for variations for new forms. You will also be able to easily create small batches of Terra Sigillata to experiment with.

Material List:

  • Potters Wheel
  • Basic throwing tool kit- ribs, sponge, cut off wire, stick
  • Throwing Bats
  • Slab roller or rolling pin
  • Tall water bottle
  • 600 grams of powdered clay
  • 1 tsp of Darvan 811 or Sodium Silicate
  • Commercial Underglaze
  • Liquid Wax Resist – I like Amaco or Aftosa
  • Blue painters tape
  • Exacto Knife
About Veronica Watkins

Veronica Watkins grew up in the Kansas City Missouri area. She received a BFA from Northwest Missouri State University in 1996; she went on to receive an MFA from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale in 2000. She has participated in residencies at Belger Crane Yard Studios and the Clay Studio at Missoula. She now resides on a 100-acre cattle ranch in Maryville Missouri where she takes care of her family and maintains a studio practice. She is the Assistant Professor of Ceramics at Northwest Missouri State University.

For me now more than ever, handmade pottery represents ideas of connection and intimacy with others. It facilitates interactions and comes into our most familiar and sacred spaces. It has the power to improve our daily existence while connecting us to a valuable history of human kind.

My work incorporates nuances of space and spaces that reappear as shapes and structures. Abstractions of shapes and forms from my journeys though architecture and the landscape emerge. I envision the work going on and out and being touched and physically considered by others. I choose processes that are lengthy and slow but are also gratifying. I suspect that I balance something intuitive and spontaneous in how I approach what I make.


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Workshop Includes

  • 2 Lessons
  • Workshop Certificate