new sea urchin crop*

new sea urchin crop
Originally uploaded by Bridgman Pottery
This is half of the sea urchins I've made since Christmas. I'm firing today for the first time since January- there are maybe a dozen more sea urchins in the very full kiln.

I know I've written about sea urchins before, but they are some of my favorite things to make. I like them best when they're bisqued, bright white, matte, pristine. Their form shines and I don't get distracted by things like shine.

I made two types of urchins, additive urchins, decorated with little dots of slip- I really like the ones that I've left spiky, some are almost too sharp to touch. Those may be my favorites. Then there are the subtractive urchins, the ones that I've carved or pressed designs in. The one in the back right is one of my favorites- I love the smooth, clean surface interrupted by the incised lines.

Some of these are intended to become salt cellars or votive holders- those with the large open mouths. The more closed-in forms are sometimes used as vases, so they must be glazed so they'll be water tight, but I wish that I could leave all of them as is without tampering with their function.

* My favorite picture of sea urchins was taken by my husband. He cropped in a large photo and titled it "sea urchin crop," for what he thought was an obvious reason. I look at the same photo (in the post referenced above) and think of a harvest or large group. My garden thinking prevades all else in my mind.