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Pottery or ceramics?

Pottery and ceramics are two terms often used interchangeably, but they are each slightly different in their relationship to world of clay. Understanding their differences may help you appreciate the diversity within this art form.

so lets break it down. Pottery typically refers to the creation of objects through the use of a pottery wheel. Potters sit at a spinning wheel, shaping clay into various forms, such as bowls, cups, and vases. This method can provide precision and consistency in the shape and size of the final product. When properly trained you can make relatively similar shapes time after time using measurements and a throwing tool called a pointer.

On the other hand, ceramics is a broader term encompassing various techniques, including pottery and hand-building. While pottery revolves around the wheel, hand-building encompasses the creation of ceramics through techniques like pinching, coiling, and slab construction. Hand-built ceramics often possess a more organic and irregular appearance, showcasing the artist's unique touch and creativity. This method often allows for greater experimentation and artistic expression.

More or less, pottery is a subset of ceramics, characterised by its use of the wheel-throwing technique. Ceramics, on the other hand, a wider range of methods, including hand-building, slip casting or mould making. Each area has their own distinct aesthetic qualities and offer artists and craftsmen different avenues for creativity and expression within the world of clay artistry.

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