In my studio clay class from fall and winter 2019-2020, we learned a technique derived from the work of Natalie Blake. Our instructor showed us how.
First we rolled out coils and balls of clay and arranged them on a board.
Then, we dropped a slab of clay over them. The soft slab naturally created valleys and mountains depending on the clay pieces beneath them. We then emphasized those differences by pressing with our hands…or you could take the board and drop it on the floor a few more times (lots more fun).
Here’s what I mean. I don’t have any tiles in process. But here is the back of a fired tile done in this technique. You can see a couple of clay pieces still stuck to the back of the tile. It’s not always possible to get them off without breaking the fragile greenware (dried clay unfired) object and it doesn’t hurt anything for them to stay.
You can also see the impression of one blob I did remove.
Now here is the finished version of this tile. I dip glazed it for the coloring.
Here are a couple more I did in the same method.
I created these tiles as explained above. Then I coated them with underglaze while still wet and carved lines in the contours. Then they were bisque fired. Then I splattered with with copper oxide wash and dip glazed them in a variety of colors, overlapping them.
That is how I achieved the richness of color. The chemicals in the glazes interact in so many ways. Here are closeups of the second tile.
I love the softness of the shapes of the tiles, and the unpredictability of the coloring, and how they combine in this method.