Coil Building Demo - Get Quicktime.

Video Clip 1 - Coiling
Mary begins the process by rolling a slab of clay between two dowels to maintain a consistent thickness throughout the base. Placing the rolled base to the side, she begins to shape some of the coils. Angling her hands, Mary rolls the coils out of lumps of clay to use in building the base.


Video Clip 2 - Smoothing the Outside
After stacking several coils to a height of about 4", Mary smoothes the coils together in a vertical motion using a wood tool. She switches to a horizontal motion to strengthen the wall. To ensure the wall and base stay put together, Mary coils a thin coil and presses it into the interior base of the structure, smoothing it out after she finishes.

2.3 megs

Video Clip 3 - Building the Body, part1
In order to build the back and neck of the giraffe, Mary must boiled the next section with precision. Carefully, she keeps one side straight for the neck, and begins to taper the back side by stacking coils at an angle, rather than straight up.

2.9 megs

Video Clip 4 - Growing up, up, up..
Continuing to taper the back, Mary begins to look at the piece and guess its final height. She smoothes the coils inside and out at a halfway point, before the opening becomes too small as she continues to build up.

3.0 megs

Video Clip 5 - Attaching the Head
Pinching some extra clay from the back of the neck, Mary begins to define the giraffe's mane. She uses a thick wood tool to define the hairline and to create the mane. Pinching off a small chunk of clay, Mary shapes it into a head and hollows it out. Looking at the shape she decides where to build the face versus where to attach the head to the neck. Before attaching the head, Mary creates the mouth and defines the giraffe's snout using a wood tool to cut and a pencil-shaped tool to make holes and marks.

3.6 megs

Clip 6 - Legs & Hooves
A hole remains in the top of the head, which Mary patches with a small disc of clay, smoothing it over the hole. She completes the main, attaching a coil to the back of the head, and defines it to match the existing mane. Using a pencil tool, Mary pokes holes, and then rolls and shapes tiny coils for the ears and antlers. Dipping them into water, she pushes the ears and antlers into the head. Using tiny flat ovals of clay to create layers, Mary adds the giraffe's eyes, which give the face more expression.

2.9 megs

Mary will let the piece dry for one week, and then fire it to a bisque finish. Using an oxide wash, she will coat the mane and wipe the excess away, doing the same to the face to ensure the wash remains in all of its features. Then she will paint the giraffe's spots, and fire it again. The final step in creating the giraffe is adding the tail. Mary shapes a coil into a point, and uses a rib tool to create a hairy tip on the other end. Then she dips the point into the water and sticks it in place. We have a finished giraffe!

Other Demos
Slab Building
Press Molding

Wheel Throwing
Slip Casting