DIY by Olga Ogorodnik. Learn about "Nerikomi" pottery technique

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

When I saw Olga's pottery I wasted no time sending her an invitation to become my guest blogger and asking her to show my readers how she made her unique pottery. To my delight she accepted my invitation! She has even created a DIY project for those who would like to try and make a ceramic bowl themselves. You need to do this in a pottery studio as you need a kiln. Otherwise, I think, this DIY project is suitable for beginners. It is fascinating to watch the birth of this unique bowl even if you are not going to do any pottery any time soon. Enjoy!

Hello all! I am Olga and I will show you how I work in "Nerikomi" technique today. I've made a square porcelain bowl to show you this Japanese technique in working with colored porcelain clay.

I had white porcelain clay to start with. Then I mixed it with the color pigments that I had in powder form. I prepared a few pieces of clay in different colors: magenta, cadmium red, ocher, dark cadmium yellow, white, olive and turquoise. 

Clay is ready, let's start!

I made two varieties of cakes. The cakes on the left side have the purple lower layer. The cakes on the right start have the ocher lower layer. All the cakes are just about to become multi-layered.

The second cake layers: ocher is on the left side and white is on the right side.

The third layers: yellow and olive.

The forth layers: cadmium red and turquoise.

The fifth layers: purple and yellow.

I roll the cakes flat with a rolling pin until they are 3 - 4 mm thick.

Then I roll them up:

I keep rolling them on the table chasing the air bubbles out:

The red rolls are done:

The ocher rolls are done too:

Then I cut the rolls into pieces 1 - 1,5 cm (0,5'') wide:

Then I placed them on a wet rag:

I do the same with the ocher rolls. The process reminds me of cooking. These pieces look like the sushi rolls for small people!

I need to put all the puzzle pieces in a picture:

Here I am starting to put my puzzle together:

I use both kinds of rolls for my puzzle picture:

At this point I decide if it is going to be a circle or a square:

It is a circle for now:

I put my circle picture on a piece of plastic wrapper and roll it flat:

It is 3 mm thick after I've rolled it down:

I have a square glass bowl that I am going to use as a mold:

The cake is being placed into the glass bowl carefully:

I am making sure that the porcelain bowl is going to follow that shape of the glass bowl nicely:

All the extra edges are being cut off:

The porcelain bowl is ready for drying:

It has been left to dry for three days. I used a wet sponge to smooth out the edges:

Then I glazed the bowl on both sides:

...and left it to dry for one day:

Then I wiped the bottom. The bowl was ready for firing in a kiln right after that (at 2200 F)

It is ready!

I've given it a name - "Dance"!

I hope you enjoyed this DIY project!

Olga Ogorodnik.

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