Alice’s Tea Party, pottery project in progress

When I was a kid, I took art lessons for a number of years in the garage of the professional artist who just happened to be living in our neighborhood. I’m not great at drawing, but I enjoy working with my hands immensely, and I’m usually happier if I’ve got a regular hobby going that involves making or drawing art.

For a while, that was jewelry-making, and I may post some of my jewelry and sketches online at some point. I got overexcited about making necklaces symbolizing fairy tales and myths which was neat, but expensive, and took a lot of creative energy. At the moment, I’m mostly doing art and comics on my iPad with my fancy new stylus.

I’m also painting pottery. Not making pottery. Painting it. You know, like at the pottery painting places. I go to the Color Me Mine near where Mike works. You buy pieces of unfired pottery and then paint them using on-site supplies.

My current project is a three-part teapot:

three part teapot

The top part is a lid. The middle part is a kettle, and the bottom part is a cup.

I decided to do it up with scenes from the original illustrations of Alice in Wonderland. (Alice was on my mind because of my recently published story about the hatter and hare having a love affair.) On the lid, I’m doing Alice being assailed by cards:

alice cards

And on the middle, I’m doing the tea party.

alice tea party

On the bottom, I’m doing the Cheshire cat, but he’s not so much Tenniel’s as a blend of different interpretations of the Cheshire cat, painted purple. I don’t have any photographs of that part of the kettle yet anyway, so moving on.

I’ve finished the lid and had it fired. The firing process is interesting because of the way that it erases a lot of the shading, while at the same time making things look polished and vibrant. I often like the look of the unfired pottery better than the look of the fired pottery, but that might be because you can make the unfired version look however you want; the firing will still be a surprise. (A relatively predictable one, yes, but it makes some changes.)

The lid, unfired:

Alice lid spinning unfired

The lid, fired:

Alice lid spinning

I did a sketch of the tea party, but I’m still coloring it in. (You can see where I am marking off and painting a yellow tablecloth.) For some reason, the gif we tried to take didn’t work. It left out some angles which makes it kind of trippy. I added in a couple stills:

Alice pot spinning Alice pot showing Alice Alice pot showing hare and alice

I’ll post updates as the work continues. Alas, I am slow and perfectionistic about this, as I am about everything else. 😉


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