2010-09-17

Tenth Street Ceramics


As mentioned a few days ago, we did a ceramics painting session at Tenth Street Ceramics in Monterey, which is owned by cousin Mariko.

Mariko's studio is really fun. In addition to selling her own ceramic creations, jewelry, and artwork, you can paint your own design on any of hundreds of different unfinished ceramic pieces. Paint your own plates, cups, mugs, saucers, pitchers, salt+pepper shakers - or decorations like cats, dogs, whales, turtles, tugboats, surfboards, candle holders - pretty much anything you can think of.

The whole casting process is really interesting and educational. It starts with gypsum molds, which are filled with a liquid clay solution called "clay slip". As the mold absorbs moisture out of the solution, a wall of clay starts to build up along the edge of the mold. After the wall is thick enough, the mold is emptied of any remaining liquid solution - leaving just a wall of clay along the inside walls of the mold. Once the wall of clay has dried enough, the mold is opened, and the piece removed. After cleaning any seams and extra clay off, the piece is fired in the kiln and a few days later is then ready for painting.

To paint a piece of your choosing with your own design just come on in to the studio, pick whatever unfinished piece suits you, sit down at a table, and paint it! The only thing you have to provide is the creativity to paint whatever design you want. When your are all done, the piece is glazed and fired in the studio's kiln. After a few days, return to pick up your creation! It's that easy - and a lot of fun.

Each of us picked a piece and painted it, and had a great time. Jacob picked a tugboat, Chris a fish dish, and Scott a mug. They all turned out great and we'll have the pieces with us as we continue our travels, which will be a fun reminder of our visit to Monterey!


Tenth Street Ceramics
1271 Tenth Street
Monterey, CA 93940
(831) 372-0124


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