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From Kitchen to Studio.

It's always a pleasure for us to teach at Penland School of Arts & Crafts, and this time was no exception. We had wonderful students, many of who were K-12 art teachers. With such a group, there is always something for me to learn and add to my information when teaching. I love to look at studios and classrooms to see what tools and equipment artists are implementing into their space.

While in the glazing area of Penland's clay studio I spied a stack of ice-cube trays. It took a moment for me to figure out why they were there. The folks there were using them as containers in which to put a variety of under glazes or glazes, and then transport them to your table. Brilliant!

The trays are better for glazes than paint palettes, which usually are not deep enough to hold enough glaze. You can mix in the ice trays, too. And, best of all, they're cheap!

The plastic ice-cube trays at Penland were blue, but I prefer white, especially for color mixing. I also found the perfect size of plastic zip-lock bags that were large enough to store the trays in so the glaze could be saved for the next day.

The ice tray as a glaze holder was a new one for me--so practical for the classroom! Perhaps you're already using some of the kitchen items in your classroom: a whisk for mixing glazes, rolling pin for making slabs, wooden skewers or chop sticks for incising and sgraffito.

OTHER FAMILIAR GADGETS that might possibly be new to you are include a cheese cutter for faceting, biscuit/cookie cutters and a pizza cutter for cutting out shapes on a moist slab of clay, and a sewing-pattern tracing tool for cutting and/ or adding texture.

We all have used tools from the kitchen, sewing room or garage in our studios at one time or another. I bet there have been many times that you stood in a store's gadget aisle and thought to yourself, "I might be able to use that in the studio!"

Caption: Ice trays are great for holding, mixing and transporting glazes.

Caption: In addition to handy (and cheap!) ice-cube trays, other useful gadgets include (left to right) biscuit/cookie cutters, whisk for mixing glazes, cheese cutter for faceting, rolling pin for making slabs, pizza cutter for cutting out shapes from a moist slab of clay, and a sewing-pattern tracing tool.

Tracy Payne Gamble and David L. Gamble share a renovated church studio and home in Plainfield, Indiana. They have 50 years of experience between them, and teach clay workshops throughout the country.

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Title Annotation:Clay Tips from the Gamble Studio
Author:Gamble, David L.; Gamble, Tracy Payne
Publication:Arts & Activities
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2018
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