Bronze bowl

Similarly to the ceramic bow I used the wooden bowl as my former, except after a few goes it wasn’t as crisp as I would have wanted. So using the illustrator files I already had I cut the same pieces in acrylic. I picked 5mm instead of 3mm like the former for the ceramic bowl. I used different thicknesses to hopefully compensate for the shrinkage of the ceramics. As the ceramics bowl needs to sit inside the bronze bowl it needed to be smaller. Although new earthenware roughly shrinks between 6% and 10%, it was to vague of a guess to work out so I made the ceramics first and up scaled the bronze slightly to counter the shrinkage. I was hoping the shrinkage of the clay and difference in thickness would be enough, I wasn’t far off. I know I should have taken the time to further work it out but I did not have a lot of time left on the project and I was very fed up with the complex mathematics I was already using. They fit together but it could fit better. If there was time to re do the bowl and improve it i wold work out the shrinkage rates properly and make them fit perfectly.

  • The first task was to cut the acrylic bowl in 5mm.
  • Then I bevelled the edges to the same angles at the previous MDF bowl.
  • next I glued and filled any gaps where I had sanded too much away.


  • The next step was to use the bowl as a former in a sand mould. This is a bronze casting technique which creates a solid carbonised sand box allowing, molten metal to be poured in to the appropriate shape. (see hand book for method. p29-32)
  • After the mould is made and the acrylic mould removed leaving a negative space. i was able to complete the bronze pour and make the actual bowl.
  • The bowl poured perfectly, the straight lines and accuracy of the acrylic produced a very precise bowl. The extra bronze in the photos is the excess material that bubbled up through the pour hole and air holes.
  • The next steps were to refine and polish the bowl, using and angle grinder with a cutting disk, I removed the excess bronze leaving just the bowl. Some of the edges were a bit rough due to easing the former out of the mould. So I sanded both with a air pressured sander and with a hand file to really perfect the edge. Unfortunately the Bronze pour happened a lot later than I had planned for. It is very easy to spend weeks finishing bronze and I did not have that much time to spend on the bowl.
  • After the edges were smooth I then polished the whole bowl up on the large polisher in the metal work shop. I found it really shined up the surface without taking to much of the texture from the sand mould away. However the polisher is a fairly large disk and i could not reach inside. If I had more time then using smaller dremle I would have tried to polish the inside but as i was on to the next project i just worked on the outside.



Ceramic bowl

It was a very lengthy process to make the bowl, i had to learn many new processes within in a short time frame to complete the bowl in 5 weeks.

  1. Firstly i had to design the bowl, this took drawing sketching, rough paper and card board maquettes, when the lack of precision was an issue I started deisgning in Solid works to make deisgn sheets and test the dimensions. This lead to Lazer cutting illustrator files to test the design further. After a few weeks of trial and error i was happy the the original dimension, I had to lazer cut the bowl in to MDF to make full size maquettes.  with all the piece of my bowl ready i needed to bevel the edges to make them sit together. this is where most of the struggle came from. I finlly managed to work out the side angles as 30 degress, however the bottom bevel and the base took a lot of time to work out. wiht the help of craig we made a wedge of wood at the perfect angle to shape the pieces. i belive the angel is roughly at 56 degrees.
  2. After applying shellack which is a type of varnish to the wooden bowl i made a Plater slip cast mould from the MDF form. Wood is pourous and wood absorb some of the plaster leaving the former stuck with in the mould. The shellack stops this form happening ensuring i can get the wooden bowl out of the mould.
  3. 20171012_134243Using the mould which took about 3 days and two attempts to make i was able to make slip casts of the bowl. I made a lot of casts which unfortunately didn’t survive. I made lots of ceramic vessels from the mould to test what thickness i wanted, or how long i need to leave to to dry. 20171208_185821.jpgI have choosen to slip cast instead of hand build the geometric bowl due to the precise angles. i did not feel like i had the tact for hand building so carefully, and slip casting takes a lot of skill and time to execute and good mould. After making the plaster mould i realise i could make a far better mould, but it did the job for such a short project.
  4. i then had to fettle the casts. This involves using scalped, metal kidney and sponge to thin and perfect the edges. this is due to handling the cast and dripping happening from the actual pour process.
  5. The next step was the bisque the clay, this is where the clay is put in to the kiln and heated so it vectrafies in to ceramic. I fired them up to 1000 degrees which is the general bisque temperature.
  6. The slip cast is made form earthen ware clay which fires to a lower temperature than stone ware or porcelain once glazed the ceramic will go to about 1100 degrees. I made 3 different glossy glazes going up to this temperature as the glossy finishes are safer to drink or use than matt.
  • The first glaze is glaze 1, which consisted of the pre made earthenware translucent glaze with 6% of black copper oxide, fired to 1100 degrees, in the test kiln. The clour is strong and pigmented, it fits well in to the potential art deco theme, especially against the bronze bowl. However it is quite patchy, which could be due to dust under the glaze or nit going higher in the bisque firing and then lower in the glaze firing. i could also soak it so when the kiln reaches a certain temperature keeping it there for a certain amount of time. but over a good colour.
  • The second glaze is just the translucent glaze, which for a more refined and luxury look would contrast well with the bronze outside bowl.
  • The third glaze is again the translucent glaze with 3.5% black copper oxide, fired in the same kiln. It created a beautiful sea green which came out smoother than the other coloured glazes but still had some texture. Making similar amendments like dust or changing the temperatures as said with the 6%copper glaze would improve the finish. But over all my favourite colour of the glazes.
  • The last earthen ware glaze used the same translucent glazes for its glossy finish but with 4% cobalt mixed in. The same issues with texture is evident. But has come out the firing with a deep royal blue colouring. it has the most even colour through the application and no evidence of slight running with the other two glazes.

Out of the glazes the sea green or glaze 3 is my preferred colour but when considering the bronze, contrast and my influences the the dark green, glaze 1 is the most suitable. or the transparent glaze on white ceramic and it just gives a mor polished look.





Ceramic and bronze Bowl

During my research two artists who collaborated on a project called “re naturing the vessel”. These artists were Julian stair an ceramicist and Simone ten Hompel a silver smith. Using their chosen mediums ceramic and metal they made a series of table wear with trays, scucers and spoons, mixing matching between the materials and colour combinations. They have from a physical stand point shown how the two material can vary yet still create a harmonious collection and how they work together as very different materials. Yet they are also showing vessels as more than a function object. A piece of table wear that can be used but admired at the same time treasured made out of interesting materials. I want to achieve a similar effect from my contrast bowl. The thought of buying a new mug is very exciting to me i get to see whats new, pick a new colour them or change the shape that im used to i can potentially buy a mug that i will love a treasure. So why not buy an object that has been hand crafted that has been engineered. instead of some cheap tat fro  Tesco. I want to be able to use an item yet still show it off and take pride in using it.

My initial research with the ideas of ceramic an bronze helped me come to a contrasting two tiered bowl made of the two materials. After researching Art Deco, intercepting planes, surface and plane i wanted to seriously push my skills as a maker. this lead to a very geometric and in regards to me a very maths heavy design. i usually stick to very natural fluid forms that i can hand make and not really plan to far ahead with.


Im am not the quickest when it comes to mathematics problem solving and i do not particularly enjoy it, however to get a crisp six sided bowl i needed to really plan, design and work out plenty of angles and problems.  my first mock up on Cad with the help of Rhys as my computer skills were a bit lacking ended with this design.

It was very far from my usual style and was very challenging for me. I found it very difficult to find suitable proportions for the bowl as i have never done any form of table wear or vessel. It did cross my mind that i may have jumped to quickly in to the deep end, but as it was the first project of my final year i wanted to start with a bang. I made many paper and cardboard maquettes and sketched a lot of mock bowls which helped but not enough to get actual measurements to make a bowl with. I tried to create another CAD file on solid works with measurement which although it took me a lot longer than a product designer i finally made. However i found it difficult transferring measurement from 2D to 3D as the angles in 2D form would change in each form due to perspective.


One of the main inspirations from my Geamtkunstwerk bowl is from Richard Serra. Serra is an American artist who works with weathered steel on a very large scale, hundred of tons across meters of space. His works embody the practice of intercepting planes and the engineering of materials. Although there are points that intercept Serra’s work has inspired me to think about angling the bowls to create a more severe interception. After a tutorial with Ingrid we discussed how to vamp up the bowl, i have pictures of Serra’s work on my wall which lead us to creating a design with tilting sides. The visible planes of the bowl to intercept.


Scan_081220173214_001.pdfowl deisgn sheet

The interceptions brings the two bowls together creating a more cohesive bowl. It now become a singular object with two components instead of two separate bowls. The angles sides also emphasise the geometric design of the bowl and gives more purpose to the hexagon shape. before i could have made any different amount of sides including spherical. To create the dichotomy of angles and materials, i wanted 3 different pieces the make the interception, meaning there are two of everything or 6 pieces to make either the bronze or ceramic bowl.





Art Deco

Art Deco was an art movement between the 1920’s and 1930’s it simultaneously celebrated tradition and modern mechanised qualities. Art Deco spanned, furnishing, pottery, architecture, glassware, prints and fashion.

” Decorative elegance and exquisite craftsmanship is displayed through the works of Clarice Cliff, Frank Lloyd Wright, Rene Lalique, Emile-Jaques Ruhlmann and Jeanne Lanvin, providing lively insight into the development of one of the world’s first truly global design movements.” (V&A, Art Deco)

Art deco is based on geometric shapes and lines, and bright colours. the added metallics of bright metals add a touch of luxury to the aesthetic. Craftsmanship especially of expensive materials like ebony and ivory add to the lux feel of Art Deco.


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V&A, Art Deco. Available at [Accessed on 11 Oct 2017]



When researching bronze especially in the domestic both bronze and brass appear as objects like cutlery place mates decorative objects. However there is a difference between the two materials.

The Metal super market an online metal shops gives definitions between, brass and bronze.

“Brass is mainly an alloy that consists of copper with zinc added. Brasses can have varying amounts of zinc or other elements added. These varying mixtures produce a wide range of properties and variation in colour. Increased amounts of zinc provide the material with improved strength and ductility. Brass can range in colour from red to yellow depending on the amount of zinc added to the alloy”  (Metal Supermarkets UK – Stainless Steel, Aluminium, Bright, Black, Engineering, Bronze, Copper, Brass, Tool, Galvanized, 2017)

“Bronze is an alloy that consists primarily of copper with the addition of other ingredients. In most cases the ingredient added is typically tin, but arsenic, phosphorus, aluminium, manganese, and silicon can also be used to produce different properties in the material. All of these ingredients produce an alloy much harder than copper alone. Bronze is characterised by its dull-gold colour. You can also tell the difference between bronze and brass because bronze will have faint rings on its surface” (Metal Supermarkets UK – Stainless Steel, Aluminium, Bright, Black, Engineering, Bronze, Copper, Brass, Tool, Galvanized, 2017)

Starting with a simple google search of ‘metal table wear’ revealed the items:

  • cutlery
  • small pots
  • plates
  • place matts
  • cooking utensils like pots and pans
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    When i searched for bronze table wear, the majority of the pictures were of cutlery with the odd plate. however by the looks of these plates a finishes they look like metal paint or glaze something that isnt a solid deposit of bronze.

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  • I don’t mind using metal glazes or lusters i think they are very beautiful and take still and knowledge to use in an effective way. From my visit to new designers m Lawsons ceramic work with the gold and silver bimorphic shapes bubbling over the side is made with some sort of luster or glaze. 20170629_112255

My next web search was just bronze objects.

  • sculptures,
  • bowls
  • vases
  • historical objects like the verdigris
  • some odd shaped thing which is described as money in the shape of the sun.

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Bronze tools:

  • hammers
  • spears
  • blades
  • knifes

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  • From one of the previous searches one of the picture with a bronze sun shaped object caught my attention. The description from the online auction website where it had previously been auctioned off, describes the collection as bronze amulte or a psedo which is money of form of the sun, along side a bronze sickle and an arrow head. It was dated back to 1100/700 B.C from Europe (Catawiki, 2017)The fact that this sun shape was actually money intrigued me and the fact ist so different from the money we have today. Unfortunately no matter how much i researched i really struggled to find anything else about this other than what was on the catawiki auction site. My next search was on bronze money as the sun coin was dated to around 1100/700 B.C (Catawiki, 2017), i wanted to explore coin shapes and also how long bronze was used as a form of currency. This online auctions claims that this objects


  • Bibliography

Metal Supermarkets UK – Stainless Steel, Aluminium, Bright, Black, Engineering, Bronze, Copper, Brass, Tool, Galvanized. (2017). Difference Between Copper, Brass and Bronze | Metal Supermarkets. [online] Available at: [Accessed 11 Oct. 2017].


Collection of bronze objects. (2017).Available at :×6-cm-bronze-sickle-18-cm-and-bronze-arrowhead-5-cm-3x [accessed 11 Oct 2017]



Surface and plane


During Our Thursday talks with Jon we went over the principles and elements of design. I found it helpful to go back to basics and discuss the basic point so design such as point line colour. I found the surface and plane particularly interesting as i am looking at making a form that intercepts planes.

” In geometry, a moving point generates a line, a moving line generates a plane, and a moving plane—a rectangular solid. Planes are ubiquitous design elements: the walls of your apartment, the painting on the wall, the windowpane, and the paper you write on. The built world is planar and geometric.”  (Elements of design, Moodle)

In context to my work a plane is a surface, i want to create two contrasting surfaces that meet and intercept each other to visually create one object.

 (Intersection curve, Wikipedia).Although Wikipedia is not a reliable source, i find it doesn’t hurt to use it to get a general ideas from the site if its difficult to find sources. i managed to find this diagram from the website about intercepting planer, or a intersection curve as wiki calls it. Here are two parallel surfaces meeting and essentially cutting through each other this is an interception.

The site tutor vista site a mathematics tutoring website gives the definition of “the intercept is said to be the interruption in the continuous process. In mathematics, the intercept is defined as the portion of a line segment which is cut off either by axis or by Y axis or by both. ” (Tutorvista)

Slope of Intercept Graph(tutor vista)

My plan for the bowl is to create a geometric bowl, working on angles within two different layers of the bowl. The use of angles and mathematics Technics should make a really interesting interception of the ceramic and metal surfaces and planes.


The description from the elements of design for surface is “Surface is one of the first characteristics of form perceived by a viewer. Texture is that aspect of a surface that we can experience tactile. Texture is contextual—i.e. smooth is smoother when contrasted with rough” (Element of design, Moodle)

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These are a few pictures form searching ‘surfaces’ in google (Surfaces, google)

I plan for the surface of my bowl to be quite important. as my words involve materiality, honest, and contrast. i do not want to hide the surface of the bowl behind any covering such as enamel or glazing that takes away from the materials potentially hidden . many glazes enhance the ceramic or ads a honest contrast to the bronze along side it.



Element of design, Moodle, available at:, 2017. [accessed on 10 Oct 2017]

Intersection curve, 2016. Available at: [Acessed on 26 Oct 2017]

Slop and intercept, Tutorvista, 2017. Available at: [Accessed on 10 Oct 2017]

Surfaces, google, 2017. Available at: [ Accessed on 10 Oct 2017]


Geometric & Biomorphic shapes

 “adjectiveAlso, geometrical
1. of or relating to geometry or to the principles of geometry.”(,2017)

5.a geometric pattern, design, etc.:

an ornate and handsome geometric.” (,2017)
“geometric shapes-are regular precise, Ex- rectangles and circles
  • straight (rectilinear)
  • curved (curvelinear)” (Slideshare, chapter 2 .p33)
We first understand geometric shapes as regular 2D shapes such as squares, circles and triangles to name a few examples. Often geometric shapes have vertices and lines connecting to making interior points or angles. precision is usually needed to create geometric shapes  or form and any irregularities can off set the desired shape.
in my sketch book i had a quick sketch of geometric shapes, i used these doodles as a ground point for my geometric designs, next to a page of biomorphic forms they help me anchor my designs to either a geometric or biomorphic form. To create these pages i used shapes from memory and a simple google search. (Geometric shapes, google images)

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1.a painted, drawn, or sculptured free form or design suggestive inshape of a living organism, especially an ameba or protozoan” (,2017)

“Organic shapes- have a natural appearance.
  • biomorphic shapes
  •  amorphous shapes” (Slideshare, chapter 2 .p33)

Biomorphic shapes are a much more irregular or fluid form, the opposite to a geometric form. These shapes are not defined by precision although may examples do not need a precise hand to create them. Thes shapes are also found in natural and can be tricky to replicate.  Biomorphic as the term is best used to describe organic forms or organisms

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Bibliography (2017). the definition of geometric. [online] Available at: [Accessed 8 Oct . 2017].
Google images. (2017). Geometric shapes [online] Available at:
Slideshare.(2009). Chapter 2. [online] Available at: