Scraffito artist I am not!

I thought I would try applying a scraffito surface to some small pots. I quickly learnt that I’m no scraffito artist. My pathetic attempts at scraffito with the blue and green pots are below. I didn’t really enjoy ‘scratching’ into the clay surface. With the green pot I was trying to scratch out an outline of a scene and got so frustrated with it that I gave up and just ended up scratching the whole pot with short straight lines in different directions. I suppose it would help if I did more research and learnt how to do it properly, but I’m too impatient for that!

Pathetic attempts of scraffito by Row

Pathetic attempts of scraffito by Row

Below is a coil pot with a scraffito surface by Nola from Brookvale Ceramics. She has allowed me to share this photo.

Coil pot with scraffito surface by Nola

Coil pot with scraffito surface by Nola from Brookvale Ceramics

Below is another Monday night student at Brookvale Ceramics doing some ‘scratching’, who has also allowed me to share this photo.

Another example of scraffito at Brookvale Ceramics.

Another example of scraffito at Brookvale Ceramics.

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12 thoughts on “Scraffito artist I am not!

  1. Your black one is fine…. you need a sgraffito carving tool to do better == that is why the green one isn’t as good… needed a wider carving.

    Keep trying. I use occasionally and like the effect. Also wish I was better.

  2. Rachel is right that it’s worth trying different tools. I really like both your results. It might be worth doing a few test tiles to research different kinds of mark making, then it doesn’t matter if they’re not all good. I find the key to good sgraffito is timing. If the slip is too dry it chips reducing the quality of your line. If it is too wet when you scratch it creates raised edges which aren’t good either. I leave my pots for a day after slipping (sometimes more or less depending on weather) before I scratch into them. There’s a lovely book… Techniques Using Slip by John Mathieson which has loads of ideas.

  3. Yours are not bad! It sounds like we share the impatience trait LOL! I’d like to try it, too, and it’s good to read that others say it’s a matter of practice and a tool that you like.

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