What is fine pottery?
There are many key features found in fine pottery. Some technical features include a consistent wall thickness and perhaps a well define "foot" on which the piece stands. The creation should have good balance in weight as well as design demonstrating a shape that the eye finds pleasing. The artist's mark and/or signature will be subtly evident and the glaze will secured well to the clay without uncontrolled flaws.
What is hand thrown pottery?
Hand thrown pottery is an artisan craft of forming clay with the use of centrifugal force on a piece of equipment called a wheel. The wheel can be motorizes or "kick" driven. The clay is made into a ball by the potter, slapped onto the wheel, and molded with wet hands while it spins. It takes great skill to "center" this clay so it spins uniformly. The potter shapes this spinning clay into cups or vases and other shapes that he chooses. Because each piece is humanly crafted separately, they each have uniqueness unto their own.
What is porcelain?
As long ago as 600 A.D. the Chinese stumbled upon the creation of porcelain. The earliest porcelain was made of kaolin; a type of white clay, and pegmatite; a type of granite. Earthly forces pulverized these ancient rocks millennia ago to what we commonly refer to a clay. According to Chinese lore, kaolin was first mined in a locality known as Kao-ling--hence its name. The firing process determines whether these "clays" become porcelain or fine china. The hottest firing temperatures result in porcelain, while a bit lower temperatures create fine china.
What is a crystalline glaze?
Crystalline glazes are those that sparkle and shimmer with zinc silicate crystal crystals that can resemble needle shapes to flower petals. Under very high temperatures, six to ten layers of glaze will become a molten layer deep enough to allow zinc and silica molecules to move and flow. If they attach to a nucleation point, they may begin to grow in rings that resemble the growth rings of a tree. This extremely hot layer of molten glaze wants to slide off the pottery as the growth takes place so the potter must determine when to "crash-cool" the kiln to "freeze" the crystals in place. Only nature determines the numbers and locations of these little gems.