Mishima, misleadingly named for a Japanese city from which it did not originate, is a method of inlaying slip, engobe, or soft contrasting clay into carved or impressed texture. As I'm still having fun with my homemade texture roller, I decided to try some mishima decorating with my Monday-funday Handbuilding class. It worked so well I reprised the demo for the Tuesday Afternoon Delights and the Tuesday Awesomeness gang.
It was a sort of two-fold demo: I started by making an ad hoc mold
from a rubbermaid bin and an old sheet. This is great if you want to
build a larger platter or shallow bowl than you have a mold for; any
container can become a sling mold. I just lay the sheet over the top,
then tie a rope or bungee cords around the bin to hold it in place.The
device looks a bit like a bassinet, when the sheet is secured in place.
You can adjust the curve to be deeper or more shallow.
I rolled out a relatively thick slab - 1/4 inch or thereabouts. I then used the handy-dandy hot-glue texture roller that
I made a couple of days ago in my home studio to impress a texture,
before laying the slab in the mold. I trimmed the edges, and then
lightly paddled the edges to compress.
I left it alone for a couple hours, hoping it would firm up some, but
it really didn't; it was raining outside and quite cool in the studio,
and of course the bin was plastic. I decided to go ahead with the
mishima so the class could see the technique, even if it was less than
ideal; but actually it worked just fine even on wet clay.
I spread thick slip from the sides of the bucket over the surface of the
platter, then used a rubber rib to remove most of the slip, leaving
behind whatever had sunk into the texture.
After letting the piece dry for a few more hours, I added a rim, made of flattened and stretched coils.
Once it was leatherhard enough to move without distortion, I threw a
foot - basically just a cylinder with no bottom, which I altered to be a
loose rectangle - and attached it by laying the platter on top of it,
while the foot ring was still quite wet.
I ended up altering the foot much more than it appears at the top of
this post, because the foot seemed so...static - in contrast to the
loose, dynamic rim. (This is a constant issue when combining thrown and
This piece will not be dry enough for the
next bisque, but will make it into the one after that; I expect it to be
finished around the end of this month.If it comes out especially well, I'll list it in the Pottery Shop!