Majolica is my chosen and favorite technique to finish my creations in clay. The most common surface decoration in pottery is to use underglazes before or after firing and then finish with a clear glaze to protect the piece. With majolica, the glaze is added first and the decoration is painted on top using pigments. The colors are fused into the glaze. The technique is famous in Northern Africa, Spain, Portugal and in some Arab countries, especially used on tile for ornate architectural buildings. With Majoleeka, I give this ancient technique a contemporary twist!
I was a painter before I became a potter, so I am at ease with painting images and creating designs. Trays are one of my favorite items to make as they give me a canvas-like surface to create imagery on. Mugs are also a great surface to compose on and I like working on both surfaces.
I use a red earthenware clay body to create objects that will be my canvases. Most will be blank and full of spontaneous opportunity. Others that have added ornamentation will already have a clue to what direction my imagery will go.
I hand paint my designs, which come from many sketch books. Over time I have built up many subjects to select from. Flowers and vegetables come from my love of gardens. Cats were inspired from my furry friends, indoor and outdoor cats. I love calligraphy and so have made several items with this in mind. I select a group of pots and decide what subjects to put on them. I work in small groupings at the same time to attain similar themes.
The final glaze firing is where everything comes together. The imagery now becomes solid and a part of the pottery, the glazed and painted surface on top of the earthenware body are one. A beautiful shiny surface with colors that pop! A beautiful piece of pottery to look at, hold and use for years to come.