I think my favorite part of the recent Art of the Peace Symposium was the session with Australian potter Greg Crowe. I know nothing about pottery and found his description of the salt-glaze technique, explanation of kiln processes and his journey of discovery in his art to be absolutely fascinating.
It was funny because pottery, aside from being an artistic discipline, would seem to otherwise have no connection with watercolor. But despite the differences, I was inspired and motivated by this glimpse into another artist’s life and work, and just wanted to rush home and paint already!
I also gained an appreciation for salt-glazed pottery that I didn’t have before the technique was explained to me – I have always gravitated toward a more polished, finished style. But the texture of salt-glazed pottery is incredible. Crowe had some macro photographs showing detail of the crackled glaze on some pieces, and the photographs were art in themselves! Salt-glazing also shares with watercolor the idea of the “happy accident” – allowing the medium to control the outcome to some extent.
I love texture in art, which is odd because in watercolor the texture is an illusion – created through brushwork and the way the paint is treated.