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Making Marks Series with Robin Hopper: Ceramic Surface Decoration (on 2 DVDs)


2 Universal DVDs, Six 30 minute lessons

Out of stock



A six program series dedicated to the decoration and enrichment of ceramic surfaces. The series progresses through decoration techniques for soft and leather-hard clays, to brush-work and glazing methods for bisque ware, and finally to the effects of various firing methods. A multitude of creative ideas are presented including working processes, tools, close-ups of surface details, and many examples of finished pieces.  

"As an encyclopedia of options available to potters, Making Marks is unparalleled. There are enough creative ideas here to fire a potter’s kiln for decades."  – (Video Librarian)

"[These videos] rank among the best in the recent flurry of videos which introduce the viewer to the basic techniques of potting. They are detailed, comprehensive, intelligent, high-quality productions."(Richard Aerni, Studio Potter Network)

"Robin Hopper explores the decoration and enrichment of ceramic surfaces in this excellent and stimulating series……..This series is comprehensive, thorough , and sure to inspire students with its numerous inventive and creative ideas." (Arts & Activities)

The series includes the following six programs previously released as six, 30-minute long stand-alone videos:

1) Introduction and Surface Removal Processes:  Surface removal techniques include decoration by cutting, slashing, carving, scratching, and faceting. Work with fluting, sgraffito, filigree, surface expansion, washed wax and expanded spring wire is also demonstrated.

"A well organized and skillful exposition . . . . Excellent stuff, but by far the best aspect of the series is the breadth of [Hopper’s] appreciation . . . . He succeeds in opening our doors of perception so that we become aware of the infinite variety of clay."-  (Ceramic Review UK)

2) Marks of Addition and Impression:   Techniques are presented for adding to the surface by using burlap and slip, paper and slip, sprig molds, and modeling techniques. Marking surfaces by using found objects, rolled rope, paddles, stamps, lino cuts and sticks is also shown.

"Extremely detailed . . .would make an important contribution to all but children’s collections." –  (Video Rating Guide for Libraries)

3) Liquid and Colored Clays: A variety of decoration techniques with liquid clays are presented. Drawing, combing, marbling, dotting, feathering, and mocha diffusions with slips are all shown, as are the Japanese techniques of. mishima, hakeme, and onda. Laminated clays of different colors are used to demonstrate neriage block-making, faceting, fluting and thrown effects.

"This video is well produced, with professional lighting, close-ups, and dissolves used to good effect. Hopper supplies much useful and valuable advice."- (Video Rating Guide for Libraries).

4) Pigments and Resists: Effects of different brushes and underglaze pencils and pastels are shown, along with techniques for decoration with ceramic water colors, banding, and sponge stamps. Majolica, wax, and paper resists also are featured.

"Will be enjoyed by crafts people of every level."(Booklist)

5) Glazes and Glazing:   Effects of different surfaces and firing temperatures, crystalline glazes, and various aspects of glaze development are presented and finished pieces are used to document various effects. Glaze mixing and application techniques such as dipping, brushing, spraying, trailing, pouring, applying dry materials and stamping are demonstrated. The uses of intaglio and multiple glazes are also included.

"Production values are very good. Lighting, camera angles, music, and narration all combine for a pleasant and informative experience."(Video Rating Guide for Libraries)

6) Firing and Post-Firing Effects: Various firing possibilities are demonstrated beginning with a primitive pit kiln and raku firing, oxidation firing in an electric kiln, and reduction firing using a gas kiln. Many different pieces illustrating the effects of these different firing processes are shown. Salt and soda and wood firing also are discussed using finished pieces. Techniques for working with saggers, reduced and resonate lusters are included.

"This video would be very useful in the classroom and the studio and is sure to stimulate interest in the processes shown."(Video Rating Guide for Libraries)

Please Note: There is no artwork provided by the publisher, Pottery Videos, in the DVD case for this video. If for any reason this presents a problem for you (esp. schools and public libraries) please contact us and we will have the publisher email you a jpeg. The artwork shown in the photo either comes from a scene in the DVD itself or from the artwork provided in a previous edition of the DVD.

Please do NOT purchase this DVD if not having jewel-case artwork is an issue for you.

Additional information

Weight 0.5 lbs

Pottery Videos


180 minutes