Pottery Gallery



Bee Balm Handiwork has multiple pottery lines. Each has it's own purpose, building technique and finishing process.

  • Sculpture : Hand-built 3D Artwork

  • Functional : Usable pieces that are dishwasher safe and food safe.

  • Raku : Specially fired Artwork finished in reduction environment.


  • Sculpture

    Loon

    The Sculpture line includes pieces are hand-built from clay, and shaped to be favorite animals, garden accents or other whimsical targets. Theresa's sculpture pieces are noted for the realistic eyes, strong poses and ability to bring a smile to the viewer. These pieces can be placed outdoors, but it is recommended that you bring them in over a cold winter to protect them.
    Click here for more Sculpture.

    Functional

    Functional Pottery

    These pieces are either formed from a clay slab or wheel thrown from a ball of clay, and shaped and glazed to fit a use or purpose. These pieces are food safe, dishwasher safe and can be gently heated in a microwave or oven that starts cool. Theresa uses many glaze colors and types to bring depth and intrigue to daily items. Any gathering or meal is improved when studio made bowls, vases, serving dishes or utensils are a part of the event!
    Click here for more Functional pieces.

    Raku

    Raku Bowl

    Raku pieces go through a special finish firing process and reduction chamber with flame being a key component of their signature looks. No two pieces are the same within this category as the flames hit each piece differently. These pieces are decorative only. This piece is not food safe nor suitable for water storage as it is porous and should be kept indoors. Avoid direct sunlight.
    Click here for more Raku Artwork.



    Bee Balm Handiwork Potter Theresa Hendrickson works with raw clay, which she shapes by hand or on the wheel. Speckled Buff stoneware is a favorite for sculpture, while B-Mix is preferred for much of the functional pieces. Raku pieces need to be strong to survive, so she uses either Raku clay or stoneware with grog for this. Once dried and trimmed, each piece is bisque fired to around 1900 degrees farenheit. Once it has cooled from this firing, it can be glazed.
    Theresa uses a variety of glazes and underglazes. Some are commercial glazes from Mayco, Amaco, Spectrum or Potters Choice. Others are hand mixed from the basic minerals, metals or clays. The glaze selected will match the firing method and are labeled on this site and within our social media posts as Bee Balm Handiwork. Our glaze recipes come from glazy.org, Mesa Arts Center or other sources. Once the piece is fully glazed and the glaze has dried, the piece goes into the kiln for glaze firing.

    She has access to multiple kilns for the glaze firing and can use different firing techniques. One is an electric kiln that can be precisely controlled. Her kiln has a firing ventilation system that works to keep oxygen available throughout the firing process. This type of firing is referred to as oxidation firing. The other kiln is a gas kiln. With the gas kiln, the temperature is controlled as the piece is heated to around 1900 degrees farenheit, but then the piece is pulled red-hot from the kiln and put into a reduction chamber where the glaze is finished in a reduction environment, without oxygen.