You learn a lot about your own work from watching a skilled Photographer taking pictures of it. You get a more objective view. The lights are certainly a merciless test of your planes and edges. Stephen Foote’s top quality lenses will pick up every flaw.
I went over the whole piece with fine portrait tools and his perfect pictures reward that. I’m very inspired by the excellent craftsmanship of stone or glass artists like Sally Fawkes (http://www.sallyfawkes.com ) her process is incredibly harsh and difficult yet she doesn’t back off until her stunning sculptures are flawless. Clay is way easier but avoiding marks when you are handling the piece is a constant battle
After a spell of controlled drying it’s time cut the sections. Luckily I have a fantastic Assistant, Michael Preece. I spent a lot of time planning the cuts; we have opted for large sections and I needed to ensure they would fit in the kiln and be handleable. Mike used a variety of tools to make the cuts and he and my son Daniel lifted the sections to thick memory foam where they will stay for at least a month.
Working in clay you always have an eye on the Drying and Firing -Plan; accommodating these long drying periods where the atmosphere needs to be controlled and having the right sized pieces ready to pack nice full kilns that will distribute the heat evenly.
I went round all the edges of the cuts and tidied them and repaired any dings. I will cover the sections with sheets to ward off drafts and turn them regularly. Most cracks form at this stage although they may not show up until after the Firing.