"Exactly what I was looking for with great communication, fast shipping and absolutely beautiful craftsmanship. Cannot recommend this shop enough!"
"BEST. MUG. EVER."
"I love this mug so much!! It has a very comfortable handle and it's clear this was made with care. The size is perfect for my morning coffee and it brings joy to my morning! This mug is worth every penny, will be looking to add to my new collection in the future."
I MAKE WHEEL THROWN POTTERY THAT IS CREATED WITH CARE, AND MEANT TO BE USED.
Keith Hershberger is a potter living outside Philadelphia, PA who has been making a living working in clay for 25 years. A dino nut as a child, he could name every dinosaur discovered by the time he was four, and he spent countless hours drawing them. Now, with his line of dinosaur pottery, he found a way to bring some of that carefree childhood joy into his ceramic work. You can find his work in shops and galleries across the US, and at occasional shows throughout the east coast and midwest. His work has been published in 500 Prints on Clay and in Graphic Clay by Jason Burnett. He graduated from Goshen College with a B.A. in Fine Art with a focus on ceramics.
The first step in making my work is to cut up the clay and weigh it so all the pieces of clay are the correct weight for the shape I’ll be making. I then wedge the clay to make it consistent and work out any air bubbles.
Most of my work is made on the potter’s wheel. After it comes off the wheel, the clay is very soft, and needs to dry out until it is firm enough to continue to work with it.
Once the clay has dried to the point where it can't be bent, but can still be dented with a fingernail (a stage called leather hard), I turn my bowls and plates over and trim away the extra clay to create a nice foot.
To make my handles, I attach a piece of soft clay to the leather-hard mug, pull it to stretch it out into shape, then attach it to the bottom of the mug. It takes me longer to use this method, but allows me to make a comfortable handle that is thin in the middle and thicker at the top and bottom attachment points.
After the work dries completely, I load it into the kiln for the first firing to over 1700F. This makes the work less fragile for glazing, allows for consistent glaze thickness, and removes all water down to the molecular level so they can never be turned back into workable clay.
Glaze is essentially a layer of glass. I formulate, test, and mix my own glazes using water and dry raw materials. I dip the bisqued pieces in my glaze and load them in the kiln for the second firing, which goes to 2170F in order for the glaze to melt properly.
I create my images through a combination of drawing by hand, found imagery, and digital editing in Photoshop and Illustrator. I also take photos of textures I find interesting and layer them into my images.
I print my own decals, and after the glaze firing, I apply them to the finished surface and put them back in the kiln for a third firing. The decal paper burns away, but the iron oxide in the black ink sets into the glaze and transfers the image.
On some pieces, I do a final fourth firing with custom 20k gold decals