Make it Yourself
MIY CERAMICS & GLASS
OUR STORY & PHILOSOPHY
Our open studio is for makers just like you! Learn about our studio plus some history on the artforms we practice
MIY Ceramics Studio and Learning Center is an open studio. We provide open access studio to people looking for a place to practice their skills without having to set up a costly home studio. Currently, we have 25 full-time studio members. We also teach pottery, glass fusing, lampworking. painting and mosaic classes, host day of fun studio parties an team building evens. We also teach Boy Scouts pottery merit badge classes, run ceramics summer camps, slump glass bottles, offer kiln firing services, sell clay, glass supplies and tools and restore artwork, We are a unique playground for clay and glass enthusiasts, recreational potters and artists of all skill levels who come to use our studio facilities to make, learn to play with and shop for pottery, mosaic, dichroic glass jewelry, and artwork.
Open Since 2007
MIY Ceramics | Glass Fusing | Mosaic and Paint Art Studio Origins
When Fire and Mud Pottery Studio closed in 2006, all the members were distressed since this was their passion and the only open pottery studio in South Florida. After some initial crying and screaming, and a crash course on how to license a business, the members came up with a plan and opened a new studio in April 2007 in a nearby location. We have managed to successfully recreate the magic of the old studio and have added glass fusing. lampworking/flameworking, paint your own ceramics, mosaics, and glass painting. To reflect the new arts and crafts additions, our name is now MIY Ceramics and Glass Studio. By the way, MIY stands for Make It Yourself!!!! We are again having fun playing with brand new equipment and gizmos in a bigger and nicer facility. It has been one heck of a ride!
MUD & FIRE
HISTORY OF CERAMICS AND CLAY
Pottery is our oldest handicraft. In prehistoric times, most likely water was carried in woven baskets lined with river clay. After the water was poured out of the container the layer of clay dried. The loss of moisture caused the shape to shrink and separate from the sides of the basket. When the clay, now shaped like a pot, was removed and dried in the sun on hot sand, it retained the basket pattern. Early men and women then discovered that they could harden the molded pottery in hot ashes and make sturdy containers to transport and store foodstuffs. From these would have been extended the pots formed by hand and decorated with crude tools. From a very early date in history, some say at least 400 B. C., earthenware pottery was produced on a mass scale by a potter’s wheel in many parts of the world.
The Egyptians made kilns to place their clay pots in for firing. The kiln was lined with a kind of insulation brick that was made from a mixture of straw and clay which had been dried in the sun. Later, the ancient Egyptians used finer clay with high quartz content for their delicate pottery. They rubbed the pieces with a smooth stone to give the dull sheen or coated them with a fine layer of another color of clay.
Further experimentation leads the Egyptians to coat their clay objects with a bluish-green substance to make them non-porous. This was a glaze composed of quartz, soda, and a mineral containing copper which when fired covered the clay bowls and vases with a glass-like surface.
Ancient Greek vases are highly valued for form and decoration. The graceful lines a perfect balance speaks to our desire for beauty. The pottery was decorated with pictures of the daily lives of the people and stories of their gods, goddesses, and heroes. On the red-figure vases the background was painted black and the figures were left the natural red color of the clay. The color was reversed on the black-figured vases
In medieval times sand was mixed with clay to make cooking pots strong enough to be placed over an open fire. Today, for the same reason, casseroles used for baking are made from clay mixed with grog which is ground-up fired pottery. The openness of grog clay allows water to evaporate more evenly as it dries and prevents cracking and warping during the firing. Grog clay eases the problem of heat expansion which can cause large thick pieces of pottery or sculpture to blow up in the kiln.
Around the middle of the thirteenth-century German potters started to produce stoneware. This pottery was made form finer clays and fired at a higher temperature than earthenware. Stoneware was tan or gray in color, strong and naturally non-porous.
Light, transparent porcelain was first produced in China. Porcelain was made from very plastic and pure clay called kaolin mixed with feldspar. The colorful decoration of the porcelain was accomplished by firing each color individually after it was applied. These delicate china dishes and figurines were in demand all over Europe. In their efforts to unravel the secret of the composition of the Chinese porcelain, European and other Asian potters developed many variations in their glazing techniques.
Late in the sixteenth century, a trade route through Manila brought pottery from China to Acapulco to Vera Cruz, Mexico to Europe.
Monday - Thursday 10AM–9PM