What is the Difference Between Pottery and Ceramics? – DiamondCore Tools
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What is the Difference Between Pottery and Ceramics?

What is the Difference Between Pottery and Ceramics?

Those interested in learning more about the pottery-making process often ask us about the difference between pottery and ceramics. Although pottery and ceramics may sound like two different things, they’re, in fact, mostly the same. 

The main difference between pottery and ceramics is that not all ceramics are made out of clay. Ceramics can also be formed from silica or glaze. Pottery, on the other hand, is only made from clay. 

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Definitions and Uses

Pottery- and ceramics-making are part of the oldest forms of art that are commonly created with clay and then dried at high temperatures. Typically, these art forms are created for decor or practical use as tableware or other vessels. 

Today, we see artists creating vases, mugs, bowls, plates, plant pots and so much more that exceeds the art we’ve seen in the past. 

Pottery

Pottery is defined as the process of creating and forming various vessels with clay. Pottery is often made by hand and can be shaped with or without a potter’s wheel. 

Typically, artists create pottery in consistent forms that are then left to dry and finally fired in a kiln.

 

 

 

 

Ceramics

Ceramics refers to various hard and brittle materials that are created as artists mold and fire their work at high temperatures. 

They are designed to be heat- and corrosion-resistant, allowing them to be used for cooking and holding liquids while also being dishwasher-safe as long as the ceramic isn’t hand-painted.

 

 

 

 

Four Main Clay Types 

Pottery and ceramics are generally created from four main types of clay: earthenware, stoneware, ball clay and porcelain. The type of ceramic that the artist creates depends on the type of clay that they choose. Choosing the right clay type will help to create the proper durability of the piece. 

  • Earthenware Clay is used for traditional terracotta pots or bricks.
  • Stoneware Clay is best for creating functional pottery for baking, cooking, and holding liquids. Stoneware is microwave- and oven-safe.
  • Ball Clay can be used for plates, vases, mugs and other similar projects.
  • Porcelain is one of the most durable and elegant clay types used for functional cooking or drinking and fine china. 

  • If you have any questions about pottery and ceramics, we’re here to help. Leave a comment or get in touch with our team on Facebook and Instagram. We can’t wait to see what you’re creating.

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