Comic Strip Vase

Designer: Kailtyn Miller



  1. Roll out a small slab that is about ¼ inch thick.
  2. Cut a round base out from the slab by tracing a circular item of the desired size.
  3. Begin building coil pot by rolling out coils from pieces of clay.
  4. Attach around the rim of the base using a slip & scoring technique.
  5. Once coils are attached, smooth over texture with your finger to straighten the connection and create a smooth surface.
  6. Continue to build up vase, curving slightly outward or inward to achieve desired shape.
  7. Once vase is built, smooth out outer texture by using a serrated rib on the outside of the pot and then going over it with a smooth metal rib to re-distribute the clay into a smooth surface finish.

  8. Allow pot to dry slowly, once fully dry bisque fire to Cone 04.

Planning Your Comic Strip:

  1. While waiting for vase to be bisque fired take the time to plan out your comic strip by considering the following:
    • What story would I like to tell on my vase?
    • How can I depict this story with only imagery and symbols (no text)?
    • Who are my characters?
    • How many panels will I need to tell my story? (recommended 3 or 4)
    • Make a sketch of your comic strip to base your final draft off of.

 Comic Design:

  1. Once vase is out of the bisque kiln, use a string to measure around the section of the vase the comic strip will go. Cut out pieces of paper of equal sizes to represent your comic strip panels.
  2. Draw out your final draft comic strip onto these panels.
  3. Trace panels onto tissue paper, indicating size of each panel by tracing full shape.
  4. Put materials aside to be used in decoration.
  5. Wipe bisque with a damp sponge to remove any dust.
  6. Using a soft fan brush, apply 3 coats of Apple Green (UG-68) to your vase, allowing underglaze to dry in between coats.
  7. Coat inside of vase with brush if you can reach inside. If you cannot reach inside- thin underglaze to a heavy cream consistency with a little bit of water and pour into the vase, shake around and pour out.
  8. Start by applying a thin coat of Leaf Green (the darkest green) to the bottom 1/3 to 1/2 of the vase.
  9. Apply a thin coat of Apple Green (the lightest green) to the top 1/3 to . of your vase.
  10. Apply a thin coat of Spring Green (the medium green) in the middle of the two other greens.
  11. While underglaze is wet, work quickly switching between color applying thin layers of glaze to blend. Allow underglaze to dry overnight.
  12. Allow Apple Green to dry overnight.
  13. Apply color bland over base coat using soft bristled brush(s) and UG-68 Apple Green, UG-22 Spring Green, UG-21 Leaf Green.
  14. It is the easiest to apply a color blend if you have a brush for each color- if you do not have enough brushes- clean your brush off well when alternating.


  1. Using masking tape, lightly tape panels in place on vase lining up the tops of the panels.
  2. Holding tissue paper in place, trace drawn lines with magic marker to transfer image to pot.
  3. Once all lines have been traced, remove tissue paper from pot revealing comic panels.
  4. Using a small brush first, establish the borders of each frame- edges may need to be altered slightly to accommodate the gradual angle of the vase.
  5. With various sizes of soft bristled detail brushes, apply Jet Black (UG-50) to one section of your design at a time.
  6. Give the underglaze a moment to set (count to 5) and then while the black is still wet, go in with your sgraffito tool to create the lines in your drawing.
  7. If you pull away too much you can re-apply the black.
  8. Be sure to clean off the end of your tool while using it so that you create clean sgraffito marks.
  9. Continue using this wet sgraffito technique to realize the designs in each of your comic panels.
  10. (Optional) to create a decorative boarder using this same technique surrounding the comic panels or at the top or bottom of your vase.
  11. Allow underglaze to dry fully overnight.
  12. If no clear glaze is desired- fire vase to cone 06 for a full matte finish.

Clear Glaze

  1. For a gloss finish, add 2 coats of S2101 Crystal Clear Brushing to your pot using a soft bristled brush.
  2. Thin the Crystal Clear Brushing glaze with a little bit of water to a heavy cream constancy and pour glaze into inside of your pot.
  3. Swirl around and dump extra out- coating the whole inside.
  4. Allow glaze to dry fully.
  5. If you have glazed the bottom of your vase be sure to use stilts when firing to Cone 06.



  • Low fire white clay


  • UG-68 Apple Green
  • UG-22 Spring Green
  • UG-21 Leaf Green
  • UG-50 Jet Black
  • S2101 Crystal Clear Brushing

Decorating Accessories

  • Needle tool
  • Serrated rib
  • Metal rib
  • Water
  • Sponge
  • Brushes for glazing
  • Sgraffito tool(s)
  • Pencil
  • Tissue paper
  • Magic Marker
  • Masking tape
  • String
  • Slab roller or Rolling pin
  • Patterns