It’s been a few months since I completed the five weeks MATS A course, and I’ve been meaning to show you my ceramic plate designs. One of the assignments was for “Home Decór”, and during this, we were asked to produce a collection of ceramic plates based on the gorgeous, Staffordshire Pottery.
I wasn’t previously aware of just how wonderful Staffordshire Pottery is, until I saw the instantly recognisable Staffordshire Spaniel dog ornaments. They are so delightful aren’t they? I just love all of the different kinds of characters within the Staffordshire range. They’re so quirky and are rather fun to draw too! You can see a selection that I’ve collated on Pinterest; I thought it would be useful to put together a Pinterest board, as part of my initial research for the assignment.
From my research of the many types of Staffordshire Pottery, I drew ones that I found the most interesting. Some of the characters had such sweet faces and I liked the overall shapes of some of the ornaments too.
Ceramic plate designs
Here is a pencil and ink observational drawing. Sometimes I get a feel for the object that I’m drawing, just using lines and minimal shading.
I first drew this as line-art, and then added watercolour to it. Whilst producing drawings, I enjoy having a bit of fun, by experimenting with the composition and with the thickness of lines.
As I draw, I tend to move onto colour, and draw using a paint brush. Here, I was deciding whether or not to incorporate flowers within my Staffordshire characters.
Further drawings using mainly pencil, ink, watercolour and gouache.
This is for a Staffordshire vase. I drew the base with pencil and the flowers & leaves with gouache.
I love this drawing. The calf looks so cute standing next to its protective mother.
After I’ve collated enough research and drawing material, I begin thinking about my plate designs. For this, I researched designs which are currently on the market. Some of my favourite are on Anthropologie. I just love the painted designs and colours. Then, I put together some designs ideas. You’ll see how I’ve progressed from my first idea to my final ceramic plate designs.
This was my first idea, but I wasn’t happy with the choice of colours. I wanted my designs to have a traditional feel, with a contemporary twist. The background colour just wasn’t working for me. For my next idea, I tried a fresher feel.
This is the second idea. The colours are much brighter and fresher, and the layout is more contemporary. However, this design still feels minimal and naked. I felt it was lacking something to pull the icons together, however, I think this design would look great as a side plate.
To help move my designs to the next level, I decided to look for inspiration and came across the works by Anne Smith. Her work has a both a traditional and contemporary feel. I love how she combines all of my favourite design elements too; objects (shapes), contrasting colours, line, texture and text & figures. Her abstract art is simply beautiful!
Final ceramic plate designs ‘Staffordshire’
Overall, with the time we had to create our plate collections, I’m happy with my final designs. At some point in the near future, I want to re-visit this assignment and develop this collection further. I’d like to simplify them, add more bold colours and enlarge the central images. I hope you like them!
Emma Jayne x