The idea for this palette came from an artist named Mona who asked me to make her a white dragonfly tile because she thought it would work well as a small palette. She was right – it made a really good mini palette because of the negative space surrounding the insect.
I’ve been wanting to design another palette so I sketched some ideas incorporating a pattern of dragonflies. Since it is a relatively large piece, I’ve been experimenting with different types of clay in an effort to minimize the warping often associated with larger tiles. I love the white color of porcelain clay for making palettes because I think it provides a great surface for mixing colors, but I decided to try a couple of stoneware clay bodies too. I was taught that stoneware, especially with sand and grog, is less inclined to warp than porcelain. Surprisingly, I did encounter some warping with one of the stoneware clays as it dried. Fortunately, the palette flattened out during the glaze firing.
I glazed the porcelain palettes with clear glaze and the stoneware palettes with white glaze. The white stoneware palettes provide a white surface for mixing colors but they have a more rustic appearance. The darker clay peaks through the white glaze and accentuates the carved details.