The decorated ware here at McCanless Pottery is all free-hand painted using Chinese calligraphy brushes. The colorants used are various metallic carbonates and oxides such as iron, copper, cobalt, and chrome, as well as others. These metallic pigments are brushed onto a white base glaze which covers the entire pot. As the decorated piece is being fired in the kiln, the metallic pigments melt into the white base glaze setting the pigments permanently as part of the glaze.
Will McCanless takes his design cues from his travels as well as many books relating to decorated ceramics from around the world and throughout history. Through these influences, Will creates his own designs which are an eclectic combination of ceramic traditions such as Italian Renaissance maiolica, French faience, Delft, Persian lusterware, Iznick tile, and pottery from the various Chinese dynasties. These influences provide an infinite palette of design ideas for ware at McCanless Pottery.