Earthenware vessels were modelled by hand until some time in the middle of the Neolithic period and, in most regions, probably for some time after that. These vessels were modelled through a coiling process, involving thick ropes of clay being rolled out and then coiled round on top of one another in order to give the vessel the desired profile; the joins of the coils were then smoothed so that no ridges remain between the original layers. The smoothed vessel was then beaten into its final shape with a paddle and anvil, that is, a support held against the inside of the vessel, while the exterior was beaten smooth. Close inspection of Yangshao earthenware shows no ridges nor paddle marks – showcasing the neat detailed work of the civilisation. The vessels were then finished by scraping and burnishing, occasionally followed by painting and further burnishing. The delicate brushstroke patterns are generally along the top two-thirds of the vessel, they typically represent wave or net designs, as most communities of the time settled near and were dependant on rivers and fish. Whilst earlier uses of ceramics in China centred on use, the Neolithic thin-walled, painted, and burnished earthenwares and vessels, have been discovered in dwelling sites as well as burial sites located along the Yellow and Yangtze river valleys, highlighting their use as ritual vessels too.