Thursday, October 29, 2009

The New Class

Yes, I've been missing for a while but with nothing to show -- there's really not a lot of telling to do. LOL. In any case, the new pottery class started on September 19 and I've been busy but I am also more selective now with the pieces I choose to keep. There's only so much storage space available. I've also started numbering my pieces -- yes, yes, I know -- TYPE A. But after a while, a bowl is a bowl is a bowl and I can't duplicate a glaze combination if I can't find the combination in my notebook for it so it I thought it would be easier to just number the pieces. So far, it's working out quite well. In any case, here are the first batch that came out of the glaze kiln:

This piece is a mug measing about 3.25 inches tall and about 3 inches wide. I dipped the whole piece in Josh Green and then Matt White on a bias. Well, the Josh Green turned sort of brown and the Matt White turned sort of purple. Don't know what is going on but maybe will try to duplicate just to see if it is a fluke.

A cyclinder that I tried to embellish by giving it a belly but I didn't like the way it looked so I decided to cut the heck out if it. Cut the top so that it now has a swooping slope and then cut out part of the body to make it more like a candle holder. The "webbing" looked kinda thick when I was done but it shrank during firing so they appear much more delicate now. Dipped the bottom in Waxy White, the top in Temoku (always thought that Temoku is actually Tenmoku 天目 -- confirmed it with a Japanese school mate) and just the rim in Yellow Salt.

Some time in the future, I am actually going to make a piece and cut it all the way down to the bottom.

Another mug -- this one is about 3.75 inches tall and about 3 inches wide. Notice the body? I was going to do the same thing with the above candle holder but it turned out better on the mug. In any case, this one was dipped in Waxy White and I attempted to brush Lavendar into the grooves but it ran during firing. I didn't mind too much -- I've always loved the drip pattern. Very natural and you can't really duplicate it -- which makes each piece one of a kind.

I was running out of idea of what to do with this piece (3 x 3 inches) so I thought I would do something simple. It happens when you glaze 7 pieces at the same time. So, I decide to try a glaze that I've never used before. I glazed the whole piece in Luster Shino and then put a bunch of X's and O's on the surface in Aviva Blue. Turned out that I really liked the piece -- the Luster Shino actually has a crackle effect -- something that I've been trying to do with Celadon. Yea! You can sort of see it in the picture but you might have to click on it to enlarge it.

This next one is more like a tea cup then a mug as it is smaller (3 inches tall and about 4 inches wide). This piece is done in my favorite combination -- Temoku and Yellow Salt. Instead of dipping or brushing though, I had the two glazes sponged on. The effect is quite interesting -- there are some places that are shiny and other places that are more matt. I really can't go wrong with the combination -- whether dipped, brushed or sponged. There's also the signature drippage that is classic Temoku/Yellow Salt.

This piece is a cyclinder with 2 handles added. When the piece was still wet, I painted on three bands of Aqua slip. After the piece was fired, I applied wax to the top and bottom band in a sort of modified grecian key symbol. Then I brushed on Waxy White and Antique White in alternating vertical strips on the outside. The inside is just Antique White. I kinda like it -- do you?

The final piece -- another cyclinder with handles. I think you're starting to see a theme by now -- HANDLES -- yes, we just learnt to pull handles. LOL. Anyways -- I call this piece my Fire and Ice piece. This piece took a while to finish. I had to tape the piece in tape and then cut out the flame pattern with an Exacto knife (while trying not to cut myself). Once that was done, I dipped the bottom portion in Iron Red and waited for the glaze to dry. After the glaze dried, I applied a layer of wax to resist the upper glaze color. Once the wax was dry, I took off the tape and painted the top with Josh Blue and then the rim in Waxy White to give a sort of ice/snow effect. Took a really long time but I think it is worth it. I call this piece Fire and Ice -- sort of obvious, don't you think?

That covers the glazing portion of this post. Hopefully next week I'll be able to show you some of the bowls, plates and jugs that I've made.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Much Delay

Sorry I haven't posted anything in a while -- the kiln schedule is sort of crazy at the studio. There's been a couple of missed firing because there wasn't enough pieces to fire. Anyway, everyone is producing like crazy now so hopefully things will even out a little. I just glazed 7 pieces yesterday, five pieces should be coming out of the bisque kiln today and I have three pieces sitting on the shelf waiting to be bisque fired.

Anyway, the two pieces below are the final of the final from the last term. One is a Jeff Campana inspired piece where I incised (Jeff actually cuts through his pieces) the exterior when the piece was leather hard and then I glazed the piece in Aviva Blue and Josh Blue. I would say it is probably one of my favorite piece.

This last piece is a plate that was thrown on the wheel and then I glazed the outside in Matt Black and the inside with Red Iron and a drizzle of Aviva Blue around the edge.

Ok --that's it then -- no more stuff from the last class. The next time it will be things from the new class and hopefully, you'll see an improvement in the pieces that I make.