Tuesday, 20 March 2012

14. Fresh From the Oven.

Hello Potters and Friends,

In my last post I showed you a tall vase made by joining two cylinder shapes together. Well, I'm pleased to say that it survived the glaze firing and here is the result.

If you squint very hard you can just see that there is a very nice ochre band where the two glazes meet. Here's a jug I glazed in the same way. It's much clearer here.

I'd done a small test pot first, of course, but this yellow band came as a complete surprise. The brown glaze is Tenmoku and I overlapped it with a satin white. Neither glazes run so I guessed that together they would stay stable, but I didn't know what the reaction would be. And this is going to be really useful on other work. 
Take this plate for instance.

This is wax resist brushwork under the Tenmoku glaze.

The wax has repelled the glaze, so what you see is the bare clay beneath. This is absolutely fine, but the glaze sits slightly higher than the pattern, so the plate  isn't smooth. But I could create a similar effect using the white satin glaze thrown or poured in a hap-hazard way and have a lovely smooth, ochre pattern.

Now, during February here in England we have seen some dark, grey days. And maybe because of this I started painting my pots in some very bright underglazes. 

Small porcelain dishes.

Egg cups and small mugs.

I love thinking up the ideas and painting away in my workshop while listening to BBC radio 4, but if I'm really honest, opening up the kiln to discover a perfect yellowy/ochre band when I least expected it, gives me a much bigger thrill.
So, now that spring has arrived with the daffodils and tulips bobbing about I left the cheery bright colours and I went straight back to some thing a little more primitive. 

I threw this pot as usual but before lifting it from the wheel I squirted it with liquid slurry from my slop bucket and, with the wheel slowly turning, I ran my fingers though it.

This was my squirter - a tomato ketchup plastic bottle - 3 for £1 from the £1 shop. The raised pattern should hold a coloured glaze really well. In fact, there's no reason why you couldn't squirt porcelain slip onto the stoneware or even a clay that's been coloured with an oxide. I'll definitely be giving that a whirl. 
 I look forward to showing you the finished results.....I can't wait for the thrill of opening up that kiln!!

Happy potting Folks.