Friday, 4 July 2014


Hello Potters and Friends,

The Warwickshire Open Studio Exhibition has come round again and, as last year, I have a joint exhibition with my daughter - jeweller Rosie Bill and painter Kathy Webster.

Turning my studio and Alan's study into a gallery always takes several days of hard dusting, window cleaning and emptying. The rest of the house acts as a warehouse for the unwanted items but, hey, it's a very enjoyable 2 weeks. 

So a couple of weeks ago I had a kiln opening and here is a close look at a few of the contents.

Continuing the naked clay theme that I talked about in the previous post, I enjoyed experimenting with red iron oxide.

After a bisque firing I painted on a wash of red iron, then removed most of it with a damp sponge. Then when it was bone dry, I rubbed it carefully with sandpaper to bring back some of the white clay. I used a brush-on glaze to confine the pool of glaze to the centre. 

The edge was imprinted with various objects including a lump of lava from Lanzarote and red Monopoly houses.

The ginger jars have attracted a good deal of attention. The insect decoration was painted with very thick iron oxide.

And here's a wonderfully happy accident.......

I brushed on white slip at leather hard stage, then burnished it with the back of a spoon until I achieved a good shine. Then I painted my fern on top with thick red iron oxide. 
It came out of the bisque kiln as I imagined. I glazed the inside and fired it to cone 6 (approximately 1230ÂșC) and I had, quite by chance created this crackle effect.

I've no idea why this happened. Something shrank, but was it the slip or the oxide? It's a mystery to me, but I will certainly be doing it again. I love it.

But I haven't abandoned glazes altogether. These Charwan teacups present quite a splash.

Thrown stoneware with a handful of porcelain dragged around the middle (previous post shows me making a Yunomi cup in the same way).

Charwan and Yunomi teacups are made without handles so that the temperature of the tea can be felt when picked up. If the cup is too hot to hold then it's too hot to drink and therefore bad for the digestion. 

And on this ginger jar is a mixture of glaze and a highly flecked clay surface.

But what caused the biggest celebration in our household this week is the birth of another grand-daughter. Welcome to the family, Lana Quinn Kennedy.