Sunday, September 26, 2010

Epic saga of spiral vessel continues...

September 26, 2010: update - it's now official, this piece is taking longer to complete than any since the invention of the wheel.    Thanks to some over-zealous glazing with iron wash, on my part, and possibly some disregard for instructions I left for the kiln-loader, the glaze (iron wash over spotted chino) ran off the piece and fused with the kiln shelf (my instructions were to put the piece on a shelf-fragment coated with slip, which would have enabled any running glaze to have been peeled off, rather than chopped off, as this obviously was):   

That's a detail of the base, a big chunk of which was just discarded by the kiln operating staff because it stuck to the kiln shelf.   Here's the entire piece as it looks now:

I'm now making a "shoe" in which to insert the base, then glue to it, to salvage this guy.  Here's what the "shoe" looks like right now (just prior to bisquing - it has to be 13 percent larger than the base, due to shrinkage in drying and firing: 



Here's a little video of the the piece while it was under construction: 

video 




Aug. 11:  Below, here's a few photos of it (bad ones, sorry) after it was bisqued and then after I glazed it and put it on the shelf yesterday to be high-fired.  Fingers crossed, I hope it doesn't 1) warp or droop and 2) get stuck to the kiln shelf.  I put it on its own kiln plate in hopes that if the glaze runs and sticks, it will come off the plate more easily than it would an actual kiln shelf.  The glaze is a thin layer of spotted shino sprayed on, then covered with two thin coats of iron wash.  I can't believe I've been doing this for nearly 3 years and I still don't know/can't get a straight answer from the instructors there about when something will run badly and when it won't, and when it will warp badly.  Sorry to gripe...  Anyway, the goal is to get some kind of shiny, reddish gun-metal finish.  We'll see!  Sorry again about the bad photoshopping...


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I know what you did last... Spring

Here are two vessels I made much earlier in the year, but they got messed up in firing - the glaze sticking to the kiln shelf, so they had to be hacked out of the kiln, ruining their bases.  I've just discovered Milliput - ceramic-repair putty - and I'm working on reconstructing those bases, and they're finally at a stage that is somewhat presentable.  I was annoyed they were not perfect, emerging from the kiln, but this restoring/repairing is just another learning experience in the long road of becoming a better potter.

Here's a link >  rolf's ceramics on Flickr   < to all the pictures I took of this group (plus the "lozenge"-step vessel which I'll write about in a few days.

Hope you like!  Leave a little comment if you do!