Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Some new old finished pieces

You might have spotted them already in some of the harvesting pictures I took over summer.

This is a blue version of my lava dish and I just love it.

This piece was a test and the first one that was fired three times. And look how bright the glass colours turned out! Glass beads don't like when it's too hot in the kiln.

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Kiln Accidents

Back to blogging! All my energy had been absorbed by other things, so I neglected my little crafting journal. My pottery was ill-fated lately and involved in some kiln accidents.

The glaze turned out very good...

One of my pierced bowls had been glazed finally. I thought I give the mixed glaze a try. Due to its mixed nature it has a slightly different hue of colour all the time. It has been unusually dark for weeks and months, a bit too dark for my purpose, but I ran out of patience to wait for a new mix. (Two other bowls are still waiting.) The glaze looks really fabulous on the bowl I think, but the bowl was damaged in the kiln. One of the shelves plunged down on it during the firing, leaving parts of the rim chipped and the rest sticking to the underside of the shelf, so it had to be removed quite forcefully.

...but the rim of the bowl was damaged like this all around

Another batch of my stuff was in a kiln that was scheduled for a bisque firing, but was accidentally programmed for a glaze firing, which is almost 200°C hotter. After a bisque firing the pieces are porous enough that they can still absorb water, a quality that is important for the application of glazes. After a glaze firing the clay is water tight even without a glaze. This makes glazing after such a firing quite impossible. So my potter lost a complete kiln load of hard work.

The misfired pottery before the second firing

My pieces were mainly meant to be painted with oxides but this is no fun either when the stuff just won't adhere properly. They turned out quite okay under these circumstances but not as good as I wanted them to be. Also the insides of the pots have been left unglazed, although I wanted to try glazing nevertheless, but it was forgotten. So I'm very disappointed lately. I try to do my pieces in the best quality I'm capable of and I try to get better all the time. But big parts of the process are out of my control and sometimes this freaks me out. I even wish these have been my faults and not someone else's, so I knew what to make better the next time. I wish I had a kiln and could make my own mistakes!