Sunday, November 17, 2013

Studio day

Got the tiny test kiln loaded last night and turned on first thing this morning. Yesterday I got about a half a day of good studio time which is about par for me these days, for what I consider to be a good, retirement, studio day.

One of the items in this firing is a small slab with few black slip tests, with two clear and three transparent, honey glazes over. Most of my time yesterday was spent mixing, sieving and applying those glazes and cleaning up. I also have a small group of pots that I washed yesterday and was hoping to glaze today. That glaze is too powdery and needs some help. I tried to glaze a couple of things but wasn't happy with how the glaze was behaving, so I mixed up some CMC and got that strained and added to the glaze and re-strained the glaze. All these little jobs certainly eat up studio time.

My current frit version of the clear I originally tested is really tricky. It has to be applied very thinly otherwise it can leave a white shadow. Fortunately, I only made a small batch of it, so I'm thinking at this point that I may have go back to the Gerstley Borate version which seems to be much less finicky about thickness; but first I'm going to wait a couple of days until I make some other tests with various specific gravity batches of this fritted version. If I'm not satisfied, then I'll go back to the original, non fritted version of this clear glaze. 

Tomorrow I'll bisque those few un-slipped test tiles and the following day, dip them in a couple of different thickness of that glaze. This  means putting off glazing this group of pots, but there are other things on my "to do" list, like clearing the entire slab roller and rolling out some slabs that I can use for the templates I made earlier this week.  Some of these templates will just be used to outline what will be small trays or dishes and others will be use to make bisqued pieces that can be used to impress dishes and trays. I've done that process using some antique wooden tools that were traditionally used in India to print fabrics. I also have some other wooden forms made to be used as drape molds or to depress a slab, set on a thick piece of upholstery sponge. Here are a couple of samples using that technique.


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