Thursday, June 30, 2011

This is my latest, and best, barrel fired pot to date. I fired it while working with some kids at Camp Asbury. I usually use primarily salt and miracle grow in newspaper saggars, but this time I used some commercial fertilizer pellets that they had on hand at the camp. I'm really pleased with the results. The pot is now in the student/faculty show at Valley Art Center.

I had some crackling and peeling of the terra sigillata- so I intend to change my recipe and try applying it thinner. Also, there is a bit of salt scumming on the surface of the pot. Too much salt?
The color, though, is right where I want to be.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Barrel Firing Again..

This is one of the pots I fired last time in the barrel. Lots of smoking because I kept the fire covered with a grill cover- not alot of color because I skimped on salt and miracle grow- I didn't see any real effects from the corn husks and so I didn't go through the drying and brining this time..

Here is a pot from this firing- colorwise, my favorite. I only bisqued these pots to ^019- they were very soft and brittle- I will go higher next time with the bisque. Also, the terra sig crackled and peeled in some places, and this pot spalled. I used alot more miracle grow, table salt, and aquarium salt in the newspaper saggars with pine needles and tiger grass. I will apply the terra sig more thinly next time- and the spalling???? The only thing I can think of is that the aquarium salt was kind of wet when I put it in the saggars, maybe the pots absorbed enough of the moisture to develop this problem.

This pot ended up with a chipped rim and crackled sig- a little spalling, but much more color than my first barrel firing- I fired this time without covering the barrel at all, so I believe there is alot less black because of it. I did have to use a leaf blower to get the shavings/horse bedding to light- I may loosen things up a little bit with more straw next time. Bulk of the firing took about 5-6 hours.

This pot is from the first firing also- lots of smoky black, enhanced by furniture paste wax. I also tried Rain-X car wax- it polished well, but the stuff dries blue, so if there are crevices you can't get into with a rag, it leaves marks on the pot :( So, paste wax it is..

All in all, I was pleased enough with the colors in the firng that I definitely will do it again. I also tried some china painting on some of the pots, but I did not get enough heat to set the china paint in some spots. I won't prefire the china paint because of the lead- I will not contaminate my kiln. It's got potential, I just need more heat.

On another note, I did get a small freebie kiln- I think there may be raku in my future.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Menorah Park Pottery

Pots made recently by the seniors at Menorah Park in Beachwood. I have the best time working with these folks. Hand built, textured with stamps and fabrics, fired to ^6.