March's kiln-load

Gilroy (Sunset Z14), CA(Zone 9a)

Got some finished stuff out of the kilns last month. I made a lot of cups and soapdishes because I was testing glazes. This was my first experiment with sprayed glaze using my compressor, and I didn't know how anything would turn out. I was really pleased with most of the glazes, and I like spraying a whole lot better than any other method of glazing I've tried so far. Most of these are ^10; a few are ^5. One of the big grapevine bowls has to be refired, again, as the glaze has bubbles in it. Not sure if the glaze was too thick, or if I loaded it in the wrong spot in the kiln. I think the glaze may have cooled too fast.

Photos are here:

Currentlly working on throwing & piercing orchid planters...they're a lot of work!

The tenmoku grapevine vase was my favorite piece of this batch, but it's so shiny I couldn't get a good picture of it because it reflects everything!

Carlsbad, CA(Zone 10b)

How busy you've been. You must have been pleased when you opened the kiln and saw how beautifully everything turned out! I love the simple texture and design in the soap dishes. The glaze on all the pieces looks so nice and even, no streaks or splotches like my hand glazed projects. My favorites are the taller mug with blue inside (what nice handles on all the mugs), the vase with the greenish glaze and red/brown outlined flowers, and the tan soap dish, but all are just lovely. Each piece looks so professionally done.

Did you paint the edges of the two vases with the red/brown outlined flowers or is that how the glaze turns out?

Thanks for sharing. I may have to look into glaze spraying some day when I'm more organized and set up in one area.

Gilroy (Sunset Z14), CA(Zone 9a)

Thank you! Everything was fired at school, so I didn't get that thrill of personally opening the kiln this time. But the trade-off for that was not having to pay for the gas or stay up all night to fire my kiln at home----well worth the price of a semester's tuition!

Most of the handles were tests----some pulled, some extruded, some slab and some slabbed and then pulled. I'm still not sure which ones I like best. The soapdishes are extruded; they're perfect for glaze-testing.

There are two glazes on the vases---the blue carved one is called Woo Woo Brown (it's the blue one that breaks red-brown on the edges, or where it's thin). It's also on the big blue cup. The glaze on the black grapevine vase is Roy's Tenmoku. This is my first big test of that one on a pot. It's black and breaks brown on n the edges or thin spots (same glaze is on the little espresso cup). I just sprayed 4 light coats on them. Next time I'll probably do it somewhat differently to try to get more contrast on the detail. I think the orchid pots I'm working on will lend themselves to both of those glazes.

If you decide to set up a spray area, I can share some hints. I like it because the glaze goes on so much more evenly and I don't need very much glaze to get good coverage. Instead of gallons for pouring on large pieces, I only need about a pint. When I'm mixing my own glazes, that saves me a lot of materials and I can try more recipes. I just bought another Lark book on glazes this week.....LOVE their ceramic books...

Thanks for the compliments---glad you enjoyed seeing them!

Union Grove, WI(Zone 5b)

Oh... these are all so pretty!!!! My fav's are the Green bowl (pic #3), the blue vase (pic #8), the lighter vase (pic #9) and the soap dishes with the little leaves on them!

Now I really want an extruder die like that to make my own soap dishes!!!!!

Oh...and I LOVE Ceramic books too, and the magazines! Claytimes and Pottery Making Illustrated are my favs! (Ceramic's Monthly is ok but a bit 'artsy' for me :-) )

Gilroy (Sunset Z14), CA(Zone 9a)

Thank you, Chrissy! My husband cut the extruder die for me. I've attached a photo of the profile so you can make one.

I have a large stack of 1970's Ceramic Monthly mags....I totally agree with you! Do you get the daily emails from Ceramic Arts Daily (I think it is)? I've gotten lots of good hints and recipes from them, and it's FREEEEE!

Thumbnail by imapigeon
Union Grove, WI(Zone 5b)

Thanks for sharing the profile, now to see if I can get my hub to cut me one :-) I just got my extruder a few months ago, bought it used from my pottery teacher and have really only used it twice, I have so many visions for using it but have a huge list of other things to make as well.

Plus, right now my home pottery studio is out of commission, had to take the ceiling out to do some heating work so no pottery for me at home. But I love creating things, last night I was working on making ornaments out of my chicken's eggs ... got a few started, ran out of blown eggs ...then started making necklaces out of some old beads I'd made. I'm obsessed with the ornaments, will be eating scrambled eggs every day this week as I clean/blow out more eggshells!

Anyway, I am a huge fan of Ceramic Arts Daily, love to watch their videos ...and mostly love that it's FREEEE!

Gilroy (Sunset Z14), CA(Zone 9a)

I love my extruder, but there's a lot of waste because of warping, which may be due to my not having the edges beveled enough. I just recycle the clay, or course. The curved 2-tone blue soapdish in my photos was one of the warped places I thought I'd try to salvage. It fits around the base of the bowl I use for throwing and holds needle tools & chopsticks!

Union Grove, WI(Zone 5b)

I get a lot of warping via my extruder too. My pottery teacher suggested I put a bag of dried beans/peas or sand on top of the piece while it's drying to flatten/hold it down after extruding, I've not tried it yet but it's worth a try! (she said it's a good way to hold slab built platters flat as well)

Gilroy (Sunset Z14), CA(Zone 9a)

I set anything flat between pieces of green sheetrock.

Union Grove, WI(Zone 5b)

Ima... I do that too, my hub thought I was crazy gathering up all his scraps! However, some things have a rim or some sort of edge (like a platter or your soap dishes) and you don't want to smash that; this is when the bean bag concept is supposed to come in handy.

Gilroy (Sunset Z14), CA(Zone 9a)

I usually let the soap dishes flatten under the greenboard before I attach leaves. I like the bean bag idea for the slab platters I want to make----both of the ones I've tried have cracked in the middle. Maybe too thin. I haven't done a lot of slab work except tons and tons and tons of tiles. Sandbags would be really great for keeping tiles with relief designs on them flattened out, too!

Stafford, VA(Zone 7a)

beab bags or bags or dried beans do sound like a good idea!


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