Friday, July 30, 2010

cone 6 soda pics

So, the Claymaker's cone 6 soda firing was the best one that I have been involved in yet. We got great color, orange peel, glaze reaction, slip reaction, and the sigs looked great. We did fire hotter (cone 6 down, cone 7 at 1/4) and a little more reduced throughout the entire firing (always had 4-6" of flame back pressure out of our top spies/ports). We also sprayed more soda in this time, since Doug and I rebuilt the arch for this firing. So, our total soda ash was 3# to 3 gallons of hot water. Overall, I was super excited. Also tested some Standard clay bodies: the raku clay body (239?) was super receptive to the soda and was very orange, flashy and orange peely. Highwater Clays Bellas Blend was okay, definitely got glassy, but a little grey to white, not too much color.

Here are da pics, let me know what you think.

The one above is a mug by Mary Ann Peters, probably made from Highwater Clay's Helios porcelain. The mug has cone 6 Licorice glaze on it, which makes nice crystals in a nicely reduced and sodarific firing.

The pots above are: teapot- Highwater Clay's Little Loafers clay with Avery Bisque Slip; top bowl: Highwater Clay's P-5 porcelain with cone 6 New Tyler Amber glaze (nice teadust!) over slip trailing and an OM-4 terra sig; bottom bowl, Highwater Clay's Bellas Blend with cone 10 St. John's Black glaze.

Pot above: Teresa Pietsch's sweet little dotty vase, Highwater Clays Phoenix clay with Tile-6 slip (a revised version) and dots of Straw glaze. Good orange peel, sweet piece.

So, the shelves got the most soda. Above are some pots made from dark clays: Highwater Clay's Red Stone and Campbells Clay's Brick Red (bottom stacked bowls and tagine respectively)

...and the finale, a Nancy Garrett bottle made from Highwater Clay's Raku and put in the chimney flue area: heavy soda, super action.

Very excited about our results, and we continue to gather more information on clay bodies, slips, sigs, and glazes for cone 6 soda. If anyone is interested, I'm teaching a cone 6 soda firing workshop in Fairhope, AL, March 21-26, 2011 at the Kiln Gallery and Studio. More info later.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

cone 6 soda firing

Gearing up for a cone 6 soda firing this weekend with a crew from Claymakers. We have a good variety of work that I am very excited to see come out of the kiln. We have a large variety of clay bodies going into the firing and I'm planning on trying to get some different clay bodies tested, 4 or 5 different Standard bodies and Bella's Blend from Highwater Clays. Also, some new glaze tests going in, because really, are there ever enough choices? In our case, way too many choices, but I'm still testing those glazes. Really want to get some slip tests in, but may have to wait until next time. Wish us luck and I'll try and get some photos up in a couple of weeks.

Now, (past) time to get into my studio!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Back from Floyd

Back in the Big Chap from the workshop at the Jacksonville Arts Center in Floyd, VA. Gotta say, Floyd is a very nice place and I miss it already. Floyd reminds me of Mitchell County, NC, where I grew up, only more crunchy and with a lot more hippies. All in all, a great place, and I highly recommend a visit. A great time to go is when the 16 Hands Studio Tour is going on. During Friday, our kiln cooling day, or as Ann put it as a "spoonerism": "coon-killin day", my class and I toured around Floyd and visited some of the 16 Hands artist studios. My class and I were very fortunate to meet and hang out with Ellen Shankin (pot at top), who has a beautiful house and showroom. We dropped by Silvie Granatelli's, who was away, but we were able to visit with her apprentices, Wendy and Sarah, who gave us a great tour and were patient with our questions while they tried to pack up for a show in town. We ended our tooling around at Rick Hensley (pot at bottom) and Donna Polsano's, who, once again, have beautiful showrooms, although Donna had zero/zilch/nada pots because she had sold out at the St. Croix Studio Tour Sale in Minnesota...congrats Donna! I'm looking forward to going back and delighted to know its only 2.5 hours away from Chapel Hill. Hoping to make the Fall 16 Hands sale and also dreaming about an invite to be part of the sale sometime in the future...just putting it out there for the universe to hear. Thanks to Ann, Antoinette, and Edith for a great workshop week and to Floyd and Floydians for providing such a great landscape to work in.