Friday, December 31, 2010
I read about using a hand held mixer for glazes online somewhere (John Britt?) and I thought it might work. Well today I used my new mixer for the first time. Hot damn Skippy it rocks.
Normally when I mix a batch of a test glaze I mix 300 grams in a small tupperware container. I run the glaze through an 80 mess sieve twice to mix it. It's a slow and messy process.
Today I stuck my new mixer into the text glaze turned it on and 30 seconds later the glaze was perfectly mixed with no mess at all. What would have taken me 20 minutes before took me less than a minute. And it was much cleaner.
If you mix glazes buy a hand held mixer. You will be happy.
Thank you Santa!
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
So I started to think about iron yellows. Brother Thomas' influence. I haven't been able to find any good examples of an iron yellow for cone 6 oxidation online. I was scratching my head. I was surfing and googling and generally flailing blindly. As it happens sometimes the answer was right in front of me. Literally. Right in front of me was a platter I made last year, lorio ash, cone 6 oxidation and a beautiful yellow. The colorant? Iron. I just needed to tweak the recipe from being an ash glaze to being a normal stable glaze.
Alberta Slip 43.9
Wood Ash 13.9
Grestely Borate 8
The tweaked glaze:
Alberta Slip 53.9
Grestely Borate 10.2
Red Iron Oxide 3
Titanium Dioxide 6
I will be testing this soon.
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
In the mean time I was looking for another black temmoku. I came across this recipe that is from Nigel Woods' great book:
Ball Clay 14.7
Iron oxide 9
Mang dioxide 3.2
Cobalt carb 0.5
This is a cone 10 glaze. So I tweaked it:
Neph Syn 22
Grestely Borate 17
Iron oxide 9
Mang carb 3.2
Cobalt carb 0.5
I changed the manganese dioxide to carbonate as 3.2 percent of manganese dioxide makes me nervous. I added borate to help drop the melting point and removed some clay for the same reason. Also swapped the feldspar from custer to neph syn. then normalized the recipe to 100 without colorants.
I also have been reading a lot about Brother Thomas. His work is truly inspiring. I saw some of his pots have manganese over temmoku. I am going to mix up some mang. washes with grestely borate.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
I have a line test of bailey's red (cone 6). Line testing from 5%-14% RIO.
I am also testing a new clear. No line test just a single tile. If it melts and doesn't craze it's a winner.
A test tile of my cone 6 Obsidian #3. This is derived from a Richard Aerni recipe:
Alberta Slip 75
Cobalt Carb 5
Next is a new black temmoku.
Nepheline Syenite 14.4
Lithium Carbonate 2
Red Iron Oxide 9
On top of these tests I made test tiles of some of my normal glazes - lorio ash, nuka, and a chrome/tin pink.
I'll post pictures when I get them - probably after Jan 1.
Oh and I was pretty bummed about my last glaze batch. Everything was over fired. I think one of the kilns at the new studio is over firing. The bisqued test tiles were also over fired. I had to toss out about 10 of them as they wouldn't take any glaze - they had partially vitrified. So I am not starting over with my normal cone 6 glazes. I am talking to the powers that be at the new studio about fixing the kiln instead.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Monday, December 13, 2010
The glazes I used at my last studio didn't transfer well to my latest studio, so it's time to test. I decided to do it right. I made up about three dozen test tiles and I am starting with a blank sheet of paper and what colors I want. The first thing I want is a good black temmoku. I don't want Val's Temmoku Gold. I don't want the crystals, I want a smooth, glossy pitch black temmoku.
So I pulled out all my books (I have a bunch of glaze books) and started reading - why are most cone 6 temmokus full of crystals? How can I get a beautiful fat black tenmmoku at cone 6? I had tried before but failed. I found the answer this time. One little paragraph tucked away in Michael Bailey's "Oriental Glazes". The crystals form when the glaze is low in alumina (duh, like all those glazes that have intentional crystals). So the key is to flux down a cone 10 temmoku while keeping the clay content level with the cone 10 formula AND not overloading the glaze with calcium. So my flux options are adding grestely borate, possibly lithium, replacing the feldspar with neph syn, maybe even adding a couple parts barium carb.
On top of that I have a couple of line tests lined up - trying to figure out what the hell happened to my iron red and what recipe will work in these kilns.
I'll post the actual recipe for the temmoku once I get one that I like.
Sunday, November 28, 2010
First I want some good ash glazes. I will be working to get a version of lorio ash that works in the new kilns. I am also going to try to get some color into the ash glazes. I will be doing line tests to see if I can get a purple ash using manganese carb.
I have a clear but it's not quite right. I will look to reduce the melting point a bit.
I will be doing line tests for an iron red. This one should have been a gimme but for some reason isn't looking right.
I will be looking for a black temmuko.
I will be creating a faux celedon.
I will try my chrome red to see if it works in the new kilns.
As I do the line tests I will post recipes.
Thursday, November 25, 2010
I got my first batch of pottery glaze fired at the new studio. It was ugly. I had used all glazes I had previously used, tuned, tweaked for cone 6 oxidation firing in an electric kiln. The new studio uses cone 6 oxidation firing in an electric kiln so I figured I was money. Not so much.
My lorio ash? Seriously over fired. All webbing and definition was gone. Just an ugly tan mess. A lot of crystals.
My seiji nuka? Same - over fired. Ran and pooled into dark brown nastiness. No lovely green.
The Bailey's red that is one of my favorites? Came out almost black. No idea what happened with this glaze. The others were obviously too fluxed for the kiln and require some tweaks to bring them into line with the new kilns. This totally different color perplexes me.
The only glaze that worked was a floating blue. Probably my least favorite glaze. I only use when someone asks specifically for it (in this case my wife asked for a large bowl with "that blue"). It melted correctly, looks perfect.
So my next project is extruding several dozen test tiles and going to work refining my standard recipes to work in these new kins. They fire a hotter cone 6 and appear to take longer to cool off than the kilns I have worked with in the past. Seems like I should be able to make use of those traits... I will dust off some crystalline glaze recipes.
The very good news out of this batch was all my tumblers I was going to put decals on came out. I will be doing my first batch of decals over the weekend. Should get them fired in the next couple of weeks.
Monday, November 15, 2010
I am going to old standards, lorio ash, nuka, Bailey's red, blue hare. I also tred a new glaze, a copper red that I am using for a faux celedon. I am hopeful.
I have three large bowls, a platter,and 8 tumblers. The tumblers are all glazed clear.They are going to be a Christmas gift for one of my sons. After the glaze firing I will be using decals to personalize the mugs. I am excited to try this new technique.
Now to resume my quest for a full palette of cone 6 oxidation glazes. Still looking for the rich beautiful tenmoku.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Monday, October 25, 2010
Just didn't have the time nor drive to fix the UI bugs or update it.
If you're interested email me or leave a comment and I will send you a SQL dump so you can set it up on your own machine.
Saturday, October 16, 2010
The one I landed at is probably not going to last long. Just long enough for me to find something better.
I love Pottery Northwest. But it's expensive. Ten weeks costs about $350. I found somewhere that's less than half the price, $145 for 10 weeks. The new studio is in the local community college. It means I am moving back to cone 6 electric. Which is pretty cool because hey - I have a bunch of tried and true cone 6 oxy glazes. Also this studio does a lot of decal work so I am hoping to lean how to do that.
I am off to spend my Saturday throwing stuff for Christmas. I think I am going to go with platters this year.
I am going to keep looking for a private studio where I can come and go as I please, experiment with glazes and doesn't cost an arm and a leg.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
Last night I put the finishing touches on 3 tea pots. Any tea pot is an accomplishment for me – or any potter really. Tea pots, in my opinion, are the pinnacle of our craft. I incorporated several new tricks and techniques and created 3 tea pots I am mostly happy with. One is the best pot I have made to date.
All three were thrown as closed forms. All three have thrown spouts. All three have lids cut from the original closed form. All three have attached then pulled handles. Handles are still the bane of my existence. One handle came out exactly as I envisioned. One came out Ok. One is meh.
In addition to the tea pots I threw 3 large platters. I used techniques I picked up at PNW. The platters are also the best platters I’ve thrown. Large, good thinkness, lines I like.
This post isn’t to brag but to reflect on how much my time at PNW has helped me improve my pottery skills. I am eagerly awaiting the Fall schedule to see what part of my game I can work on.
Now I just have to hope that I don’t trash the sweet new pots when I glaze them ;)
Saturday, July 24, 2010
I am learning to cut darts out to turn pots oval.
I am pulling pouring lips on pots.
I was challenged to "make a cute pot". Ever try to make a cute pot?
I am making tea pots from closed forms.
I am making spouts from slabs.
These are all new for me. The pots I am making show my inexperience with the techniques. So no cool new pots to post. Not even kinda good new pots to post. But hey, I am happy and making progress.
Thursday, July 8, 2010
I realized I am spending a lot less time in the studio recently. There are reasons which don't need to be discussed here but I am making an effort to keep my butt in the studio.
I am enjoying the new class. Learning a lot. Using techniques that I am not comfortable with. Making pots I have never made. Very challenging and rewarding.
A lot of greenware drying. I will post pics once things start to fire.
I am still trying to obsess less about glazes. I am doing one experiment using Richard Aerni's slips and glazes. Again, will post details as things fire.
Saturday, June 26, 2010
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Saturday, May 8, 2010
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Saturday, May 1, 2010
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Thursday, April 22, 2010
| || |
6 (my current version)
As you can see I kept the moving parts down to a two; EPK and GB. I will be testing 4 of these soon. The fifth one I already tested, my current version and it ran.
While I was mixing up glazes I mixed up an oldie but goodie - Reitz Green. I freakin' loved this glaze in the past. But never brought it down to cone 6. I know the kilns at PNW are higher than the kilns I am used to so I am hoping I can get this glaze working. I also swirled up a quick batch of Pinnel Celadon. I haven't found a celadon I like yet.
Oh and before I forget - the new version of my glaze db web site is almost complete. Just finishing up the UI now. Putting in things like pagination and print pages.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Friday, April 9, 2010
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
- Shino must be put on thick or it blows.
- Iron wash over shino blows.
- The container didn't say clear, it said clear blue.
- Shino over SCM blows.
- I should write down my experiments because the one bowl that came out great - yeah I couldn't tell you what's on it if you waterboarded me.
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Saturday, February 27, 2010
Thursday, February 25, 2010
This is the house iron red. Dead sexy. I would marry this glaze. As always my phone camera pic does not do justice to this beauty.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Saturday, February 20, 2010
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
I have had all the chemicals as I have been making my own glazes for several years but I have never done it at home. I have a work bench in my garage and I just organized everything on the work bench. No big thing.
But something about it got me excited. Maybe it was the ease of having my entire ceramics reference library a few feet away. I went inside and grabbed my copy of “The Complete Guide To High Fire Glazes” and put it with my Ohaus scale. I didn’t need the book… but it was cool to have it so accessible. I am so used to not having any of my notes or books when I am mixing glazes.
I mixed up four glaze tests. I should have some bisqued test tiles that I can use tonight. In theory I should have fired tests by the weekend. I am testing two cone 6 shinos, a cone 6 copper red, and my modified lorio ash glaze. That’s not too experimental but I need to see how it will react in the new kilns and I have only fired it in oxidation, so let’s see how it reacts in reduction. I’ll post recipes if any of them are worth keeping. The lorio ash has been posted a couple of times.
I am hopeful on all the test recipes. All but the lorio ash came from John Britt. And he is The Man when it comes to glazes. While I am sure the glazes will need to be tweaked I am hopeful that all will be good starting points. I am super excited about the copper red. The pictures of the test tiles I have seen are nothing short of jaw dropping.
I will also make tests of all the house glazes at the studio. I need to see how they look on the clay I am using. I will be mixing up 1k gram batches of my old stand by glazes; SCM, Obsidian 3, lorio ash, crystal base w/ cobalt, seiji nuka. I am hoping to get use of the house iron red, temmoku, and tea dust glazes.
Slightly off topic but holy crap it rocks having a house big enough to set up a wood shop in my shed, an office for books in one of the empty bedrooms and still have plenty of room to dedicate my garage to making glazes. Oh and the car still fits in the garage.