Thursday, October 24, 2013

This One's For You...

...Liz Proffetty, of Liz Proffetty Ceramics! I am sending out this, the last of the Kickstarter mugs today, as well as two last teabowls, to some very patient backers. This mug is going to my potter buddy Liz because I think she will love the delicate colors.

The glaze recipe book is almost done as well, needing only a good ^6 version of Shino Sauce. It's still on my list to write a post about the last firing, in particular the test glazes. It ain't happening today but I might get to it tomorrow!

Friday, October 18, 2013


Anybody wanna buy pots?

The light was perfect for my living room to become my ad hoc photography studio, so I shot some pics and posted new items on my website this afternoon. It was a brilliant sunny day, very warm for mid-Ocotber, and I can think of ways I would rather have spent it than all the fiddly tapping and clicking that is website work, but I keep remi
nding myself that if I had a straight job, I'd go to work rain or shine, no matter how shiny. Discipline!

Here are the new items. Click the photos to see more:

Pop quiz: can you tell which of these items are ^6, and which ^10? Oh, speaking of: several of the ^6 glaze tests came very nice out of the recent firing, including Tenmoku, Amber Celadon, and Magic White. Soda Cobalt was a little puny, and my ^6 version of Shino Sauce was...well, it was different, as they say in Minnesota. I've lost my light, so photos will have to wait until tomorrow. (Aside: is it weird that Blogger does not recognize the word celadon? Tenmuko I can understand; oribe, shino, sure. But celadon? That's just the name of a color. You'll find it in, like, the J. Crew catalog. Huh.)

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Basket Jag

Do you ever go on jags, during which you are interested in making one particular form, and not much else? That was me and these narrow vase-baskets a couple of weeks ago. There are bunches of them in this kiln.

Sometimes it's colanders or berry bowls; once in  blue moon it's teapots; often, of course, it's mugs. I know I can sell all of those things, but these baskets? I feel like I will need to individually explain to shoppers how you would use them. (As a vase, I guess. I was more interested in the form than the function, truth be told.)
Also in this load: salad plates, ice cream bowls, several lidded casseroles, a big serving bowl, a teapot, and a world of mugs. And, ^6 glaze tests! Here's another I am trying out.

Recipe Name:  Shino Sauce ^6

Cone:  6     Color:  Rust Gold
Firing:  Reduction     Surface:  Glossy

Amount     Ingredient
27          Spodumene--Foote
41          Nepheline Syenite
11          Ball Clay--Old Mine #4
5          Kaolin--EPK
9          Soda Ash
7          Gerstley Borate--1999

100         Total

2          Iron Oxide--Red

The original, ^10 recipe came from Keith Phillips blog, Mudstuffing Sketchbook.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Last Outdoor Glazing

Finishing up the last glazing today for a ^6 reduction soda. This will probably be the last firing for which I can glaze outside, which is a bummer: glazing is such a messy business, and my studio inside is pretty small. In the winter I have to do a minor re-arrange every time it's time to glaze. It's a bit chilly out there today, but I don't mind: I've got my hot flashes to keep me warm.

This firing will include 8 test glazes and two flashing slip variations; basically to bring a flashing slip from^10 to ^6 you can usually just add 5-8% Neph Sy to the existing recipe. Write that down! That's my pearl of wisdom for today. That, and, if you are in a hurry, a kind of boilerplate approach to dropping a glaze from ^10 to ^6 is to replace to feldspar 1-for-1 with Neph Sy, and add about 10% gerstley borate. This isn't always the best way to preserve the color or the hand of the glaze but it will get you in the neighborhood. (Always keeping in mind the proportions flux of alumina and silica, which is what I have Glazemaster to help me out with. Yes, it's working again!) Alternatively, you can add 10-15% Ferro Frit 3134, which is now my favorite frit, as it is well-balanced enough itself not to require a lot of adjustment when used in this way.

Among others, I am trying again with the Amber Celadon. Here's the recipe I am testing at ^6:

Amber Celadon test

Alberta Slip          32.2
Wollastonite         12.7
Kaolin                     7.2
Gerstley Borate      9.0
Whiting                   6.8
Silica                    12.7
Neph Sy               19.5

Yellow Ochre         7.6
Bentonite               2.0

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Five Glazes and A Freeze

Gah! I finally get a couple hours to work on my glaze conversions, and  - boom! - five formulas in, the Glazemaster software just ceases to work. So aggravating! It just keeps giving me the Hourglass of Despair. I've sent an email to the folks who sold it to me; I think I may have to de-install and re-install, with a new installation code, which I have to get from them.

Anyway! Here's what I was able to do before the derp dropped:

Recipe Name: Magic White ^6 Test 3A

Cone: 6 Color: White
Firing: Salt/Soda Surface: Semiglossy

Amount Ingredient
19.5 Feldspar--Custer
6 Zinc Oxide
18 Whiting
9 Kaolin--EPK
19 Silica
15 Zircopax
4.5 Spodumene--Foote
9 Gerstley Borate--1999

100 Total

Comments: Careful not to get it too thick! Will crawl or even split ware.

Recipe Name: Magic White ^6 Test 4A

Cone: 6 Color: White
Firing: Salt/Soda Surface: Semiglossy

Amount Ingredient
18.3 Feldspar--Custer
5.6 Zinc Oxide
18.6 Whiting
8.4 Kaolin--EPK
19.4 Silica
13.9 Zircopax
4.2 Spodumene--Foote
11.6 Gerstley Borate--1999

100 Total
Recipe Name: Tenmoku ^6 Test 1

Cone: 6 Color:
Firing: Surface:

Amount Ingredient
53.3 Nepheline Syenite
19.5 Silica
15.2 Whiting
7.1 Ball Clay--Old Mine #4
4.8 Lithium Carbonate

99.9 Total

7.6 Iron Oxide--Red
2.1 Bentonite

Recipe Name: Tenmoku ^6 Test 2

Cone: 6 Color:
Firing: Surface:

Amount Ingredient
45.6 Nepheline Syenite
22.2 Silica
17.3 Whiting
8.1 Ball Clay--Old Mine #4
6.8 Frit--Ferro 3134

100 Total

8.7 Iron Oxide--Red
2.4 Bentonite

Recipe Name: Satin Black ^6 test

Cone: 6 Color:
Firing: Surface:

Amount Ingredient
59 Albany Slip
13.5 Feldspar--Custer
4.5 Strontium Carbonate
6 Talc
15 Whiting
2 Kaolin--EPK

100 Total

1 Chromium Oxide
3 Iron Oxide--Red
2 Manganese Dioxide
1 Cobalt Carbonate

Will be mixing these up today, as well as full buckets of the successful test from last time, for the next firing - hopefully this weekend.