In The Studio…

A serial killer?? Gasp!
Nope…it’s just me coming in from the cold. A cold day in the studio, 50 degrees, is a good time to test glazes instead of throwing pots.

Getting the test tiles ready. Sometimes I carve them like my pots to see how the glazes look on the textured surface.

Made sure to mark the edge of the tile with a “6”. See it? I’ll be testing cone 6 glazes and don’t want to get the tiles mixed up with my cone 10 tiles.

Made a bucket of porcelain tiles, too. These aren’t carved but I used the mishima (how is that word spelled??!) technique for transparent glazes.

This is the recipe. It comes highly recommended by my clay compadres, Brock and Kalika. He gave me the recipe, I sent it along to her. Now it’s my turn. It is a clear, gloss. I’ll try to adjust it to an opaque satin matt with options of subtle colors. Am also interested in getting a little micro crystal action going. Hey! anybody out there have a glaze like that already? Save me some work here!

Ready set go. (I think it’s time to invest in a digital scale. Andrewwwww??)

It would take tooo long to fill up the kiln with little test tiles, so I am making some cups.

And…I’ll be making some vases. Here’s how that goes.

First I throw a cylinder with a thicker than usual bottom. I cut the wall off and set the cylinder aside, carefully shaping it into an oval. The bottom remains on the wheel.

The wall has a split rim and I push down and in on each end to make a good place for a handle…or a wad of chewing gum. Whatever.

When I ovaled out the cylinder, it became longer than the bottom is wide, of course. Since I left the bottom extra thick, I could take it off the wheel head and stretch it out.

I attached the wall to the slab. I’ll use a sureform tool to take away the excess at the bottom later. And I added a couple of handles…or is that chewing gum? This is when I tuck it in the damp box for a good night’s sleep.

The next day I take care of that excess at the bottom edge and use slips and carve the surface.

It’s usually a good idea to dry work upside down. There are some little tricks to accommodate thin rims and/or handles. After the bisque, I’ll apply a shino to the vase and the cups. Then more, more, more to get the kiln filled up for the glaze tests!


4 Responses

  1. Hey Tara,
    once again I love to read your wordpress. I may have the satiny opaque glaze try fooling around with EPK and gerstley borate. Try them 50/50 first. That’s all I know for now.

    • Gee, I hadn’t thought of that. Thanks!

  2. Tara, Do you know I have never noticed the Red Star inlay in the gallery of Rd Star? I want a photo, too. Tom was interested in the Downtown Underground, where your Suzy-Q resides. I am passing on your website with the photo of Whitney and the shi-shi duct taped upholstered chair. Loved your photos. Time for Ceramic Arts Daily to notice.

    • Really? You are kidding me, no? It has always been there, teehee.
      The cave rocks! I’ll send you contact info for Tom.

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