Monday, October 19, 2009

After the tour...

Just a few images from the potters tour...

My friend Shana, trying her hand at turning on the
wheel, gets a lesson from me...

I had a great turnout, thanks to everyone
who stopped out at Brush Valley Pottery!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Post-firing Firing post...

It has been a few days since my last post so this one is going to be a long one...all about the salt firing I just finished monday morning at 3 a.m.! This was the 6th time I've fired the kiln here in Brush Valley and the 3rd time for mostly rawglazed pots. For some of you who aren't potters, this means that I glaze the work when it is leather hard, using slip glazes that have a large amount of clay in the batch recipes. The clay in the glaze allows the glaze to shrink with the pot as water evaporates during the drying process. It can be tricky and most people choose to bisque fire their work and then glaze, but out of necessity, with no electric/bisque kiln here in Brush Valley, and the fact that most of my work only needs a liner glaze, I use this process of once firing. Once the pots are dry, it's time to load and fire.

Mugs tumblers, soup bowls and plates, lidded jars
and pitchers.
The firebox extension worked out great
for preheating the greenware/rawglazed pots.
I loaded it up with large cherry and oak chunks,
clammed it up and went to bed around
4am. At 8 am I returned to find
coals still in the box and started the firing...

Without a Pyrometer to gauge the early
part of the drying process
I used this chimney
thermometer for a wood stove.
I need it for the beginning of the firing
to make sure nothng blows up at the point
where the water left in the pots
starts to "boil" or evaporate...

Toward the end of the firing we used the flame
to stoke off of and had a nice,
even firing of cone ten down.

Heres a picture of the kiln shed and flame coming
from the chimney. As soon as the flame went in, I
stoked again, and the flame lasted abut 1 1/2 minutes per
stoke. This temperature(nearly 2400 degrees) really ate up the wood!

I hope to post pics of the finished results soon! Dont forget about the potters tour! Can't wait to see you all here!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

47 not 50

Well the Earthenware firing wasn't a complete disaster, but I've had better...The liner glaze acted up quite a bit, bubbling and looking either over fired or under fired in places...It may have been a thickness thing or the fact that I used it on greenware...Ron usually bisques everything. The planters and silverware strainers turned out great! Not enough salt in the kiln, either. So, next time I might just leave out the glaze ware and just do all planters...

For now, I'm speeding along to the next cone 1o firing, hopefully loading on Saturday and firing Sat night and Sunday. Sorry again, no pictures, but stay tuned as I'm taking plenty of pictures, I just can't upload them...I'm working on it! 

Well, back to the 47 mugs I have to put handles on...yeah, I know, 47? Why not 50?