I hate not feeling well, but I am pretty sure everyone does, this mid winter cold is a drainer and a downer. but the work must continue at some rate. I am going to do my best to write in my blog at least once a week. Mostly i don’t because i don’t think i have anything very interesting to talk about.
But today i am putting a good part of it all out there. I work a lot with slips, carving and glazes. The great thing about it is there are subtle nuances and differences in the colour of each piece, it isn’t stagnant like a porcelain toilet bowl. The other part is when i am making the piece i have pre conceived notions of what it is going to look like when i finish. Sometimes these two things are eons apart. Unlike painting where I could see what i get, it can come out completely different or have things show up in the texture or application I had not expected.
Potters do hundreds of tests and test firings to achieve the surface results you see when you walk in and see a mug or bowl where the surface captures your eye and draws you in.
In my case all of my glazes and slips are recipes I have worked on for over 20 years. Like a cake recipe they are made of ingredients. Finely ground minerals are weighed out, mixed with a measured amount of water, sieved through a very fine mesh screen and then you have a glaze most often applied after a bisque firing. A slip is a mixture of mostly clay with colour mineral added and is applied to the piece when it is still wet.
Variations on my work can occur based on the thickness of the slip, how wet or dry the pot is when it is applied, the thickness of the glaze, and how hot or cool a spot is in the kiln. What it all comes down to is every opportunity is another opportunity for something to go wrong, or right.