Monday, October 13, 2008

glazing

Once the pieces have been bisque fired, they are ready to be glazed. I apply wax to areas where I do not want glaze to stick, mostly on the bottom of the piece (shown above). If a piece is glazed on the bottom, it will melt onto the kiln shelf during the firing, and would have to be broken off.

When a piece has one color on the inside, and another color on the outside, I glaze the inside first. I pour the glaze into the piece, swish it around, and pour it out. The inside glaze has to dry a bit before the outside glaze can be applied. Once the inside has dried, I dunk the outside of the piece into a bucket of glaze. Shown below are fully glazed pieces. The color will come out when the glaze is taken up to around 2200F, or cone 8 in clay speak.

I made a new batch of glaze yesterday, it's always a bit of a mystery as to what it will actually look like once fired. Even if I follow the same recipe every time, the final result is always slightly different. Working with clay is an exercise of giving up control, which is hard to do for a trained graphic designer.