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oddartist

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About oddartist

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    My own little world/Antelope, CA

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  1. Interesting device, the tile setter. I just went out to measure the kiln to see which size to order, then did the math only to realize if I simply buy one more shelf (or two half-shelves), that would be the maximum I would have space for anyway. I will keep those in mind for my holiday wish-list :-) Thanks for the complement, I spent many sleepless nights through the years trying to decide if I wanted to do them in acrylics on canvas, or stitch a faux 'stained glass' banner, or even real stained glass. It wasn't until I was playing with paper-clay and realized it could be cut with scissors, did I finally tackle this project. Each panel was about 30 inches tall before bisque fire and the pieces all shrank just enough for some interesting grout lines, judging from the several smaller projects I just adhered to the tilebase the other day. I'll post pics when they are completed.
  2. So I finally got another long-term-brain-monkey off my back by making a trio of art tile mosaic works, with hundreds of pieces in varying sizes and shapes. It was from a quilt pattern out of a 1950's women's magazine that I had enlarged by hand way back when I was in my 20's, and the rolled up patterns have been collecting dust for decades and have moved at least a dozen times across the country (even out of the country for awhile). Now that everything has been bisqued , it's time to glaze. Bisquing was easy - just stack all the tiles for each panel on a separate shelf so they don't get mixed up with the others. Now everything has to lay flat and not touching. I have 3 full shelves and two half-shelves but that still leaves a lot of empty space between shelves. Can I use bisqued tiles on shelf supports to add horizontal shelf area? I'd like to try and get at least one panel per firing. But I don't want to ruin any of my hard work either.
  3. I have found I can hardly even GIVE my stuff away if I do shows in suburbia. But set me up in urban Sacramento at a downtown park and I can't keep stuff on the table. I'm just too weird for a lot of folks I guess.
  4. Clay Trap Suggestions?

    You guys are way more hi-tech than I am. Someone gave me 72 large plastic bowls a while back and I keep 2 of them about half full with water. One I do my brush cleaning and hand washing in. The second one is for a final rinse. When the water in the first one gets too muddy I let it sit, pour off the excess water, and dry it out. This dried sludge goes into my dry slop bucket to be added to my dried scraps and rehydrated down the road. The second bowl becomes the first and I grab another bowl for the clean water.
  5. Recently had a bad batch of glaze that left sharp chunks inside a batch of cups. A few had cracks as well. I simply drilled a drainage hole with a masonry bit and will be planting succulents to sell later. No point in tossing perfectly good planters!
  6. Lesson #541

    I have three so-called studio cats, but they're more like toddlers. The wheel is switched off when I finish a piece. My lesson was using Cassius Basaltic to form little hollow orbs. Sure, I poked a 1/4 inch hole through the bottom into the newspaper core - but rested the items on said hole in the kiln to keep them from rolling around. Then I single-fired to cone 5. The effect of the gasses escaping through the hole but being stymied by the shelf would have been spectacular had these orbs not been shaped like cats. Every one looked like they just returned from a trip to Mexico and happened to drink the water after eating beans.
  7. So far my only complaints are: It's addictive. Tried re-bisqueing a mask that had come loose from the base (all the same paperclay), which I had tried to reattach with more paperclay. Did not work at all. Came loose again immediately. I have to babysit the fully-open garage during the burn-out stage so the neighbors don't panic and call the Fire Department. Curious as to what this might do to the kiln coils. I don't put the plugs in until it quits smelling like a campfire. Cool things I've discovered: I can roll it out thin and use scissors to cut shapes when it's partially dried. Almost like cutting thick felt. I can forget to cover something I'm working on or even save pieces of a failed attempt that is bone dry and all it takes is a few spritzes of water to bring it back to life. It dries quickly enough to provide a solid backbone for delicate sculpture.
  8. I picked up a bag of paperclay last week and I'm in love. Let me back up. I have been creating for over half a century. I started painting with tempura, went to oils, then watercolor, then discovered acrylics, where I spent a few decades. I've turned my energy towards ceramics the past few years and have gone from clay to clay trying to find the right one for me. While I will still play with different throwing clays, I have found my sculpture clay. The difference between clays has never been so defined! It's like comparing oils to acrylics. Oils take a long time to dry and are far more particular that fast-drying, easily-fixable acrylic paints. Sculpture clays are perfect for those who choose to work more methodically. I want instant gratification and have been achieving some forms I thought I would have to really fight with by using paperclay. I'm wondering if there are any pitfalls I'm overlooking and would love any hard-earned knowledge from those who have used this fabulous material.
  9. My kiln is in the garage, and when bisquing I don't bother with opening a door since the roll-up door is not a snug fit. When glazing I roll the door up a few inches (enough for the cats to get under, but not the dog) and open the side door a bit to allow air flow. I'm in CA so I'm not as cold as some of you, but the other day it was quite cold but I wanted some studio time, so I turned the kiln on low and left the lid open long enough to take the chill off so I could get some work done. I need to get my spare propane tank filled and drag out my sunflower heater!
  10. Well, sounds like it's going to be more trouble than it's worth so I'll try to find something else.
  11. And the recipe is one of the featured blog posts from just a few days ago! I thought the Lana Wilson's Purple Aqua low fire glaze looked simple enough with so few ingredients so I figured I would start with that as my first self-mixed glaze. I got a gift certificate from hubs for my local clay store and went online to see what it would cost for glaze making supplies but couldn't find Pemco Frit 626 or Ferro Frit 3289. So I started looking elsewhere online and STILL have come up with a big nada. Can someone help me figure out a decent substitute? I hope to use it on Steve's White clay and possibly a low fire terra cotta. Or, better yet, I'd love something similar in a mid-range glaze. I love the lavender/turquoise combo.
  12. I always candle for a few hours no matter how dry things seem and I'm never had a piece explode.
  13. I agree with Stephen. Everything eventually finds its person. I take stuff to some sales that I use simply to fill a shelf, but it amazes me how many people want that weird, misshapen bowl or that mug with the strange glaze combo, especially since I price them so cheaply. I make a couple of dollars to reimburse my materials and someone gets a cool handmade item.
  14. Drying Cabinet Idea

    To keep things dampish and drying verrrrrrry slowly during our hot weather I hang a shower curtain liner across the front of the metal file cabinet I use as a drying shelf. During the winter, when things are cold and damp, I do the same, except I then place an old blowdryer on low inside and use an old cotton sheet instead of the shower curtain. Bonus is it also warms my studio enough to work in!
  15. Local Clay Test

    Nerd- I did mix some of this about 50/50 with some B-mix I had laying around and threw a small bowl with it. It fired to cone 04 okay but turned the B-mix sort of pinkish. Never did try to glaze it or fire it hotter.
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