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Mason Stains and Slip


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#1 KatzPots

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Posted 29 July 2011 - 11:17 AM

I am looking for some guidelines on coloring slip with Mason Stains.
I use white clay that's left over from trimming, dry it, add water back to it, sieve and add stain color to that.
So far, my colors are working out pretty well using a 90/10 percent clay/stain.
The gray color of the clay makes it's visually hard to know if I'm adding enough stain to the slip until I bisque and then glaze.

Should the wet slip have an intensity of color when mixed or is it sometimes going to be "weak" in coloration?
What is an average percentage of stain to slip?
Are you supposed to add the dry stain to wet slip?
Should I be adding dry stain to dry clay and then add water?

I have been testing but that's a long trial and error process and I know there's potters with answers out there!
Thanks for any words of wisdom.



#2 Chris Campbell

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Posted 29 July 2011 - 11:50 AM

I use slips with Mason Stains all the time so I can help and I have an area of my website where I discuss coloring clays with Mason Stains.
http://www.ccpottery.com/murrinis.html

Your colored slips will darken as you fire so the initial wet color should never look as dark as you eventually want it. Some colors look washed out until they are fired ... then Wham!! So you just have to trust the fact that you have added enough. After bisque firing, wet the piece and that color will be very close to what it will look like at Cone 6.

In pinks, yellows, mauves, light green I add up to 20 - 25% depending on how bright I want the final color.
In dark colors like mazerine, brown, forest green ... 8 - 10% will do it.

I mix mine in a blender ... water, clay, stain.

For your own sanity, run some tests ... just lines of color on plain tiles of your clay.
Mix a measured batch at the highest concentration, then use a teaspoon to measure one part plain slip to one part saturated, then two parts plain to one part saturated ... this will give you a good idea of how quickly your colors change so you can guage what you like and how much you need.
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#3 MadMudder

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Posted 29 July 2011 - 01:27 PM

Chris you are a good woman for answering questions so well and helping others in their clay lives.
I would of course add to test before putting it on anything you want to keep!!

B
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#4 KatzPots

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Posted 29 July 2011 - 06:07 PM

Thanks Chris! This is great information and giving the link to your site was terrific. It was interesting to learn that your slip mix was thick like cookie dough. I thought it was supposed to be thinner like cream and was having trouble getting it to be opaque without a several coats. I am firing to bisque 04 and glaze 06, so do you think this makes a difference in percentages?

I agree with MadMudder that you're a good woman to answer my questions so well. This forum is a very useful place and, although this is my first post, I've gotten plenty of good info from other posters.

#5 Chris Campbell

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Posted 29 July 2011 - 08:34 PM

Well, thanks for the compliments ... I think of all the potters who answered my questions and passing on info is like thanking them again.

I can't help much with information for firing that low ... My Mason colors all get fired higher, so get brighter through heat work.
If I was firing that low I would probably use Amaco underglazes, since they are nice rich colors at that temp. I open the jars and let them thicken up to yogurt like cream, then use them like slips.

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#6 KatzPots

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 06:51 PM

Thanks for the advice on trying the underglazes. I have not worked with them either and, since you should try everything once, I may try them next.

I started low firing after going to a conference recently, liked what I saw and wanted to try it. The Mason stains are working very well at this temperature and create nice colors. There are so many things to try with pottery that it makes it very exciting to learn new techniques and be inspired by other potters. This community forum is great.



#7 sasijuhls

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 07:27 PM

Recently I observed several items where colored slip was used in the decoration. I have been surfing the internet to gather as much information as I could on making colored slip. I'm finding (if I am correct) that there is actually 2 different ways to use these Mason Stains, with Glazes and with Slip. The glazed process confuses me because I keep reading about not having this and that - such as zinc, etc or it would alter the color. Makes me feel like I need to be a scientist. With the colored slip the one I am actually interested in - seems we just need to mix the clay with the slip at a percentage. There where several questions I am trying to find answers to and would love the help. The first is, can purchased ready made slip be used with these mason stains to make colored slip? Second, when these colored slips are fired are they gloss or matte? Reason I ask about the matte is, I keep reading that it has to match the glaze contents. Am I reading things into my searching that I shouldn't.



#8 Benzine

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 09:05 PM

My students love the Amaco underglazes. I like them as well, but I don't flock to them, like the students do.
"Anything worth believing, is worth questioning"

#9 yedrow

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 10:55 PM

Thanks Chris! I was wondering about exactly what you posted!

Joel.




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