Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
ppony123

How Does One Go About Getting This Kind Of Watercolory Stain Look?

Recommended Posts

I'm new. ;) I've been kindly encouraged to ask the questions I fear asking because I'm such a rank beginner. I'm a big believer in trying to suss out answers before I bother people w/ questions. BUT, I'm getting frustrated.

 

I really LOVE the look Blandine Anderson gets on her pieces. I'm getting better at creating some nice textured surfaces to catch some of the stains. But what should I be using because I'm pretty darned sure the terra sig I'm using now won't work even if I water it down.  Additionally, I'm so in the dark about what kind of overall stain or oxide (I KNOW I'm not even using the right terms) I should apply to get that nice wash look to bring it together and when you wipe it away, you have some still sitting in the recesses which is a look I love. Which is good for black and which for the brown?

 

Heeeeeelp!

 

It's not letting me attach pix so I put a link her site below. :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The images you posted the link to are low enough resolution that I can't tell exactly what's going on there, other than a lot of layers, and likely multiple firings. Sig in that instance likely isn't going to get you that textural look, and you're right, it's not the right tool for the job. Stains or oxides are very likely what this artist is using. Straight red iron oxide will usually give you a brown, and black can either be a black Mason stain, or a combination of oxides, usually manganese, iron and copper.

 

That said, you're going to have to do a lot of testing on your own to figure out *exactly* what you want, and you're going to have to make some creative decisions that will maybe be different than hers in the end. You need to learn the material, and in ceramics particularly that means a lot of testing and doing things "wrong." Keep in mind that what is undesirable in one instance may be the exact thing you want in another instance. Testing is all just finding information, and it's valuable no matter if you're making functional pots or fine art sculpture.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The images you posted the link to are low enough resolution that I can't tell exactly what's going on there, other than a lot of layers, and likely multiple firings. Sig in that instance likely isn't going to get you that textural look, and you're right, it's not the right tool for the job. Stains or oxides are very likely what this artist is using. Straight red iron oxide will usually give you a brown, and black can either be a black Mason stain, or a combination of oxides, usually manganese, iron and copper.

 

That said, you're going to have to do a lot of testing on your own to figure out *exactly* what you want, and you're going to have to make some creative decisions that will maybe be different than hers in the end. You need to learn the material, and in ceramics particularly that means a lot of testing and doing things "wrong." Keep in mind that what is undesirable in one instance may be the exact thing you want in another instance. Testing is all just finding information, and it's valuable no matter if you're making functional pots or fine art sculpture.

I don't even see pictures. I tried to post them but I can't even see them on the page here. I'm sorry that you do see something but they're bad. There's an upload issue. :(

 

I'm all about testing, but when I don't know what to test with, it's daunting. And expensive. :(  I'm not even sure what to ask for at the store or online what to look for.  Like I said, I'm new. I've only been doing ceramics fora year and a half and that's certainly not been full time. I wish I knew so much more, I'm trying to learn. I'm reading  lot, but you can only absorb what you brain can build on when it's ready to. sigh

 

I was just hoping someone could give me a little nudge in a direction. Like use this oxide or that oxide to get this color or that like you hinted at. Use it in slip or as a wash. See what I mean? I'm so frustrated. It's also so frustrating to just test test test test. Spend spend spend spend and just not ever create art. I'm getting psyched out. I don't want to give up but I'm getting so upset. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As per her web page ...

 

> Colors are applied as slips, glazes, oxides, enamels and lustres.

 

She is using everything at every stage of her work.

 

I would suggest you start in the easiest way ... Velvet underglazes.

They are easy to use at any stage and have a wide range of predictable colors.

After bisque firing, you can easily wipe on and off leaving the color just in the texture.

They look good glazed or unglazed.

They can be successfully fired at almost every temp.

 

Once you have this under your belt, branch out to oxides or stains.

Lusters are tricky so save them for much later.

 

Take a deep breath, Go one step at a time and smile ... underglazes are easy and fun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From her website description, she is doing multiple layers of slips, stains, glazes, inglazes and over glazes or even lusters to get the preferred look. She also states that she uses multiple firing to build up the surface.

 

 

best,

Pres

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From her ceramics page . . . and if you click on the works for sale tab, you can see some very nice work.

 

"Stenciled and incised details are added before the first firing.

"Colours are applied as slips, glazes, oxides, enamels and lustres.

"Works are fired at least three times, the highest temperature being 1230 Centigrade."

 

Likely approach . . . applying colored slips at greenware stage, then bisque firing; adding glazes and oxide stains/washes at cone 6 glaze firing; then adding enamels and lustres at a third firing.

 

Testing is necessary as your clay will behave differently than hers (unless using the same). Check out Robin Hopper's books for advice on how to mix stains and washes; he provides amounts, what combinations produce what colors, etc. Check out books on China painting for advice on enamels and lustres. The process for this type of work is time sensitive . . . you really have to work around the clay and when it is ready for carving, applying slips, etc. And it takes time to make mistakes and find out what works for you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Colors are applied as slips, glazes, oxides, enamels and lustres

Yes she is working each piece at every stage.

I agree with Chris, start with something like velvets. Jan Mars website

may have more technical info. She works in a similar way in building color.

or google her. I have read articles about how she does it.

 

http://www.janismarswunderlich.com

 

 

 

Marcia

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From her ceramics page . . . and if you click on the works for sale tab, you can see some very nice work.

 

"Stenciled and incised details are added before the first firing.

"Colours are applied as slips, glazes, oxides, enamels and lustres.

"Works are fired at least three times, the highest temperature being 1230 Centigrade."

 

Likely approach . . . applying colored slips at greenware stage, then bisque firing; adding glazes and oxide stains/washes at cone 6 glaze firing; then adding enamels and lustres at a third firing.

 

Testing is necessary as your clay will behave differently than hers (unless using the same). Check out Robin Hopper's books for advice on how to mix stains and washes; he provides amounts, what combinations produce what colors, etc. Check out books on China painting for advice on enamels and lustres. The process for this type of work is time sensitive . . . you really have to work around the clay and when it is ready for carving, applying slips, etc. And it takes time to make mistakes and find out what works for you.

This is what I was looking for. :) It's really hard to know what to ask for when you don't know what to ask for, because if you knew what to ask for, you'd know. LOL  I got what her site said, but what she lists is everything at her disposal, and not everything is necessarily applied to each piece and I just don't know what things make what marks necessarily. Like, are the bigger swaths of color likely a colored slip and the washes oxides? I know there's no way to know w/o actually asking her and I've tried not to. Inevitably, my own experiments will teach me things and give rise to my own look, it just helps to start somewhere. Loom at something you like and while you learn about that, you'll eventually get somewhere.

 

Velvets are actually the first thing I started to learn with and I have quote a bit of them here. I actually had trouble w/ them rubbing off when I'd fire them on the greenware and then I'd apply a semi-watered black wash to wipe back and no matter what cloth or sponge I used, no matter how light or heavy I put pressure, I was wiping away the supposedly fired UG to reveal the clay color underneath. It was frustrating and now I recall that it was my primary reason I went to try Sig because I was hoping something else would be a bit more durable in that technique. It did turn out to be more durable, but still, some color wipes away on raised areas.  Could it not be getting fired long enough? hot enough? As I said, I pique fire w/ the underglaze on it to ^04. 200 degrees an hour and hold for 10 minutes at the selected temp.  It could be in how I'm firing it I'm sure. I don't know. sigh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is happening is unusual ... I have never had fired underglazes wash away. If they are applied too thick they will sometimes chip off.

 

Since you have a supply of velvets try some small test tile experiments.

 

Make a couple dozen tiles. .

Number them and make notes to keep track of your work.

Carve them with a very simple pattern. Let them get bone dry.

 

Leave some plain and decorate the rest with various colors of undiluted underglaze ... each with 1,2 or 3 coats of underglaze.

Fire to Cone 06 or 04 ... with witness cones to make sure you are getting to the right temp.

 

Once they have been bisqued, paint on your black underglaze ... undiluted ... over them, let it dry thoroughly and wipe off.

Notice which colors wipe off .., is it one coat? Or the ones that got more coats?

Which ones do you like? What looks closest to what you want?

 

Also, this note from her bio ...

 

>After completing her Fine Art Ceramics (BA Hons) at Exeter College of Art and Design, Blandine taught for five years at colleges in Somerset before setting up her first ceramic studio in Devon in 1988.

 

She's been doing this for a long, long time.

Best wishes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"I know there's no way to know w/o actually asking her and I've tried not to."

 

Um, why don't you just contact her via her website and ask? Even if she doesn't want to disclose too much she might share enough to get you started.  Worth a shot.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

could you tell us something about you, your location, your previous art experience if any, your studio situation, what clay you use, what cone you can fire to, in what kind of kiln.  each of us approachs making pottery from a different place, knowing more about you helps us answer your questions.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OP i hear your frustration.

 

i am so glad i can take classes at a community college. i have so many people to ask questions - the teacher, the lab tech, the TA and other advanced students. the material is all there - so i get to experiment.

 

i know testing is a pain but i have discovered they are worth it. i was using my forms as test tiles and they'd come out so awful that i'd have to go back and test.

 

i really wish you could find a school or studio to take lessons in. it saves so much time to learn the basics.  we have advanced students who have wheels at home but they still come to school to use the studio because they still learn new techniques and can talk about their problems to others.  i also learn from fellow students who try different things. 

 

so i really, really hope life allows you to find a place to learn the basics. so much of pottery is also touchy feely that looking and hearing is not enough. what look me 6 months to figure out on my own once i started school i learnt in a week.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One of the common grievances I hear out of many people beginning to work with clay (and one of my own mos hated tasks!) is the need for testing. I know it's maddening, but particularly if you're not working around other clay people that you can share answers and information with, there is no way around it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

.  Additionally, I'm so in the dark about what kind of overall stain or oxide (I KNOW I'm not even using the right terms) I should apply to get that nice wash look to bring it together and when you wipe it away, you have some still sitting in the recesses which is a look I love. Which is good for black and which for the brown?

 

Heeeeeelp!

There's a couple of web-pages worth a read which might help you out - links below.

 

Lots of recipes on the first link and the second is more of a brief  *how to*

 

 

http://www.angelfire.com/art2/shambhalapottery/oxidewashes.html

 

http://www.fireverseceramics.com/using-oxides.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry it took me a few days to get back to this. BUSY studio. :)

THANKS everyone for your recommendations and suggestions and links. 

 

I don't mind testing per se, what I mind is trying things blindly because it costs so much $. I try to get as educated of a guess as I can but ultimately, it's blind testing and then I don't even know what I'm doing right or wrong. As said earlier, the issues I was having w/ velvet underglazes was evidently unusual. I had it consistently even though I played a little w/ the speed of ramp, went before ^05-04 and did different hold times. Still, crap-shoot for me. I think there is no way around finding a way goatee some classes somewhere. We don't have any close by me which is a problem as well cost, but I'l going to have to figure it out somehow. I'm going to have to make it a huge priority I think. Somehow. I just hate making my family sacrifice for me. :(

 

In answer to a question as to who I am and where I am and what kiln I have. I'm in MN. I have been starting out w/ a Paragon E-12 (I think) tabletop, but I just got a Skutt KM1218-3 but haven't wired for it yet. My Paragon can safely go to ^04 and I have pushed to 03 a few times.  Got a BFA in '92 but no ceramics experience. Did graphic design for a dozen years, transitioned to painting horse sculptures in oils for the last dozen+ years and now I'm in clay. So far, just earthenware, but I am eager to try stoneware and have 100# of it here to dive in to.

 

I did eventually send her a message this morning to ask a few questions. Just hoping she wouldn't spend too much time, just maybe saying she uses x-oxide as a wash or something like that. Being pointed in the right direction when you feel like you're standing there playing Pin the Tail on the Donkey w' the blindfold on, sure helps to not go wandering off too far.

 

 

Thanks for your willingness to help me, guys!! <3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The hardest part of ceramics is that even if the creator tells you exactly what she did, the chances of it coming out right the first time is so low its absurd. And even if it does, it might not continue to work the same way.

 

So your going to have to invest in testing the majority of the time to get what you want. This is the hardest part of this craft. Nothing travels well. I could give my neighbor a bucket of my glaze and and tell him to fire it and I bet it wouldn't look the same as a pot I just pulled from my kiln. It is the nature of the ceramic beast.

 

If she gives you a starting point then that is 50% of the battle, the other 50% will be you figuring out how to do what she has learned to do with years invested in it.

 

Good luck and stay focused!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.