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QothW: What are your most favorite and least favorite things to do in ceramics. Cleaning up doesn't count.

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Pres    896

There have been many suggestions in the question pool about the new Forum format. Not to be prejudicial and ignore these, but there is a Strand started called the New Forum in In the Studio. I believe that it would be sufficient to pin this at the top, and any comments, suggestions, complaints or recommendations be put in the strand. Best to vent in one place, and let it rest.

RonSa asked this a few weeks ago: What are your most favorite and least favorite things to do in ceramics. Cleaning up doesn't count.

 

 I really don't like glazing all that much, but do it because its what we do. I am getting older, and baby sitting a kiln with no setter or controller gets old also. Since I can't complain about cleaning, I won't. So I guess I' settle for glazing. You notice I did not mention throwing, trimming, assembling, handle pulling, handbuilding, loading or unloading the kiln, or even scraping and grinding shelves. Most of these I love doing, some really send me off into another world for hours without ever a care other than the form, the feel of the clay, and my connection to the universe through the clay. I just plain out love getting into it and not knowing anything else. On the negative, I have to be sooooo intellectual about glazing, choice of color, placement, dipping or pouring, spraying or splattering, brushwork or no, and then the fine art of cleaning the bottoms so that they do not detract from the piece. No glazing is definitely my biggest dislike.

 

best,

Pres

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Pres, I'm with you on the glazing. Least favourite job of all. 

I also dislike doing anything with plaster moulds. The nature of of that sort of work tends to be too precise from start to finish, and I don't have the patience for it. It's too much work for not enough payoff. 

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Chilly    329

Least favourite: brush-on-glazing

Most favourite: packing the car ready to go to Potter's camp.  (And glazing at camp, as there are buckets of the stuff.)

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My most favorite - sculpting or wheel throwing 

my least favorite - coming back too late to put handles on and to trim. (Every. Single. Time.) I need to be better about covering them in plastic. 

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RonSa    188

I'm glad I asked this, I was thinking I was the only one that didn't like to glaze. I probably have 3-4 kiln loads that need to be glazed.

I love throwing clay and I could do it for days on end.

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Judith B    52

I join you on glazing. So many times I have been frustrated with the glazing, that's the step where I screw up most of my pieces. But it's not really because of the process, only because of my lack of skill... ^_^

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Pres    896

Glazing becomes easier once you have tested all of the glazes, learned all of the combinations of over/under/thickness variations, and become more intuitive doing it. Then you find there is a new color on the block to try, and it messes up the whole intuitive thing completely.

 

best,

Pres

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Denice    243

Never have liked glazing and I dread when I have to make a plaster slab for drying wet clay,  I love the rest of it.  You have to dislike something or you will never realize how much you love it.   Denice

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Joseph F    865

Favorite: Every part of the process is enjoyable to me. Glazing took me a while to appreciate, but once you start getting results you like and start eliminating other glazes it becomes much better. Last night I decided to eliminate another set of glazes I was planning on using. Now I am only going to be making one set of work, so all my work will look similar and hopefully be recognizable over the years.

Least favorite: waiting on my kiln to cool so I can see what disasters or awesomeness my testing has brought! I sometimes open at 500-600F and let it crash cool since I will be hammering everything anyways! hahaha. Although now that I am making stuff to sell, I doubt I will have this problem as much because I will be making more things while it cools.  Plan to have everything glazed so I can take advantage of opening and unloading at 250F and getting the next load started right away!

Edited by Joseph F

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JBaymore    1,432

Least favorite:  All the paperwork and accounting and taxes and such (when doing this a s business).

Most Favorite:  Pinching and carving Chawan.

best,

.......................john

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LeeU    328

Least favorite is reclaiming clay.  Although it is a budget bonus and it is antithetical to my nature to waste anything (I am one of those people who wash and reuse refrigerator storage bags), I hate-hate-hate rehydrating & wedging the stuff.  The worst are the ^10 clays I have that I have not used fast enough and are now solid blocks.  No, wait, the worst is processing all of those containers of trimmings and greenware breakage.  The upside is enjoying  the hot & sour soup  = free containers.  

 Most favorite is opening the kiln and finding a great (if I do say so myself) heavy solid porcelain bowl, in Palladium with unglazed incising and a stamped center with a nice blue rutile wash.  When I unload the kiln, if I get a few dynamite pieces and half of the rest of the load is dreck, I am still happy-happy.  

9/13 Edit to the previous edit (deleted-was about my pics being too big) ---fixed the pics--thanks RonSa

 

 

20170912_171514--.jpg

20170912_171534--.jpg

20170912_171606--.jpg

Edited by LeeU

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Judith B    52

Ah yes, reclaiming clay. I really hope when I get my own studio I manage at some point to have a pug mill, that would make it so much easier! 

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RonSa    188

 

FWIW When I have trimmings like that I just dump the throwing water into the container and siphon off the excess water the following day. After a couple of days I throw the clay onto a 12" plaster wedging bat and in a couple of hours I start wedging it. For me its a whole lot easier to 3# to 5# every couple of days then waiting for 50# of clay needing to be recycled.

I'm sure this would be different if I was selling on an on going basis, then I would probably just toss the trimmings.

 

1 hour ago, LeeU said:

I have no idea why these pics came out so huge or how to change them

In the edit box just double click on the image and a new window pops up with a few options, one of which is to resize the image

 

 

Edited by RonSa

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Mark C.    1,797

I'm least fond of the paperwork side of the business-getting it all down on the books and ready for my accountant.Tracking  and paying sales tax for my state-royal pain

second is booking hotels. I used to spend two months away now it's down to 15-16 days for 3 shows

Glazing and firing is what I like best-I'm a fire potter not a mudder like most.

second is a tie  between  selling  pots to 250 people a day that are very happy to get the work

and the feeling I have leaving a city in my van  after a great show with large bag of money and feeling I have the tiger by the tail.I cannot express that great feeling of being king until daily life kicks me in the head.

 

Edited by Mark C.

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Marcia Selsor    1,301

least favorite thing is paperwork, but always happy when it is done.

favorite thing is experimenting on color, glazes or clay, terra sigs. Once I get an idea for a specific direction I want to explore, then I set up tests. Also love teaching and getting results from students. 

 

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