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Kohaku

Using slip trailing for vertical surfaces

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One of the things that I enjoy most in my work is surface decoration- particularly carved, simplified marine and wildlife forms. I'm been thinking of experimenting with slip trailing, though... and wanted a little advice before I head down the rabbit hole). A little context...

 

In Raku, I use the carved images to create a mosaic feel (multiple glazes, wax resist in the carvings.

 

IMG_1308_zpsb9c60163.jpg

 

I've tried for some time to adapt this style to high fire. The use of a high-iron wash allows for a 'wood grain' effect that I enjoy...

 

Wood_zpsd98b290f.png

 

However, the use of any covering glaze tends to mute the design (see below).

 

Octo_zps27e6ccbc.png

 

I've tried using black wax resist in the carvings, varying the specific gravity of my glazes... but even a glaze like the one below that tends to 'break' well still fills the carved lines too much.

 

Break_zps4e946db2.png

 

So- I was thinking of experimenting with slip trailing- in the hope that a raised design might shed a mobile glaze better, and highlight the designs more effectively. Before I start experimenting, however, I was wondering if it was even possible to make this work on vertical forms (like the mugs pictured above)? If so, any advice? How dry would the greenware need to be... and what would need to be the specific gravity (approximate) of the slip? Is this even a route worth exploring (especially in light of how complex some of my designs are)? I don't want the lines to lose their flow or look overly heavy...

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You want the slip as thick as you can, so it's less likely to drip. You may have to work on part of it, then let it set up before turning the pot. As for your carved work, a white body with a more transparent glaze would show the carving very well. Celadon, for example.

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You want the slip as thick as you can, so it's less likely to drip. You may have to work on part of it, then let it set up before turning the pot. As for your carved work, a white body with a more transparent glaze would show the carving very well. Celadon, for example.

 

 

How about the moisture content for the greenware itself? If it was bone dry (or close) I could see it 'setting' faster... but I'd worry that the lines would fracture rather than bonding well...

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It won't bond well on bone dry work. Slip is clay, so it must follows the same rules for joining clay to clay. If the pot is too dry the slip will fall off. If you deflocculate the slip, you can work on somewhat drier pots, like on the dry side of leather hard.

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It won't bond well on bone dry work. Slip is clay, so it must follows the same rules for joining clay to clay. If the pot is too dry the slip will fall off. If you deflocculate the slip, you can work on somewhat drier pots, like on the dry side of leather hard.

 

 

 

OK- thanks. Today's my 'play day' in the studio- I'm going to experiment with this. Whoop!

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