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Diana Ferreira

Fake Horsehair Raku

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hi guys,

I need to mimic a horsehair raku look on functional ware (stoneware).  I know I have read about someone somewhere that were doing it, and cannot find it anywhere!  Is there anyone that can help me with a link, or advice?

thanks!

Diana

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Couldn't you fire the wares to vitrification temperatures, with your standard glaze, on the inside, leaving the outside bare, then refire lower, using the horsehair technique, on the outside?

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I never glaze the outside of my work, Benzine.  This will have to be done on the 'functional' inside of the work.  I could tell the customer 'sorry, no can do'  But I think it would look very good on the design.  This is a restaurant order, and quite substantial amount of work, there is no way that I could hand paint fine lines, etc.  And obviously the work need to be foodsafe.

I am quite happy to fire something three times, if I could get the effect!  

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It might be worth trying to fire to bisk,do the horsehair then fire a second time to glaze with an interior fuctional glaze. You might need to switch to a cone 3-5 clay body. I think the unglazed exterior will be rougher than you might want but buffing it after glaze  firing with compound that won't take the carbon off might work.

Also you might try using honey or molasses drizzeled on with a thin stick instead of horsehair to give more carbon into the exterior.

I'm just brainstorming.

Wyndham

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ooh Wyndham, my unglazed exterior is like satin.  (unlike my hands!)  I really work my pieces before and after a bisque firing to get it smooth.  

 

What does the honey/molasses do?  Do you apply it before or after the glaze?  Normally I only work with a black clay body, but for this client I am using a stoneware white that I will stain to achieve different hues, and would like to use my standard commercial clear glaze that is foodsafe.

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photo (3)

 Here is an image that I have found - NOT MY OWN WORK!!!  This looks like a stain rubbed into a crackle glaze.  This would also be an option to do.

 

But obviously I cannot use a crackle glaze, as it is not foodsafe ...

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Diane,

 

I have a faint memory of a technique to produce a sealed and stained crackle. AFAIKR it used a

glaze which crackled when under-fired, but didn't when fired fully. Perhaps because of inadequate

alumina solubility in the under-fired case.

 

So: under-fire; rub in stain; refire to maturity.

 

Sorry no details, just a vague memory.

 

Regards, Peter

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Peter, that rings a bell in my head too!  

Slight problem is that my favourite clear glaze has such a wide range.  I will test it at 1100C and see if I can make it crackle.  (this glaze performs perfectly for me at 1160C and my one friend uses it at 1240C.

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The horsehair reduces to carbon, honey, molasses or other organics reduce to carbon when applied to a hot pot just like horsehair..

When a pot goes much above the cone 06 level the smooth surface can start to loose some of the smoothness, possibly because the clay is also is shrinking and the increase of temp. This is way I think a lower temp maturing body may help hold some of the carbon from the organics.

It's still going to be a 2 firing process, green to bisk then carbonized(horsehair), let it cool.

Interior glaze and fired to the maturing temp of the clay/glaze.

You need to test ,as  most of us have(myself) is just a guess to start with, not a definitive solution.

First test I would make is to fire an unglazed exterior/glazed interior just see what the clay looks like because you need to see what that looks like. Then try some ideas.

Wyndham

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this may sound stupid but there is a potter, mckenzie smith, in florida who covers an area of a raw pot with wax, draws through the wax into the clay and fills the tiny, thin line with black glaze.  these lines are hair thin. firing once to remove the wax leaves the pot clean to accept the clear glaze.   

 

could this work for you?  wiggly lines could look like horsehair.

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this may sound stupid but there is a potter, mckenzie smith, in florida who covers an area of a raw pot with wax, draws through the wax into the clay and fills the tiny, thin line with black glaze.  these lines are hair thin. firing once to remove the wax leaves the pot clean to accept the clear glaze.   

 

could this work for you?  wiggly lines could look like horsehair.

Brian Persha use to draw on his pots using that technique back in he 1970. He had a studio in Red Lodge, Montana.

it is a very interesting and precise technique.

 

Marcia

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thanks everyone!  I personally think Oldlady is a genius, and should be on this forum 24/7.  Your advice is logical and brilliant.  

 

I cannot do real horsehair.  Do not have the equipment, and is not prepared to fire lower than 1200C for hospitality ware.  

 

Well, back to the salt mines for me.  got to make new masters for a customer and pack a 15 cf kiln.  Glazed last night and early this morning.  A happy and productive day to all!

Diana

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Diana,

 

Found a ref on sealed and stained crackle.

http://www.potters.org/subject14181.htm/

 

In particular:

Paulo Correia on wed 27 may 98

Jean,

Your friend may be right if the the "crackle is crazing" and wrong if the
"crazing is crackle".
Wile crazing represents one of the major glazing defects of a finished pot,
a fine network of hairline cracks produces a very decorative effect.
The Japanese potters use china ink to make the crackles more pronounced,
and another method is to use stain rubbed to reveal the crackles and then
refiring the pot. These methods and other variations are done with a glaze
that has an different shrinkage rate than the body.
Usually in stoneware , if we want to do *crackle ware* then we under fire
by 80-100C a normal glaze that matches the shrinkage rate of the body thus
producing crackles by incorrect firing that are then stained and then the
pot is refired at the correct temperature. This way we have a beautiful
Crackle Ware, with a Food Safe Glaze With NO CRACKS. This is the reason why
your friend Deborah Randolph can be right or wrong, only seeing the pots,
or knowing if they use the under firing technique...
About the stoneware temperature, we do have that low temperature stoneware,
and porcelain too.And even lower temperature believe me.

For more information on the subject there is a very good book;

Ceramic Techniques - Pravoslav Rada - 1989 by The Hamlyn Publishing Group -
Michelin House, 81 Fulham Road, London SW3 6RB - ISBN 0-600-56154-2
------------------------------------------------------------
Paulo Correia - Cerbmica Decorativa, Lda.
Portugal
P.Correia-Ceramica@ip.pt

 

Regards, Peter

 

PS It occurs to me that this might be more trouble than it's worth for commercial

functional work, as you may have to keep defending the the safety of the process.

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In regards to doing multiple firings (one for the hair, one for the glaze), it won't work. If you fire hot enough to vitrify the clay for durability/sanitation first, the clay will not take in the carbon during the hair process. It has to be porous. And the pot will likely crack due to thermal shock. If you do the hair process first then glaze over it, the carbon will burn out during the glaze firing. There is no way to combine the low fire horsehair process and a high fire for vitrification.

 

The stained crackle glaze is beautiful, but it doesn't look at all like horsehair. I think some method of drawing the hair patterns is the way to go.

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Neil, what about mixing a black stain & some satin glaze mixed with something like molasses, drizzel it on a cold bisk pot then either spraying or dipping a thin satin matt clear cone 6 on the outside and the regular interior linner glaze inside, fire to cone 6.

I was trying to think of a way to apply a fake horsehair style where the stain would react with the glaze but not peel off.

Just thinking out loud

Wyndham

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Just a thought... What if you took a few strands of horse hair (or maybe something more absorbent, like a thin cotton twine?) and dipped them in something (REO, Manganese black stain, underglaze, etc)...

 

Heat up your pots, then apply the horsehair like normal.

 

The hair would curl when it contacted the hot vessel like it normally does, but (hopefully?) would leave some of the absorbed stain behind in addition to the carbon.

 

Then glaze over it with a clear at normal vitrification temperature?

 

You could even test this at the tail end of a bisque firing (with a sturdy enough piece)... I'd just say an outdoor kiln and some raku tongs would probably be a good idea.

 

(also just thinking out loud here)

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For me, part of the beauty of horse hair pots is the burnished, unglazed surface. I don't think you'll match that with any glaze. I think working with stains on raw clay would be the way to go. I'm betting a talented airbrush artist could make it look nearly identical- deep black lines with the tiniest bit of haze/fuming around them, maybe even some large blushes to mimic low fire fuming.....

angrybarkeep likes this

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For me, part of the beauty of horse hair pots is the burnished, unglazed surface. I don't think you'll match that with any glaze. I think working with stains on raw clay would be the way to go. I'm betting a talented airbrush artist could make it look nearly identical- deep black lines with the tiniest bit of haze/fuming around them, maybe even some large blushes to mimic low fire fuming.....

What about applying a black underglaze to a wet bisque surface, to create some bleeding?  Would that look similar enough?

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This should be a challenge. Everyone pick a path and meet back here at some time or whenever something comes out of the kiln.No right no wrong, maybe uuglee, who knows.

I have acone 6 coming up in a week or so. let you know what gives.

Wyndham

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For me, part of the beauty of horse hair pots is the burnished, unglazed surface. I don't think you'll match that with any glaze. I think working with stains on raw clay would be the way to go. I'm betting a talented airbrush artist could make it look nearly identical- deep black lines with the tiniest bit of haze/fuming around them, maybe even some large blushes to mimic low fire fuming.....

What about applying a black underglaze to a wet bisque surface, to create some bleeding?  Would that look similar enough?

 

 

Possibly. Definitely worth a try, but I'm thinking it will probably bleed too much or not at all, and be very hard to control which way it goes. I also think brushing will be difficult to get the same solid black line. Trailing with an super fine tip might be more convincing.

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Pulling an old thread forward because I was brainstorming on doing some feather pots and would like to have some colors too, not just white, and would also like to be able to use them with water.  Saw this thread so now I'm wondering if any of the folks tried the techniques that were discussed and what happened.

 

I have treated the interior and the bottom of barrel fired pots with tile and grout sealant and when I fill them with water and set them on paper towels they seem to be water tight.  Yet I don't see anyone selling these porous wares as anything but decorative, so I figure there is a reason.

 

What I want to do is use commercial stains to add some color in various ways to feather and maybe some horsehair pots.  Anybody use any hair other then horsehair and gotten cool results?  Any particular feathers work better than others?  Anybody use commercial stains to good effect?

 

 What about using low fire clay and firing to bisque, then low fire glaze to the interior, fire that, then do the horse hair/feather process.  Might that work?

 

 

 

I promise to share any cool results I manage to achieve although I don't have high expectations at this point.  I'm still at the brainstorming stage.

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this may sound stupid but there is a potter, mckenzie smith, in florida who covers an area of a raw pot with wax, draws through the wax into the clay and fills the tiny, thin line with black glaze. these lines are hair thin. firing once to remove the wax leaves the pot clean to accept the clear glaze.

 

could this work for you? wiggly lines could look like horsehair.

Brian Persha use to draw on his pots using that technique back in he 1970. He had a studio in Red Lodge, Montana.

it is a very interesting and precise technique.

Marcia

on pg 109-110 of Ash Glazes by Robert Tichane, a technique is described to collect rinse water from ash. The soln would contain potassium carbonate, NaCl and trace amounts of potassium phosphate and sulfate.

 

If a ware were sprayed with a light coat of this solution, then fired to cone 8, it would have a light varnished effect with a slightly glossy surface.

 

With that in mind, I propose to modify what oldlady and marcia suggested.

 

1. Spray the outside of bone dry ware with ash rinse solution, as above.

2. Apply wax over the spray.

3. Draw lines, feather design as desired.

4. Apply mason stain, underglaze, or oxides into the etched areas. Wipe off the extra.

5. Glaze the inside of the ware with a food safe liner.

6. Slow single fire to vetrification.

 

The resulting ware should have varnished surface, black design from the etching, and a food safe interior.

 

 

I have not done this before. It might just work.

 

Any thoughts?

 

Jed

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