Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
docweathers

What's Wrong With Big-Runney Feet?

Recommended Posts

I tried some oil spot glazes. I was advised to just keep pouring it on thicker and thicker.  The vertical surfaces of my pot were very nice but a good portion of the glaze slid off onto my kiln shelf making a very organic foot at some points an inch and a half wide.

 

At first it was "ah my what a mess. How am I going to chip or grind this stuff off." Then I began to look at the color, shape and patterns. They are really very pretty but against the rules.

 

The rules seem to say that the upper part of a pot can be twisted, lumpy, bumpy, organic, distorted etc. but the bottom always needs to be a neat little round circle with a quarter inch clay showing.

 

Why?

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah, but there must be a rule or the like if everyone is uniformly abiding by the standard. :)  I have never seen one pot displayed that has a big runny mass around the foot. I can't be the only one who has gotten one of these. Maybe, I'm just the only one who took a close look at it before they grounded it off, broke it off or threw it in the trash barrel. What kind of a artist/craftsman could you be if you make such a mess.?

 

My point is, I wonder how these implicit standards impact our artistic judgment.

 

I actually have three of these things that I really like. I am going to find more ways of taking advantage of this Bigfoot mess. :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doc,

 

You need to look at more woodfired anagama youhen and haikaburi works.... and at more pots in Japan.

 

As a woodfirer... I live by the grinder.

 

That being said... the character of the foot area has to resonate with the character of the rest of the piece.  And as was said...... not cause personal injury .

 

best,

 

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

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really like the double hanging knob pot. I have two bench grinders. I've never been hesitant to use them, until now.

 

I've attached a couple of pictures of the pots I'm talking about that have really serious big runny feet.  Please excuse the primitive photography but I'm so new at pottery, I haven't put together a good glare free photo box yet. From these photos, it is hard to see the patterning of the feet and how it works with the pot.

 

Thank goodness I use tons of kiln wash on my shelves. :rolleyes:

 

 

post-6406-0-89410500-1383278352_thumb.jpg

post-6406-0-22144400-1383278367_thumb.jpg

post-6406-0-89410500-1383278352_thumb.jpg

post-6406-0-22144400-1383278367_thumb.jpg

Patsu likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always liked frozen drips. I have seen many controlled to be higher up on the pot. I think your main concern is that they should not have sharp edges that could cause injury....for which you are liable.

Take a file or some "wet" emery paper and sand any dangerous edges and spare yourself a lawsuit.

Meanwhile, more control to place suspended drips above the foot might save you a lot of work.You really don't want a glaze pool to chip in someone's hand.

 

 

Marcia

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I recently finished a multi-sectioned vase for a friend.  I used a glaze combination, that I hadn't really tried before, but guessed would turn out well. 

It did indeed look nice, but the two layered, ran more than I anticipated.  I did have the piece stilted, so I had some frozen drips on the bottom. 

So, they become the new foot/ feet for the piece.  It sat pretty level despite this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In Art there are no rules.

There are guidelines yes (but you don't have to follow them), and there is bad taste, there is pretention, there is rubbish etc, but no rules. Some things just break all the rules but the way it hangs together is just beautiful or meaningful. Do not let pedantic people who are set on rules cramp your creativity.

 

For craft things are a bit different, especially if you work within a tradition. If you make pots in a certain cultural style or tradition then you have to follow the customary rules (most of the time).

Patsu likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This discussion reminds me of some things that Michael Palin said in one of his food books when discussing natural, whole Earth, organic foods. He calls them "story foods" because it is the story on the bottle and the picture of idyllic farm scenes on the front that makes them sell. He went looking for the maw and maw farm pictured on the label  and found industrial scale farming. So the manufacturer was well aware of the utility of this myth.

 

So maybe you can have any kind of foot that you can conjure a great story for. "it's an ancient Russian technique that requires you to coat the shelves with ground-up pigs ears and make your glazes with juice from sauerkraut rather than water. But the cabbage has to be from the Ukraine and grown in nuclear waste". <_<

ShellS likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They look great Doc. Clean the bottom edges up with a Dremal and put them out for sale. If the slumped glass people can do it , why not potters??

 

If worse comes to worse, you can use them in one of your metal pieces.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To grind the pot bottom of these pods, the I use my el Cheapo ($20)   bottom grinder. Then I have an electric skillet with a quarter inch of paraffin in it that I get very hot and give the bottom a quick dunk. Then wipe it off with the rag. Between the grinder, which does a pretty good job and the paraffin on the bottom of the pot has a scratch free surface.

 

I actually use this on all of my pots. It is a lot easier than felting and seem to do a very good job

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doc,  I like the pots. I actually own a runny, drippy pot of john Britt.  He told me that if a drip gets broken off he will refire enough for the sharp edge to smooth back out. Not sure how but he would be glad to tell you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Back in the day, Harding Black had the same issue with heavily glazed pots running. Harding made biskets of fireclay a bit wider than the pot and about 1 in thick, to catch the drips. IFB cut into slabs works very well. Coat the slabs with kiln wash and get ready to grind.

I use an edge grinder from HF with a diamond wheel, goes rather quickly and it saves the shelves.

Wyndham

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Insulating Fire Brick IFB

Herbert Sanders also used that method for crystalline glazes which run notoriously as part of the process.These were cut to fit the pot which was bisque fired to ^10 and sprayed with glazes using a gum solution.

BTW the gum solution works well for when you accidentally over fire bisque.

Marcia

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Never really ventured into this side of the forum but what a lovely mistake  :) I would just keep it to admire.

 

I thought the "standard foot" was mostly used to lift the form of the pot from the surface, or at least that is what I use it for. Gives the shape a little bit of breathing space (and removes some of my heavy throwing at the bottom).

 

 

I really like the double hanging knob pot. I have two bench grinders. I've never been hesitant to use them, until now.

 

I've attached a couple of pictures of the pots I'm talking about that have really serious big runny feet.  Please excuse the primitive photography but I'm so new at pottery, I haven't put together a good glare free photo box yet. From these photos, it is hard to see the patterning of the feet and how it works with the pot.

 

Thank goodness I use tons of kiln wash on my shelves.  :rolleyes:

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm definitely going to keep the big-runney feet on these pots. This is the result of overenthusiastic application of a oil spot glazes. I was told to make the pot really thin so that when I just kept piling on more and more glaze the whole thing wouldn't end up to thick. I guess on more vertical forms, one doesn't have to worry about the glaze getting too thick. Rather one just has to make sure you have enough kiln wash on your shelves.

 

Maybe with a little thought, big fat feet could be turned into a more guided and artistic process.

sketter likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doc you got to the point I would have mentioned. It comes down to intent and expectation. As a craftsperson and artist we make decisions to get us to a end goal visually and functionally. We can choose paths that leave some surprise, like the wood firing mentioned earlier. We have expectation of runs, stuck wadding and crusty bits. We may do things to encourage those. Your original intent for those pieces did not include the loss of control that contributed to a wide puddle of glaze for a foot. It was a accident and therefore a loss that gives an opportunity for reflection, growth or dismissal of the pieces. Just as I would not be happy with shiny black oilspot glazes coming out of my wood kiln. It may give me a chance for exploration but the shiny black pots would be failures. It all comes down to intent and expectation. 

Marcia Selsor likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tim

 

I like the way you formulated the idea.

 

The other part I was driving at, which some people obviously did not get, is that even though we think of ourselves as creative, unrestricted opportunists, there are implicit rules that are so automatic that we don't even notice them, like the bottom of the pot needing to be a neat little round circle with a quarter inch of raw clay showing. Most people don't even think about but it, they just do the rule. when the rule is broken the pot is bad.

 

I suspect there are a lot more of these rules that need to be uncovered.

 

By the way, I've been a fan of yours for a long time. My favorites are those brass colored pots that look like old-time workshop tools, oil cans etc. They look so real and funky that if you put one on my welding bench, I might automatically try to use it.

 

Larry

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Larry,

 

So much of what lurks in our pottery subconscious is left over from those beginner lessons. There is so much information when explaining how to do all the steps to making competent pottery, that often why we do the steps is forgotten or eliminated. I am having my more advanced students this session making historical reproductions. They are to replicate a piece that originates in a cultural point where there is little outside influence. In doing this I hope to have them find the cultural, functional and production reasons for each attribute of the two pots they choose. To further the thought process I am including a bonus assignment of mixing the two pots and making a "pot baby"

 

After thinking about your last post we will have a conversation about many more "whys" about many more parts.

 

Thanks again Larry

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tim

I like the way that you are prompting your students creativity with an interesting assignment that has no right answer. Are you offer any sort of marriage ceremony for the first two pots so that you do not have an illegitimate baby pot :mellow: ?

 

Unstated rules are usually buried in automatic habit patterns, which are largely invisible to us until they are frustrated... you can't get from here to there doing that.

 

Larry

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×