Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Source For Brown Raku Clay


  • Please log in to reply
11 replies to this topic

#1 Isculpt

Isculpt

    Inexperienced but eager

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 398 posts
  • LocationSouth Carolina

Posted 17 July 2014 - 04:55 PM

I haven't been able to find brown raku clay anywhere locally in the Carolinas or even online, but a friend in South Dakota tells me that she bought some from a school which had placed a large order.  Does anyone know of a source for moist brown raku clay?  Or could I used a brown stoneware with lots of coarse grog and have the same benefits of raku clay?

Jayne



#2 Tyler Miller

Tyler Miller

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 344 posts
  • LocationOntario, Canada

Posted 17 July 2014 - 07:02 PM

I've been told by a number of people that you can get away with using most clay bodies in raku, with a few exceptions, mainly white stoneware, mid-fire porcelain, and high iron bodies.  Bernard Leach in "A Potter's Book" says you can get away with a red or buff body for raku.  I've gotten away with using coarse terracotta once (and once only), but generally I stick with white.

 

I would imagine the brown raku clay was just coarsely grogged brown sculptural stoneware anyway.  Give it a test with safety glasses and welding sleeves?



#3 Chris Campbell

Chris Campbell

    clay stained since 1988

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,289 posts
  • LocationRaleigh, NC

Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:43 AM

I would agree with Tyler ... Any groggy clay body can be raku fired ... You don't have to limit yourself to something called raku clay. Often times clay with higher firing ranges do a great job because at low temps they are very open ... Lots of neat places for color to happen.

Chris Campbell
Contemporary Fine Colored Porcelain
http://www.ccpottery.com/

https://www.facebook...88317932?ref=hl

TRY ...   FAIL ...  LEARN ...  REPEAT


#4 Marcia Selsor

Marcia Selsor

    Professor Emerita, Montana State University-Billings

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4,069 posts
  • Locationwhere Texas, Matamoros, Rio Grande and Gulf of Mexico come together.

Posted 18 July 2014 - 10:51 AM

I think Tyler and Chris are right on. The only thing I have to wonder about is are you planning to reduce. Then you would get black.

The color of an oxidized body (air cooled and not reduced) fired may come out a bit as something unexpected. For example, a stoneware body that appears picks in an electric fired bisque with look white or beige when air cooled in  gas raku firing.

 

Marcia



#5 JLowes

JLowes

    Clay Doodler

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 234 posts
  • LocationAtlanta Georgia area

Posted 18 July 2014 - 11:33 AM

If you have a brown mid or high fire clay you like, then I would suggest wedging in some silica sand, if it is not already groggy, and trying a test.  I usually use raku clay for its known raku qualities, but I also use other stoneware and occasionally porcelain bodies.  I made some raku pigs and used a light brown firing cone 6 body.  I knew that it fires pink in bisque, so when I raku fired it with a clear crackle  got pink pigs.  Same thing with using a red mid-range stoneware to take advantage of the bare clay getting very dark in the reduction to contract with a white crackle.

 

It is all about knowing what the clay body can stand while going up and pulling to open air.  Some work fine, and others need help via addition of grog, or kyanite, wedged in.  Knowing the red/brown body will get really black when bare and reduced, or another clay will give pink when bisque fired, or that a porcelain clay with molochite wedged in does fine, will open up your possibilities.  Interest in raku indicates you are a curious person, so follow that curiosity and have fun while gaining knowledge.

 

John



#6 JBaymore

JBaymore

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,024 posts
  • LocationWilton, NH USA

Posted 18 July 2014 - 02:01 PM

First question.... why do you want brown? What is the objective?

 

best,

 

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


John Baymore
Immediate Past President; Potters Council
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

http://www.JohnBaymore.com

#7 Isculpt

Isculpt

    Inexperienced but eager

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 398 posts
  • LocationSouth Carolina

Posted 18 July 2014 - 02:55 PM

Lots of information to process!  John, I use raku clay because I occasionally choose to pit fire the work.  I like to have that option, and I don't always plan ahead on the finishing technique.  Too, I prefer not to have lots of different clays in the studio -- too easy for me to forget and fire a cone 2 clay to cone 6.  (Not happy results on that one!)  Further, I've found that I like working with raku clay more than any other.  It dries faster and it has more body than the earthenwares and stonewares I've used, so sculpting can proceed without lots of waiting around for parts to dry enough to support the next part.  The downside is that my Highwater raku fires white and sometimes it seems kind of sterile unless I do a lot of finishing.  I thought that a nice tan or light brown raku might give me the best of all possible worlds,

jayne



#8 JBaymore

JBaymore

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,024 posts
  • LocationWilton, NH USA

Posted 18 July 2014 - 05:17 PM

So what you are really looking for is a general studio body that can be fired in raku also.  Yes?

 

Confusing wording.

 

Get a stoneware... wedge in a lot of grog for raku.

 

best,

 

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


John Baymore
Immediate Past President; Potters Council
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

http://www.JohnBaymore.com

#9 Isculpt

Isculpt

    Inexperienced but eager

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 398 posts
  • LocationSouth Carolina

Posted 18 July 2014 - 08:47 PM

John, I wish that I could wedge clay, let alone wedge in a lot of grog!  After nearly 20 years as a professional woodcarver, followed by 10 years in residential cabinetry work, my wrists are very nearly useless.  After falling two years ago and breaking all the bones in the left wrist along with the bones in the forearm, just hefting 25-lb bags of clay takes a toll. In order to be able to work in clay, I have to use it straight out of the bag and when I want to reuse still-wet scraps, they go in the clay bag and I use my feet to smush it all together.  I don't think I can train my feet to wedge in grog....although I'll bet someone somewhere has figured out how!

Jayne



#10 JBaymore

JBaymore

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,024 posts
  • LocationWilton, NH USA

Posted 18 July 2014 - 09:20 PM

Sorry about the body stuff.

 

In Japan with the Koreans we wedged in TONS of chammote (grog) into clay ... with the feet. It is actually easy and fun.

 

maybe get a groggy commercial stoneware sculpture body.

 

best,

 

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


John Baymore
Immediate Past President; Potters Council
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

http://www.JohnBaymore.com

#11 Idaho Potter

Idaho Potter

    Learning all the time

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 400 posts
  • LocationBoise, Idaho

Posted 19 July 2014 - 05:40 PM

Jayne,

 

I, like you, prefer raku clay for sculpture because of its ability to stand up to sudden or severe temperature changes without falling apart.  If you like the smooth finish that it gives when producing anatomical sculpture, groggy sculptural clay may not give you that result.  I also use B-mix (no grog) for sculpture, but have found it doesn't like the sudden temp changes in raku firing.  Perhaps you could leave the work in the pit to cool (when doing pit firing) using any brown/tan sculptural or stoneware clay so it wouldn't have to survive thermal shock.

 

Are you also wanting to use this as a primary color for your sculptures of people?  If you find the right clay, this could ease some of your problems you've had with stain applicatons.

 

JLowes wrote that he got pink pigs from bisqued (pink?) with a clear crackle glaze.  My raku bisques to a pink color, but when raku fired with a clear crackle, the glazed areas are white.  Did I misunderstand the post?

 

Shirley



#12 Isculpt

Isculpt

    Inexperienced but eager

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 398 posts
  • LocationSouth Carolina

Posted 19 July 2014 - 10:23 PM

Thanks, SD, I'll check into the Riverside Grit from Highwater.  And John, since you say it's fun to wedge grit into clay with one's feet, I may try teaching these old dogs a new trick.  And Shirley, you reminded me that there is a stoneware clay that when underfired produces a beautiful Caucasian skin color.  Maybe I'll try wedging some grit into that clay -- using my feet, of course! 

 

Thanks, all !

Jayne

 

I just remembered that I have a bag of volcanic ash on hand.  How does that compare to grog as an additive to clay to enable it to withstand thermal shock?






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users