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Celia UK

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Everything posted by Celia UK

  1. I don't think you refire after ink Andrea, it just seeps into the crackles and shows it up more, though your photo doesn't show as a crackle glaze to me. I love these muted colours with the White - what glaze(s) have you used?
  2. Think I'll train my youngest Grand Daughter (almost 2 years old). I've started with vocabulary - when she asks "what's there?", pointing to the door to the bedroom that's my studio - "Grandma's special room" ("Na'ma's room"). Why didn't I just say 'studio'? That's because it always feels a bit pretentious when I call it that, given my stage of learning! However, thinking about it, I love that description because that's how I feel about it, it is special (for a 2 year old swop special for 'dangerous'). She's nailed "Na'ma's pots" when scrolling through photos on my phone - looking for videos of herself (she's obsessed by these!?). We've had a look round, with her in my arms (daren't put her down to walk! If you've had experience of a not quite 2 year old, you'll get this). I can see her taking it all in ..... After a short while she's staring wide-eyed at the tools on my wheel - one word came back at me - "Dirty" - haven't found anything in the training books about how to develop this into a love of cleaning - any tips Benzine? Once I can face the mess she'll get into, I'll get her into clay (PlayDoh at the kitchen table is as far as we've got). Hopefully she'll have a little creative streak in her and I can look forward to shared studio time in the years to come!
  3. Joel, with your growing electrical and computer programming expertise I'd have thought you're half way to being able to develop a cleaning robot yourself - just consider it to be another part of your early career as a ceramic artist.
  4. Thanks Mark - the U.S. Wiki link was also an interesting read. So this would be the usual arrangement with galleries, for example, whereby they take a %age of the sale price? And wholesale - you sell your wares to the outlet and they sell them on? This isn't relevant to my own situation, but interesting nonetheless. What would you say are the pros and cons of these two strategies?
  5. Sorry to show my ignorance here - or perhaps it's a language issue, but what do you mean by 'consignment' in the context of pottery sales Mark?
  6. I share your pain Andrea. Glazing is my downfall too. Done the scraping, starting again thing many times. Worse still just crossed my fingers and been totally disappointed after the firing! All I want is to find/develop 3-4 reliable glazes that I can have sitting there in buckets - knowing that all they need is a quick stir and then go! When dipped the glaze will cover my pieces smoothly with no drips or runs. Any bare spots can be touched up without a problem and the pots can be easily handled thereafter. I'll press the buttons for my preset glaze program and when I open the kiln 24 hours later, I'll be greeted by an array of evenly glazed, beautifully coloured, shiny pots - no thick / thin spots, no crawling, no pinholes, no runs on the shelves. I'll be as excited as I am when I open a bisque firing. (....she woke up and it was all a dream....!) I discovered a most forgiving low fire transparent that behaves just as described above, which was designed I suspect, for hobbyists, inexpert potters, or even those 'decorate your own plate' places that then glaze & fire for you. I tracked it back to an Italian company, and did once find a UK supplier, so when mine runs out I could replenish it, albeit expensively. What stops me doing this, and seeing if the same company also makes a mid-fire transparent, is the fact that over time and by various means, I have acquired various glazes, including this one, inexpensively - school/ college closing, potters retiring etc. and I'm loathe to waste things. I therefore spend /waste time and energy using a mishmash of glazes, whose ingredients I don't know (so can't 'tweak' if things go wrong) and could never replicate them if they turn out brilliantly. I have done test tiles, but the reality of using some of them on a pot doesn't always match the test. Also, I'm still experimenting with different clays, which adds another variable into the equation. If I wanted to save my sanity and shed fewer tears, I'd dump all the tubs, small buckets, large buckets of 'stuff' I've accumulated over the past 3 years and start over. In fact, now I've written that down, the idea is most appealing!!!! I'm also thinking of looking up the 100% reliable Italian glaze supplier - see what this forum does for a person! I've rambled on to no good purpose, other than to offer sympathy and air my own angst, but hey ho that's not always a bad thing. Good luck!
  7. Nancy - I can't contribute anything about pricing your work, making a living etc. as I'm only a hobby potter. I am a retired teacher with a reasonable pension and to be fair we don't have to worry about medical insurance here in the UK, so my experience may have no bearing on your situation BUT, for what it's worth - it costs much less to live in retirement than you may anticipate. When I looked at what my money was going on, post retirement, the biggest chunk is on 'extras' rather than essentials. You can't beat doing what makes you happy and getting away from the stresses of teaching has a lot to be said for itself! Good luck!
  8. Really no expert on this at all but here's my few pennyworth - my electric kiln seems to over fire too and I'll be trying to work this out next firing! Your 10 minute soak will add to the heatwork and I don't think it's necessary at all for bisque firing. Probably not necessary either for straightforward brush on glazes, but I may be wrong there. Your firing schedules look ok to me - Google ' Clayman Firing Schedules' and you'll see that Stafford Instruments suggest these. Not v different to what you're doing. Bisque firing upside down is definitely worth a try. Is it totally dry before the bisque? Not sure if this could cause slumping, but it's a thought... Why not try a white earthenware? I've never had slumping like this and I make pieces with lots cut out. Pinholes - could your bisque have been a bit dusty? Give it a wipe over before glazing. Is the glaze a bit thick? My inexpert thoughts! I really sympathise as I get some lovely bisqued pieces and glazing is where it tends to go wrong - so dispiriting, especially when you don't really know where to start changing things! I'm still in this position after 3 years - a lot still feels like trial & error!
  9. Thanks Rae - will try that. I'm not averse to a bit of trial and error, but recording what I do will be essential. I don't know about you, but I always think I'll remember - e.g. what that little container has in it (underglaze/slip/clay/earthenware/stoneware etc.) or the order of work I did for a test piece - few days later, can I remember ??? Rarely! It's an age thing
  10. I forgot to 'follow' is thread when I posted my question - have just picked it up again. All very logical responses, but matching the shrinkage rates and cones of both clays assumes these are all known factors! Need to do some research here - especially as the bag of porcelain was a 'freebie'. Many thanks for all the above info!
  11. Ann - I do usually give them a stir but can't swear I did so with the black on this occasion. One more thing to consider. Thanks Kangarabbit - a very comprehensive post! Sounds as if you've tried the lot! I have to agree that your expensive options seem to have given the best results. I love the decoration style. Did you use resist for the third one? The Sneyd stain there looks great. I haven't got back into the studi since Christmas and New Year yet - perhaps today's the day? Babs - I'm going to do a couple of tests with the underglazes I've got and also try making a small amount myself using your recipe. (have to check my 'ingredients' box for the frit!) Min - your Spectrum black looks good - have made a note of that one. Thanks all - onward and upward!
  12. Thanks Babs - so if I'm working from small, 2oz pots of underglaze, how much would I add? And what! I do have various glaze ingredients (mostly bought as job lots from retiring potters, so I'm not altogether au fait with what they all do!) so am sure frits are among them. If I added some to an underglaze and it wasn't actually needed, what would happen - might it make it too runny! Would you have any idea why a tiny amount of tangerine stain added to yellow u/g caused the glaze to bubble up on top? I just don't know enough about the chemistry here?
  13. Quite a tall order for a ceramic artist Joel - got any plans?
  14. anyone else in England? near Lincolnshire ?[/font][/color] I'm in St Ives Cambridgeshire - not far away (next door in U.S. or Canadian terms!!). I certainly understand you wanting to decide what to make - for 3 years I've been saying I'm just playing with ideas and trying things out. I really need to make a concerted effort to develop a few ideas and decide on the clay to work with. I AM going to do a few sessions on glaze mixing and that will help, I'm sure. If I don't get my finger out, I'll still be 'playing' this time next year. Making a profit isn't one of my aims, but to submit pieces for a selling exhibition would be a good step forwards!
  15. I do sympathise with you as I had a similar issue just before Christmas. I used the amaco underglazes on Earthstone ES 5 clay and bisqued to 1000oC. Everything looked fine. Photo 1. I then dip glazed in transparent, leadless glaze and fired to 1200oC (digital program). Cones 3,4,5 were all completely over (I'm using cones to see what the kiln is actually doing cone-wise) and the cone 6 minibar in the sitter was almost at 90o, I estimate the kiln achieved cone 6 or possibly a bit more. The interior had a base layer of white underglaze (applied at leather hard stage), when this was dry I applied all the paper triangles to create the pattern, and then applied coloured underglazes on top. (2/3 coats of thinned underglaze, for a solid effect, as per the instructions.) The white base areas are ok - just a few pinholes that I could live with. But over the black, orange, red etc. the glaze is milky, with the black also being rough to the touch. On a small area of yellow, to which I had added a tiny amount of tangerine stain to change the tone, the glaze has crawled into a bubbly clump. Photo 2. The outside was not underglazed with the base white - just a few small areas of coloured triangles. The glaze over the clay is as I expect - a nice gloss. One small area of pattern on the outside isn't as bad as the rest of the bowl - the colours show through an almost clear glaze (tiny bit milky). Photo 3. Other pieces dipped in the same glaze were fine, so I guess the firing temperature was ok? Looking closely at the bowl, I'd guess the glaze on the outside is generally too thick - even though this really was a quick dip in a thinned out glaze (so I thought ). Would that account for the milkiness? Why would the stain addition on the yellow triangles make such a difference to how it accepted the glaze? Just how thin should it be? I've thinned down my bucket significantly following advice. As a bit of a generalisation I would say my experience is that underglazes don't seem to be as 'absorbent' to glaze as the clay - as I've had glaze crawl over it in the past - is that possible? Does it just need much thinner glaze over? Any further thoughts/advice so that I don't make the same mistake again? Many thanks in anticipation and Happy New Year to you all! Celia
  16. I don't do colanders but my 'shell' bowls have areas with holes. I cut them with hole cutters at the leather hard stage too. I've also experienced cracking between them, on occasions. I think it's the thinness of the remaining clay in these areas as opposed to the more solid, unpierced surrounding areas - different drying rates and tension. Whatever you can do to slow / equalise the drying rate could help. How about a small wad of cling film (think you call it something else over there - the thin, off-the-roll plastic sandwich/food wrap), rolled and put through each hole and the whole area covered in plastic, and the whole bowl loosely wrapped? My very fragile pieces with thin clay additions that also crack in the same way, I put into a damp box to even out for about a week, before removing and loosely wrapping the thinner parts as above.
  17. Yet another thing to try! Got loads of lace, so plenty to work with.Thanks Old Lady.
  18. Ah yes Babs - a good reminder for me. I usually go higher than the minimum of the glaze range, so this should cover things.
  19. Seems like your kiln shouldn't be having trouble coming up to cone 05 at 200C/hr. Is this something new with this run? I haven't regularly been in the habit of setting up cone packs, so have always relied on the digital controller. If set to 1000oC and it switches off after an appropriate time without throwing up an error message, I've assumed it got to 1000oC. Possibly it's the 'heat work' business? Everything has a nice ring to it!
  20. White underglaze all over then Small paper triangles cut out, dampened and laid in position as resist. Black underglaze and the other colours painted in triangular spaces left. Carefully lifted paper triangles and a little tidying up when dry. Very satisfying if you like this sort of fiddling!!
  21. Hi Babs. That's all very reassuring! I hadn't looked back at my cone chart to check the correlation, but expected some movement on the 05 cone at least! I was bisquing to 1000oC and do have a controller and sitter. The sitter is just a back up, as the timer override no longer works. It's belt and braces really - and at least gives me more info on how the kiln is firing. Thanks for your comments on my pieces - it's the next stage that will determine the final outcome. Hopefully the black & white triangles one will be successful as it's a present for a friend who has a chair upholstered in fabric of this pattern!
  22. Good morning all! Just opened my small electric kiln after a bisque firing. It was programmed - 100oC per hr to 600oC then 200oC per hour to 1000oC. I had 03 04 05 cones in a pack (really needed 04-05-06 but had this one to hand) on the bottom shelf and an 04 mini bar in the kiln sitter. The temperature was rising as expected early on, but slowed down at the upper end, so overall took about 10 hrs. No error message on the programmer. The work appears bisqued, but none of the cones, nor the minibar have changed in the slightest! Some small test pieces were glazed (Once fire) on one 1/2 with a low fire transparent (matures at 06-05) which looks fine. Any suggestions as to what is happening here? Is there anything I need to consider when glazing these pieces - all will be transparent, shiny glaze.
  23. So can any slip be used on any clay, or is this a really tricky thing depending on expansion rates etc? Does the slip need to be chemically formulated or will throwing slip do? For example - I have a bag of porcelain clay (powder), could I add water to make slip and apply it to a white stoneware and/or earthenware body, to get the whiteness and smoothness of porcelain. Does the addition if slip in this way, change the firing temperature of the piece - at the bisque stage and at glaze stage?
  24. Hmm...never thought of it that way round Nancy, with the high spots coloured, low spots natural clay. Something else to ponder, though as I usually do the underglaze on these when bone dry, to preserve the texture, I'd have to develop a v light touch to prevent it pulling down from the top surface. We're taliking no more than 1/8" thickness, which makes it v absorbent!
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