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Everything posted by Wyndham

  1. For a DIY, get a12" round plasti bat and cut an 8" sq out of the middle, notch one corner to get the bats out. Then go to home depot and have them cut a 8ft x 4ft hard on both sides 1/4 in Masonite board to 8 inch squares. They charge a few dollars for the cutting. You'll have all the bats you need for a long time. Do that again with 6 x6 in for mugs. Glue several, maybe 3, Masonite 12inch bats together and cut out the 8x8 in sq with a jig or scroll saw and make the plaster of hydrostone inserts on the cheap Wyndham
  2. Slip glazes can crawl or pop off in the firing. Using about half calcined (or more)and half raw in a slip glaze recipe will help eliminate that issue. Many slip glazes with Alberta or Albany are almost all clay. I try not to have more than 10% raw clay in may glazes with the balance calcined clay. For me 10% will keep most ingredients in suspension and not hard pan. Wyndham
  3. Saw a recent Nat Geo program that mentioned that in Sanskrit it mention the tower of Babel being made from burned bricks. I would guess the earlier pits for pit firing would have fused enough to create a fired lining for pit firing, if the clay were low enough temp, but that's just a guess I would think the Chinese were more likely to have fired brick before the middle east Wyndham
  4. Check the info on your clay. The mfg will post the amt of water absorption at the firing range the clay is designed for.If the clay is 7 to cone 10 and you fire to 6, it won't help. Wyndham
  5. I think it is Vermiculite Vermiculite is a hydrous, silicate mineral that is classified as a phyllosilicate and that expands greatly when heated. Wyndham
  6. Karen, the better thing to do right now is to compare(as best you can), a piece from an older firing before the new T/C and what just came out. Does one look over or under fired? Did one run more than another? Start by putting cones in each shelf c5,c6,c7. The calibration will be adding some hold time if the new firings are too stiff. You will need to do only one adjustment at a time. The other thing to consider is the age of your elements, were the firing going longer between firings? There are several things that you need to take notes on as well as remembering how long (aprox) the old f
  7. The other way to make a larger non seamed slab is to cut your slab thicker and use a mallet to pre flatten the clay to slab thickness. A rubber mallet from home depot is about $10. Cut your clay lengthwise about 3-4 in thick cover the exposed clay with a empty plastic clay bag and beat on it till it's the thickness you want. The other way is to drop it repeatedly on the floor(have a canvas down first) alternating one side then the other, until it thins out. Works well for us, Wyndham
  8. Here's a guess, based on what the early pioneers did for dirt floors, Milk. After the floor was compacted, at which point I'm not sure, they poured milk from the cows(goats, sheep ?)onto the floor and polished them( don't know this part). In another thread, this is mentioned for sealing earthenware pieces(after firing). The oil and protein of milk might be what did it I think this might be a path you might look into. Wyndham
  9. Me, I take a deep breath and have a good heart to heart with myself, sometimes it works Seriously, making unwarranted assumptions, such as "I know I turned the power off" before working on something. Everything is at a state of rest until we interact with it, snakes excluded I'm closer to building a smaller kiln to test some of those cone 6 reduction glazes I've seen of yours. That copper red mug in Micheal Baily's book looks very inviting. How close is the color photo to the piece itself? Wyndham
  10. Instead of loading you up with a lot of variation, it's most likely better to start simple, get results and add to or change ingredients, then fire again The other is to make a line test 10/90 20/80 /30/70 percent of the 2 ingredients and go from there. Most of your time will be testing until you find a promising path to refine your test. You will likely go through hundreds of test tiles to find what you like. Wyndham
  11. I'd try about 30-40 % local red clay and the rest fireplace ash. Wet Screen the red clay with an 80 mesh screen , add some screened ash, make some test tiles and try it out. From this you can see what adjustments are needed. Anytime you use ash in water, you'll be making an alkali solution that can burn you hand, use dish washing gloves. This is just a starting point, from there look to some of the books on ash glazes. Wyndham
  12. There are several online glaze calculation programs that will work very well for what you need, just Google. Wyndham
  13. No, the radiant heat from coals/embers is where you need to investigate. If you have a charcoal fire pit or can have access to making a small cooking fire on the ground, that would be the better way to learn from. Wyndham
  14. John hit upon one of the key elements of a glaze palette, how are you going to fire. Wood is different that gas which is different from electric. Each has it's strong and weak points but you are choosing a partner in the finished work by firing method you choose. From there, the choice of clay will be the next determining factor. I keep moving to light clays and may go to porcelain soon. Next is the question of runny overlappin or static decorating glazes, I like runny , reduction glazes similar to John, where I use a Mamo or Temoku as a catch glaze for a runny top glaze. Wyndham
  15. I think you have missed a point in the cooking method. They did not have a gas flame. A gas flame is a relatively short, high temp flame where as a wood and ember fire is slower to develop the flammable gas that ignites into a long slow cooking flame. Most of the heat is derived from the hot coals which is radiant heat. The second part is that most cooking is wet cooking, where the liquid in the pot, keeps the vessel cooler that that of a gas flame cooking. I have even seen on a surviver show where a plastic soda bottle , filled with water was suspended over a low flame wood fire and boiled
  16. John, I feel that I need to defend my position on the article in question. Anti-intellectualism is a trend itself here in the USA of late. Terribly sad. I would strongly suggest that those that are having serious difficulty with this particular article..... go get a couple of books on ceramic art history and read up. best, ........................john I have studied art history in general through out my life and delved into ceramic history, the 28 years of being a potter. Though some of the pieces in the article were technically well done, most gave me, the impression
  17. My own perception of trendy has a negative connotation or something with out substance. Hollywood/California trendy is a warning on my radar. Trend on the other hand seems to be used by more thoughtful writers with discussions on more weighty matters. In general, art never seems to get attention unless something absurd happens such as extreme high price or destruction art. Wyndham
  18. The face jugs in the article were of a different style than what the potters of NC & SC make. Traditional face jugs are ash glazed using fired cones for the teeth and porcelain shards for eyes. Now if we look at the cultural history of the face jug, we find it's use as a way to keep the social group, morally aware of the consequences of doing evil to one another. When a person died, a face jug was placed on the grave. If the person were a good person in the community, the face jug would remain intact for a year, then broken to let the soul rise to heaven. If they were evil in the sigh
  19. As others have mentioned, the clay is over worked. Study other youtube videos that show proper pulling and collaring. The shoulder of the pot has become fatigued and can't support the upper neck and rim. You're doing fine, just work on the basics. Wyndham
  20. You're right, soooo, is trendy for trendy sake make for a trendy Sake set. Who sets the trends, an honest question really. How do we evaluate the trend. Is it based on "who" set the trend. Is it the market the trend generates or ???? I look at the color trends for decorating each year, but the information is already old by the time it reaches the magazines. At best, there may be some inspiration in a new trend or help kick us out of our complacent work habits. I'm always leery of putting too much faith in an unproven path because my living depends on having a product for the majority of th
  21. If I wanted to build a house and chose a contractor without experience, I'd likely get what I chose. In Charleston , SC there are many fine art galleries. Many of these are founded on solid business principles, still 95 % fail. Some others are vanity art galleries. These are simply an indulgence or window dressing for the "well to do" to have a venue for social/business communication. They have no knowledge of art or care to have any deeper level of art other than the window dressing for their event. Have you ever noticed at some social event that several musicians are hired for backgro
  22. Thinking a bit more about what we've been discussing , it really does reflect a pseudo-intellectual society that has no focus or purpose other than self absorption. It has no past or structure and no vision for the future. Graffiti does express the social movement of people that feel they have to set lines of territory and power bases within what they believe they control. Graffiti at least demands we pay attention or pay a price. Where as the vacuous art world is like the French royal court before it's demise, out of touch with reallity . I'm more attuned with a street artist that has so
  23. If this is going to represent us as ceramic art in the cultural centers of the future, we have the same of chance of having a thriving pottery craft future, as the dinosaurs surviving their apocalypse. Wyndham
  24. I would bet if you increased the frit to about 10% (off the wall guess) it might bead up more, which might also look interesting. I like the tumbleweed idea. Tumbleweed might have a higher silica ratio than other ash sources and be a bit stiffer. Just a thought. Wyndham
  25. You might try oven drying 20 mule team. I got my anhydrous from a local supplier. Wyndham
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