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Callie Beller Diesel

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Everything posted by Callie Beller Diesel

  1. If you’re interested in making large wares but have joint and body issues, track down some Korean Onggi pot making videos. They have a slab/coil building method that’s kinder on the body and still badass.
  2. Ah, but the place where mastery of all the chemistry, kiln logs and science meets you're own giddy sense of "what if?" is where the art happens! Instead of thinking of these things as onerous, let your own curiosity and excitement guide your learning. It's sooooo much fun! Narrowing your field of study to one clay body and 5 glazes will still leave you with a lifetime of figuring out how they all work together.
  3. Hi and welcome! One of the things that is interesting and challenging about clay is that most things are possible. Wether you want to put the work in to make it happen and how badly you want the end product are different matters entirely. I personally never had serious issues working with b-mix. (It also comes in a grogged version, btw.) I don’t like working with it because it’s weird an rubbery, but mine is likely an unpopular opinion on that, and since you got that opinion for free, it’s worth what you paid for it. Porcelain gets a bad rap among beginners because they’re still g
  4. Hi Victoria and welcome! Not to worry, there are a number of us from Canada, England and Australia. Speaking metric and degrees C isn’t a problem. And asking questions IS contributing! In regards to your kiln, it’s only necessary to fire the kiln empty if the elements are brand new. Doing this creates a coating on the metal that wouldn’t form in the presence of things that off-gas from clay when it’s fired. The coating helps the elements last longer, The length of the firing doesn’t matter a great deal, and yes a bisque cycle would work fine. It will go pretty quick because the t
  5. Hi @Gin and welcome! I think if you were to start with a darker clay like M390, you'd use less stain.
  6. I noticed people shopping in person were taking the opportunity to buy the larger pieces. Online, I can't keep mugs nailed down.
  7. If you want the simplest and easiest homemade underglaze recipe, mix your stain with equal parts of EPK and frit. So that’s a 1:1:1 ratio. Bonus points if the frit you’re using is also one of the fluxes in your glaze, but it will all work. reasons for those ingredients: The frit helps bind the sometimes very refractory stains to the pot, and the clay is an extender. Stains can be expensive, so the clay is just there to extend the recipe and help make it more brushable. Edited to add: You will still get a saturated colour if you keep the clay to this level. I have used g
  8. I find tools and materials are a pretty personal choice, so it’s one of the times I do agree with getting gift certificates to your local supplier. Subscriptions to things like CLAYflicks, Pottery Making Illustrated, Ceramics Monthly, Studio Potter are also great gift ideas. There’s loads of books on technique available too.
  9. 3134 and 3124 were used to reformulate recipes that use gerstley borate/colemanite/ulexite. The gelling and the flaking and the solubility and the LOI being issues in the natural sources.
  10. Was curious about the relative solubility of calcium sulfate, so checked Wikipedia. Apparently its very soluble when its cold, and gets less so as it's heated. It's kettle scale. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calcium_sulfate
  11. You won’t hurt it by sieving it, and if there’s no chunkies, it’ll give you information either way.
  12. All levels of governments here are encouraging everyone to shop local. Federal, provincial, municipal, are all united at least on this one point. There’s been tons of directories and campaigns online and off springing up, encouraging folks to support handmade, support small businesses, etc etc etc. We’ve just entered further lockdown restrictions again here, and I expect another online rush because of that. I’m releasing my shop update tonight to my newsletter subscribers and giving them 24 hours access before I tell everyone else on social media. People are nesting. If the
  13. You can definitely over-flocculate a wood ash glaze. They come already flocculated through the solubles, like the significant amounts of sodium and potassium that are also present. It’ll be worse if you’ve washed your ash first, but it’ll still happen with the washed stuff. When you added the Epsom salts to it, it’s now over-flocculated, hence the gelling and rapid settling. I’ve never seen wood ash turn into plaster, but I can’t claim to have seen everything. You might be able to rescue it with a dab of deflocculant like Darvan, but I’d test it on a small quantity before committing to the wh
  14. If you do sit at the wheel, it can also be helpful to place a brick under the foot that isn’t controlling the foot pedal. It keeps your hips even, and you lessen the extension you’re making to one side.
  15. I don't know a whole lot about European programs, but I believe Germany has a formal apprenticeship system for studio pottery that grants certifications. There is also an emerging new program out of Stoke on Trent in England called Clay College. Those are the ones off the top of my head.
  16. I’m on the prairie side of the Rockies, just on the edge of the foothills. A lot of movies set in Montana or Colorado are actually filmed near my city because it looks right, but the exchange rate stretches budgets further. I live in the city, but wood isn’t hard to come by. Various softwoods are plentiful just outside city limits. By fuel burning, I meant I’d be happy with a gas kiln too. Interestingly enough, because of the gas code here, it would be easier to build a Fast Freddie wood kiln in my yard than it would be to buy or build a gas kiln.
  17. Cathi Jefferson, who was one of my pottery heroes in school told me she didn’t start full time until she was 46. (She had earlier education and stuff). She said this at a workshop I took when I was restarting pottery after a took a ten year break after my BFA in ceramics too. I was 36 and hadn’t found out I had ADD (inattentive type, no H). At the time, I felt like it was a message from the universe. You are not too old, and you will find that your experience to this point will help move you along the past faster than might have been when you were in your 20s. Give yourself somewhere
  18. You want to use new cones. The old ones have had at least some heat work on them, and they shouldn't be trusted.
  19. I keep solution in a 500 ml Mason jar, and I find if my studio gets cold, they precipitate out and the bottom gets crusty. Heat it back up in the microwave and they’ll re-dissolve.
  20. Hi Susie and welcome! It would help your efforts if you’d post your location, so that any offers come from a reasonable travel distance to you. The forum here is mostly based in the US, but we get regular contributions from all over the world. @RobustEnergies
  21. @Min do you have hard water or soft? Mine’s extremely hard.
  22. If you’re buying the whole dry bags from Plainsman, it comes in 20 kg measures. So no need to convert back and forth to Imperial. 20,000g at 1/2 a percent is 100g. Weird that you’re not finding the Epsom salts to work, @Min. I just mixed a 2kg batch of it last night, and the solution worked fine on it. I didn’t use the premix though: I just used my own raw materials.
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