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Diana Ferreira

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Posts posted by Diana Ferreira

  1. thanks everyone!  I personally think Oldlady is a genius, and should be on this forum 24/7.  Your advice is logical and brilliant.  


    I cannot do real horsehair.  Do not have the equipment, and is not prepared to fire lower than 1200C for hospitality ware.  


    Well, back to the salt mines for me.  got to make new masters for a customer and pack a 15 cf kiln.  Glazed last night and early this morning.  A happy and productive day to all!


  2. ooh Wyndham, my unglazed exterior is like satin.  (unlike my hands!)  I really work my pieces before and after a bisque firing to get it smooth.  


    What does the honey/molasses do?  Do you apply it before or after the glaze?  Normally I only work with a black clay body, but for this client I am using a stoneware white that I will stain to achieve different hues, and would like to use my standard commercial clear glaze that is foodsafe.

  3. I never glaze the outside of my work, Benzine.  This will have to be done on the 'functional' inside of the work.  I could tell the customer 'sorry, no can do'  But I think it would look very good on the design.  This is a restaurant order, and quite substantial amount of work, there is no way that I could hand paint fine lines, etc.  And obviously the work need to be foodsafe.

    I am quite happy to fire something three times, if I could get the effect!  

  4. I am aware that particles of already set plaster will increase the setting time of plaster. For that reason it is important to clean your mixing bucket very well. I use a sieve when I cast to make a master. Lumps in the plaster will cause an uneven hardness in the setting plaster, and make it difficult to cut evenly. When making a mold (for casting clay) you also have to make sure that the plaster is evenly mixed, as lumpy areas might affect the absorption rate of the water from the clay. It can give uneven casting jobs. But I am sure that mixing in preset plaster can have applications in other things. I prefer to add luke warm water to my plaster.

  5. I have a little box (with air vents) and a fan heater that moves and blows warm air. It's got a thermostat, and will shut down if it gets too hot inside the box. Most molds (small and medium) dries overnight.


    Plaster molds that fits into a microwave could be dried out in that. Defrost or low setting, about 10 minutes at a go. (My ex, a professional modeller and moldmaker) taught me that trick.

  6. we use Alumina on our kiln shelves. They are not removed between firings, and thus the shelves need to be stored horizontally. But, to prevent the alumina from sticking to the bottoms of the shelves, we made little 6 mm high disks out of clay. 3 on each shelve, and you can stack 20 - 30 shelves. I use those little discs for stability when I stack my bisque kiln, because I am always scared that my vases, etc will roll around. I can almost fill my 15 cubic with glazed work from my 4.5 cubic bisque kiln.

  7. I cut my own plaster masters on a wheel. Sometimes it could take days to complete a complex master, as it would sometimes involve making a first mold so that another (more perfect) master could be created. With this 3-D technology it would still be 'my' design, but made much quicker. This translates into money saved, etc.


    Regarding the face mug that was 3-D'ed. I could never understand the fascination of the USA potters with face mugs. Thanks to the article, I understand the historical interest/love for it. But it is still a weird thing for me :-)

  8. I have fired stuff casted on the same day. But I work thin, my clay allows it, etc. I am NOT a smarty pants. I try and figure things out, question, try again, sleep over questions, ask peers and try again. Just because a rule has been laid down, does not mean that it is carved in stone. Having the attitude that everything that is not according to the holy grail of ceramics will fail or is wrong; is like living in the dark ages, refusing to accept that life is easier with what we know now, vs candles and buckets of water and a pit toilet.


    But what I do do is to take care of my elements. I always close my bungs with a bisque kiln at 600C. And if the work is really wet, I will add an extra ramp to my firing schedule with the first one very slowly. I might even hold it at 90C for an hour ...

  9. I use alumina, and in order to prevent the dust from falling, I stack my shelves (over 20) on top of each other



    With a 3 clay props between each shelve!!!


    the props prevent damage to the bottom shelves, should any of the shelves have some unevenness on it's surface, and it also prevents the bottoms of the shelves picking up any alumina that could fall on glaze work in the kiln.

  10. We have both a heatgun and a hairdryer at the studio. Strangely, I prefer the hairdryer for my clay work. I am impatient, and normally use the dryer to shrink and harden work so I can remove them from the molds. But the heatgun is best when I need to spray glaze onto an item that has been glazed too thin (and been glaze fired). Spraygun in one hand, heatgun in other, work on banding wheel spinning = quick application of glaze on a previously glazed area.

  11. Does a critique need to be a 300 page volume?


    At our studio I often get asked what I think of a new design or shape. Without thinking I will speak my mind. And more than most, after that thing that bugged me most is corrected, the work is 'better'. And speaking my mind is not a 3 hour diatribe about it either.


    You guys take yourself way to seriously.


    I have a friend who does fabulous work, but there is something lacking. And this past weekend after I saw a collection of some of her newer work, it hit me. Change your glaze. That is all that I will suggest to her. Sometimes that is all that is needed. But it will still be a good critique in my book.


    And yes. One can (seriously, you can!) give a critique of value without touching a work. Is there balance in the work? 2 or 3 shots from different angles of a piece should give you enough insight to make an observation/critique. A clear well balanced photo should reveal most colours. A high res photo that is taken fairly close should reveal pinholes, poor attachment techniques etc.


    just stop being so friggin serious! Speak your mind. You might think the work has merit, the next person think it is kak. And I think that this last sentence is the reason why most will not give critiques online - What if a peer considers the work they admire as poorly constructed? I suspect that all the 'I will not give a criticque-people' is scared to be outed by others online.

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