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About karan

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  • Birthday 05/02/1967

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  • Location
    Lebanon, OH
  • Interests
    Pottery, Kayaking, Hiking, Camping, Reading, Hangin' with My Peeps!
  1. I usually do three things... If it is an item that is normally held in a hand... like a bowl or cup, I often shoot one photo holding it. Secondly, I provide in product description a volume in ounces, if appropriate (like cup or bowl... not colander) Thirdly, I provide measurements of height and width in the product description too. I agree with many people above, I find rulers distracting! :-) Karan
  2. Wish I could tell you the number of times I have left home at night to come to school to check a kiln! I've been teaching art in public schools for 24+ years, and when I taught elementary, I also had a kiln sitter, and had to prop my lid. I had the night custodian's personal number at the time! ;-) Now, teaching high school ceramics, I fire any or all of my 4 kilns about 4 days a week. Juggling programs and such has led me to a great trick... Now, after I program my computerized kilns, I actually take a VIDEO of my program when I hit review, so, that way, when I inevitably wake up at 1:30 am worrying about Sarah's pot that was extra thick, I can check my preheat timing to confirm the program on the video. I still make an occasional mistake, but it helps my forgetful brain to reassure me in the wee hours! I too, like Dianna, offer my assistance to any questions you may have- teaching ceramics full time now for the past 17 years! :-) Oh, and if you would be interested- I invite you to check out videos I made for my high school students on my youtube channel! https://www.youtube.com/user/KaransPotsAndGlass/featured Best of luck! :-) Karan
  3. I put them in a heavy cardboard box- give my teenage son goggles and gloves and a hammer...
  4. I originally set up my Etsy shop as people at my local art fairs would ask to see my website... I wasn't active for about the first year and a half or so... but have had much more activity these past couple of years. It is a little supplemental income... but not huge for me, as it is just nights and weekends to dedicate to my shop. I think the best thing about it for me, is just the ability to give people my direct shop link... even if I don't sell through Etsy, locals often look, and contact me directly for a sale in person. I still am weighing whether or not I feel all the work is paying off though... I've been looking at it as though I am laying groundwork for the long haul... the question then becomes when is the groundwork being laid finished, and the long haul beginning... :-) Karan
  5. I mop my floor at home studio every day at the end of my working time. I have a great microfiber mop I love- leaves very little to no residue behind when the pad is rinsed often. Like a swiffer- but better, as I was my pad, and use my own solution (like water) in the bottle rather than a commercial one. Made by rubbermaid... At school (I teach High School Ceramics all day) I mop at the end of each class, and have the kids do it too... then again a once-over at the end of the day. I try to get stuff up as soon as I see it... or else it gets tracked all over. Lest you think I am a neat freak... let me assure you I'm not. I'm just particular about not breathing in microcrystalline silica... :-)
  6. Thanks, John! I'm not normally a hypochondriac- Hopefully just a "bug" going around!
  7. Thanks, Mark! I did read (and copy) that post of John's previously... however, I need specific citable references for my administration re: particulate size...Thanks! Glad you got your new filters! :-) Karan
  8. Hi everyone- I am looking for SPECIFIC information that can be confirmed in official documentation or writings regarding the size of microcrystalline silica dust particles. My school is looking at whether or not my filtration unit in my classroom will effectively filter microcrystalline silica. (I am thinking it does not currently...) I have been asked to provide the size of the micron needed for effective filtration. I gave an estimate to the guy who asked me that it needed to filter particles that were less than a micron. I told him that I thought the only filters effective enough to do that were HEPA filters. It appears mine are not. That is a great concern for me, as I've been teaching in this room with a filtration system that may have been spewing microcrystalline silica back into the air that I breathe on a daily basis for 9 years! So, my question is: Can anyone give me the size of filtration needed, and back it up with official documentation, link, book, etc, that I can site? Any help would be GREATLY appreciated! Thanks in advance! Karan Witham-Walsh HS Ceramics Teacher, Mason, Ohio Ohio
  9. Mark, I'd be interested in finding our your source for these filters you mentioned. I have been teaching hs ceramics for the past 13 years... 9 of which have been in my present building. When built, I gave the architects specs on the plumbing concerns, and filtration and venting concerns I would have. I was specific to relate the need to catch the silica, but after reading all these posts, I have fears that resurfaced last night, (as I've had a slight asthmatic feeling in my chest the past 24 hours...)and I lost a good deal of sleep! My biggest fear is that the filters aren't the HEPA type needed, and when it is running, it is filtering the big stuff, and making all the little stuff airborne again. ACK! I am going to contact the manufacturer/installer today- as I was never given info on it. (Imagine that!) I am a little stunned that I never pursued having anything in writing before this, and I just totally believed hook-line- and-sinker that they had my health in mind when they put this in!
  10. A fun, non-fired finish I would do with kids sometimes would be to use watercolor paint, and seal with a sealant- either a clear wax like a floor wax, or even a clear shoe polish! (darker shoe polishes work great on texture too!!!) But, I agree with the previous response too... the teacher's palett from Amaco is dependable. Just anticipate if you are doing the backs- you would of course have to stilt them! Karan
  11. I have had luck with sieving my glaze after freezing. It is a pain though, take valuable studio time. And the clay... oh, what a pain! Had to re-wedge all the frozen stuff come spring thaw. Ugh. Not what I want to be doing in the studio! Luckily now, my studio is in my basement, and no longer in my outdoor shed! :-) Good luck! :-) Karan
  12. I always turn mine upside down, and let wd40 do some work overnight, or liquid silicone! Good luck! :-) Karan
  13. Strangely enough, my reply I made yesterday isn't showing- so please disregard if you see two responses from me here. So, I am mostly concerned with the post-firing/post reduction state of the claybody. Say, after the kids pieces are fired, and they are cleaning them, we find them to be more brittle and easy to chip. If the kids drop them into the sink from a short distance of a few inches... (when they are cleaning them) they will easily break. The breakage wouldn't happen if the clay body were just bisque fired though. It is clear that the reduction has weakened the forms. (the breaks occur within cracks that have a smoky look- where the smoke has permeated) I will describe my firing process, and you can tell me what you think... I preheat my kiln a little bit to take the chill off on cold days. Then, I load my pieces. I turn up the gas, and heat them slowly the first 10-15 minutes to reduce thermal shock. After the slow heating of the pots, I then crank up the gas, to bring the kiln up to temperature. Usually takes another 30 minutes to reach final temp. (I have a small 18" I believe Olympic raku kiln) I then take the pieces out, put them in my containers for reduction. Now, I do allow them to sit in the reduction for quite a while... maybe half an hour or so. (I pretty much do this on my class bell schedule... when the next class comes in with the bell, and I'm putting in their pots, I take out the previous classes' pots from the reduction chambers) So, I'm wondering, is my length of reduction bad? Could that be causing a greater problem with a weakened state of the claybody?? I do get great glaze results with the long reduction... I guess I just need reinforcement from someone who knows more about raku than I do...Maybe this is all within the expected norms for the outcome for raku? Thanks a bunch for input! Karan
  14. Standard Raku Claybody. Hmmm... forget the number, I can check in a bit.
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