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TJR

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Posts posted by TJR

  1. If you're looking for copper reds, many an undergraduate student is advised to start with a celadon base glaze and add copper. Celadons were traditionally used on stoneware clay (think Koryo dynasty in Korea), not red clays. A tiny amount of iron from the clay body leaching into the glaze is the source of the green. If you start adding it to the glaze itself, it becomes too intense very rapidly. In my experience, the iron will overpower the copper. That's not to say you won't get an appealing colour of some kind, it just won't be the effect you're looking for here.

    Diesel;

    Let me get this straight. Do you begin with a Celadon glaze that already has 2% iron in it, or do you get the iron from the clay body and the copper is added to a plain clear glaze to get the copper red?

    TJR.

  2. Baaah, you little stinker... :D You should give terracotta a chance! ^_^ I mean... redart with mica? It SPARKLES. And it's RED. And it's like buttah.

    I have been wanting to look into luster, but I'm chicken and it's suuuu expensive!

    -G

    I've got a crap load of old earthenware clay, bagged up, rock hard dry that I am going to reconstitute and then fire Majolica. But then those stoneware and porcelain glazes keep sucking me back in. So beautiful...so little time.. so beautiful...[sound fades out].

    TJR.

  3. When throwing, I bring hot water out to the studio in a wash-pail bucket. Two gallons,maybe. Water is heavy. i do not drain water anywhere. It just seems to evaporate. The water that does not get used for throwing fills two 3 quart milk jugs. From these I water my two geraniums.

    I did dig a four foot trench from my house to my studio which is twenty feet away. It has an electrical coil on it to keep the water from freezing. I also have a sink that drains back to my house drain. I didn't end up hooking the rest of the system up. I use surprisingly little water. I bring in a 5 gallon bucket of clean water from the house for glaze mixing. I keep glaze water separate from clay water.I bring all seives and dirty glaze pails back to my laundry sink to wash.

    The only flaw to my system is that I have buckets of water sitting around the studio.

    TJR.

  4. Pugaboo;

    I had a problem similar to this last year. I had porcelain trimmed feet sticking to the shelf. The term is called "plucking". I have a small dish of alumina hydrate and water. I mix this up so that it is in solution, then brush it on. While the piece is still centred, I brush the wax on over top of the alumina. You cannot drip any alumina on your glaze, as it is refractory, and will not melt.

    TJR.

  5.  

    Clayppl;

    Don't be switching your wheel to clockwise and training yourself to throw that way. If you do this, no one will be able to help you with techniques.

    TJR.

    As a lefty who throws with the wheel going clockwise, I disagree slightly with this. I have no problem learning from others who throw counter-clockwise--the key for me at least is to just sit opposite them to watch. But then, like most leftys, I am very very used to living in a right-handed world, and forcing myself to translate techniques, etc., on a daily basis. translating throwing techniques is NOTHING compared to fighting with a 3-ring binder.

     

    I am left-handed. I throw counter-clockwise. As I have said before, this one of the few areas where being left-handed is an advantage. The left hand is the forming hand-e.g. the inside of bowls. Sometimes I trim pots right-handed, but mainly, I do everything left-handed. You would be surprised as to how many artists/musicians are lefties. It's a brain thing.

    TJR.

  6. Clayppl;

    Don't be switching your wheel to clockwise and training yourself to throw that way. If you do this, no one will be able to help you with techniques. When you watch youtube, you will have to reverse everything. All of us in North America, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Bermuda, etc throw counter clockwise. Lots of wheels only move in one direction-counter clockwise. If you lived in Japan and China, you would be O.K. going the other direction.

    TJR.

  7. Mark Hewitt in North Carolina glues small pieces of blue glass to the handles of his large jugs. These are called glass runs. He uses Elmers glue. He fires in a wood kiln to Cone 12. Glass can run quite a long way on a pot, so be careful. You can put crushed glass inside a bowl for an interesting effect.

    Crushed glass used in glazes is called cullet.

    TJR.

  8. Hey, there;

    I taught Adult Pottery at the local city art gallery for eight years. I also taught kids classes on Saturday mornings. Taught Gifted and Talented drawing from 9-11, half hour break, then taught a clay class to 9,10 years olds, then taught a clay class to 5 and 6 year olds. So that was 5and a half hours of teaching on Saturdays, and 3 hours on Wednesdays. I was able to put myself through the after-degree Bachelor of Education program. I have now been teaching art full time for 27 years.

    The thing with clay classes is that you have to have STRUCTURE.The class was 10 weeks. I had 14 students and only eight wheels. We started with hand building. Pinch and coil one week, slab the next.My theory was that if you weren't successful throwing, then you could go back to hand building. When teaching throwing, I would demonstrate, get the students going, and then leave the room for 15 minutes. When I came back, I would demonstrate again.and the students were WAY more attentive for the second demo.

    I always had a syllabus -centreing, cylinders, mugs and jugs with handles, lids,bowls, plates, glazing and decorating, and then some catch up time.

    The adult classes were three hours, allowing 30 minutes at the end for clean-up. There was a technician to load kilns and mix glazes, which was great for me. We fired to cone 6.

    After I started teaching high school, I couldn't do the evening and week-end classes. It was just too much. I really enjoyed my time there.

    TJR.

  9. Happypots;

    You have to make the class more structured. As the previous poster said, start with cylinders, then bowls etc. You don't mention whether this is a handbuilding class, or a throwing class.I always started my clay classes out with the basics-coil, pinch, slab. Then, if she gets frustrated on the wheel, she can go back to building by hand. Learning to throw is difficult, as you know. You make a good point about her being the only one in the class, so she doesn't see that others would feel just as frustrated.She cannot make your work until she learns the basics. Hang in there.

    TJR.

  10. I leave the top bung out for the first two hours of the firing, especially for a bisque. This allows your moisture from glazes and clay body to escape. It is also easier on your elements and less corrosive if the moisture can get out. Then I put all spies in and fire her up. If the top spy hole plug is left out for the duration of the firing, your firing will be slower and cost you muchoe more electricity.[and time].I do not think that your colours would look better because of the spies being left out. Possibly commercial reds might be an exception. They can be tricky!

    TJR.

     

     

    Dear TJR,

     

    Leaving the top peep hole open is exactly what I did yesterday. I wanted to candle for two hours but with this new computerized kiln, the "slow bisque" setting moves really slowly. My large platters were bone dry so I thought, what the heck!!!

     

    Given that candling is my usual practice, I will be trying to achieve this in a ready to go digital formula.

     

    Good reminder though about the corrosion on the wires. I forgot about that.

     

    Thank you.

     

    Nelly

     

     

    Nellie;

    Lucky you to have a brand new Cone Art kiln. I had to sell mine when I moved out of my previous studio. I did not want to lug it down the stairs. Hey, that reminds me, I am still owed $150.00 bucks for it. I am not that familiar with computerized kilns, although I used one when I taught a course called Ceramics for Art Educators at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon. [hard to spell] I know that you can reprogram those babies to fire faster though. That staining on your nice metal kiln wall comes from moisture leaking out of the kiln lid. Better to direct it out of the spy holes.Enjoy your summer. I am still slogging it out at high school until June 30.

    TJR

  11. I leave the top bung out for the first two hours of the firing, especially for a bisque. This allows your moisture from glazes and clay body to escape. It is also easier on your elements and less corrosive if the moisture can get out. Then I put all spies in and fire her up. If the top spy hole plug is left out for the duration of the firing, your firing will be slower and cost you muchoe more electricity.[and time].I do not think that your colours would look better because of the spies being left out. Possibly commercial reds might be an exception. They can be tricky!

    TJR.

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