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  1. Weekend - May 21-23, 2021 Alternative Firing Workshop Jessica Wilson Explore the hands-on process of raku, pit and horse hair firing in this intense course. Be prepared to work hard in a hot environment and to welcome the unexpected and unpredictable! Bring lots of bisque-fired pots and leave with unique, one-of-a-kind, finished pots. Intermediate $360 Registration and Information
  2. Hello! I’ve recently made my first raku firings in my home made raku kiln (a readapted tiny electric kiln) but I’ve had pretty bad results… I tried 4-5 firings using different commercial glazes thought for “normal” electric kiln low firing: colored glazes thought for 980-1050°C\1800-1920°F (with some addition of 850-1000°C\1560-1830°F Alkaline frit for lower a little bit the melting pont and make them more translucent), metallic glazes and “pearl effect” colored glazes (i.e. with addition of bismuth nitrate, I guess) that have by themselves the right temperature range (900-950°C\1650-1740°F, I believe…). The metallic glazes went out fairly well, but for the others it have been a disaster... the “pearl effect” glazes came out complitely black, very black, and very matt. The colored glazes came out full of bubbles and with a very strange metallic colored surface; this metallic layer could be removed by scratching with a steel wool. Unfortunately I’ve not taken pictures… This was the very first time for me, and I have not previous experience, no courses, never seen other peole do this kind of firing, so now I can only guess what went wrong. The first observation is that the firing time have been quite shorter that expected: 5 min at the maximum to see a “wet” glazed surface. My kiln is very very small (a cube with 13” sides), but this looks to me a very short time… So the causes for the disaster, I guess, are primarily due to the fact that I made the firings in reduction condition, too much gas, too few oxigen. This even if the fire didn’t look “smoky”. This could explain the black and metallic surfaces (even if I can’t figure out the real specific cause of the metallic surface). For the bubbles I don’t know if I waited too little time by the moment in which I’ve seen the “wet” suface, or if the temperature rose too fast, or it was too high. Could somone give me some idea about what have been my errors?
  3. I'm a beginner potter and I've tried wood firing pottery outdoors because an electric kiln is not very accessible for me. My small kiln is about a bit bigger than 2'x2'x2' and made from regular red bricks with a regular grill grate halfway to place pottery. As you can probably tell, it has terrible insulation and I can never get it to a high enough temp to fire glazed pottery. I can bisque fire and it works but It never gets hot enough to melt glaze, even the low fire glazes I use. I really don't want to ditch this project because I've already put so much time and material into it but I don't have the time/material to build a much bigger kiln or spend days firing. I also don't have a huge budget. What fairly inexpensive materials I can use to insulate my small kiln so that it can comfortably reach cone 06 and complete a glaze firing? I've looked into getting ceramic fiber board to line the inside of the kiln with, fire bricks are very expensive and probably out of my price range. Any advise from someone with more experience in this field would be very appreciated, Thank you!
  4. Hi all! I am trying to make a small pizza oven out of raku clay. Any suggestions would be welcome, but especially any answers to: 1. How thick should the walls be? 2. Can I "self-fire" the oven by building a small fire inside instead of firing it in a kiln? I dont have my own kiln, and firing it locally could get pricey.
  5. My 6 week online course on Alternative firing techniques begins on Nov. 2-Dec 11 https://www.teachinart.com/alternative-firing.html. see more courses available online at https://www.teachinart.com. Marcia
  6. Any thoughts on why this happened. Just finished a batch of wood fired Raku pieces with unique results. On some pieces I leave bare clay areas so it turns black in the reduction, however this time the bare areas have a silver appearance. I use a copper penny glaze and fire beyond cone 08 when doing a wood fire, and had the same results on paper clay and regular raku clay. The results were ok and I may try to repeat the results. Not sure the attached photo shows this very well. The fish head and area around the fish on the tile have the silver look.
  7. What is the highest cone temp you have reached in your Raku kiln- ill be using Propane for the fuel source.
  8. From the album: July 2019

    Copper & cobalt oxide glazes applied to bisque fired (950oC) pieces. Fired in a dustbin raku kiln at recent kiln building workshop. (1000oC) then plunged into sawdust to reduce.
  9. From the album: JohnnyK's Glaze FX

    First commissioned Horsehair Raku piece

    © John Klunder

  10. From the album: Raku

    On Tuesday some friends helped me install the new lid with counter weight in my kiln shed. On Monday same friends dugs a hole for gravel for my raku kiln. I filled it with gravel and laid the half cinder blocks. After I put the cinderblocks down, they moved the frame in place. Today I raised the floor to a double cinderblock height . This weekend I will work of the stainless steel chamber lined with fiber. Beautiful weather after our early snow last week.
  11. From the album: #1 karenkstudio

    Raku glazes with peel-away slip background.
  12. From the album: #1 karenkstudio

    raku assemblage
  13. From the album: experimenting

    The beads and pendants are the results of additional experiments with Raku horsehair/feather firing.
  14. From the album: rakukuku

    here is a product of yesterday's naked raku one step. pink terra sig. i added more alumina hydrate to the slip and we got the right amount of adherence. rakuku
  15. From the album: rakukuku

    stannous chloride fumed orbs
  16. From the album: Cham Solo's Pieces

    This is the bottom view, again with my signature.
  17. From the album: Cham Solo's Pieces

    This is just a different angle of the same piece.
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