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Hello, I have a figurative sculpture piece in a cone 5 white stoneware that I made poor Iron Oxide choice on. I put a fairly light Iron Oxide wash on over the entire thing as bisqueware, then fired it to cone 5. I'm O.K. ( or fatalistic) with about 90% of the surface, but the region of the head, which is a distinct area, is bothering me. There are some medals on the figures chest and i ran some super fine sandpaper over one and some of the oxide came up, the sanded area looks white. However that surface is closer to a burnished surface then the face is (I think) - so maybe the face absorbed more Iron Oxide?

So I was thinking if I could sand off the face and... I don't know, some white glaze, or even try to underglaze and re-fire? My problems are a) I don't know how deeply Iron Oxide permeates a bisqueware piece, and b) I don't know when to stop messing with something. It may be I should just leave well enough alone.

Just tried to put an image up but I'm not sure how to have a URL for an image, my carbonmade account isn't helping. Anyway, any sage advice would be appreciated .

 

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Could you post some pictures, to give us an idea, of how it looks?

 

What aesthetic were you going for?  I use oxide washes, when I am looking to highlight textures and/ or create an aged look. 

If that's what you are trying to do, then sanding the raised areas should work.  Just make sure you wet sand or wear a respirator, because the dust isn't something you want to breath in.

A light glaze could *potentially* be affected by the iron, that is already on the ceramic body.  I am honestly not sure on an underglaze. 

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large.0.jpg.2ee0b1080106289664752ab6d9cbf29a.jpg

 

 

Thanks for the responses! this is what I'm working with here. I sanded that little area on the medallion on his chest off. the surface was real smooth there and it sort of came off in an abrupt swath. I guess I'm worried that sanding it will make the piece patchy, but its largely all the same tone value now. It was a pretty light wash.

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11 hours ago, Min said:

Maybe instead of trying to lighten up the piece you could darken the recesses and crevices with either an underglaze or darker oxide wash to create more of a contrast.  I like where the iron is heavier, like around some of the small detail attachments.

That seems like a great solution.  I think it would be more effective/ successful, to darken the dark areas, compared to lightening the light areas.

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Thanks again. I think I am going to go darker as suggested.  I brushed some into the cracks and I like that I can wipe it away from the surface now without it staining - I mean, its helping me get the recess dark easier! One last round of questions for the community- If I'm applying Iron Oxide to a vitrified piece, how is it going to respond? And what is a good temperature to re-fire to just so the Iron Oxide adheres on? I can't seem to find the information on the internet in a way I trust.

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1 hour ago, Brian Thompson said:

Thanks again. I think I am going to go darker as suggested.  I brushed some into the cracks and I like that I can wipe it away from the surface now without it staining - I mean, its helping me get the recess dark easier! One last round of questions for the community- If I'm applying Iron Oxide to a vitrified piece, how is it going to respond? And what is a good temperature to re-fire to just so the Iron Oxide adheres on? I can't seem to find the information on the internet in a way I trust.

You'll need to mix the RIO with a little flux to get good adhesion.  Frit 3134 or gerstley, just a smidge

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11 hours ago, Brian Thompson said:

And what is a good temperature to re-fire to just so the Iron Oxide adheres on?

I'ld just take it up to cone 04 and fire very slowly to avoid cracking. 50 red iron oxide plus 50 gerstley borate will make an almost glaze like wash and will adhere at 04. (just don't get any on the bottom of the piece or it will stick to the kiln shelf). If you want it drier looking try 70 red iron oxide and 30 gerstley borate for cone 04

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