Friday, 4 February 2011

Making new work

Throwing the body.
The body is attached to a loosely thrown bowl squashed and inverted
The neck is thrown, marked and joined and the lugs are rolled over a plaster former to create the patterneing and then attached.
All done while the clay is soft off the wheel.
Well, over the last week I've started making some of the larger pieces for the next firing. I've been using up the last of the course clay which I made up. I'm liking what's coming out from this, working with the clay soft and using vigorous mark making. Utilizing the material and textures it produces.
Over the next couple of weeks i'll be having a big session of clay mixing. I'll be making up another load of this course clay which I'm loving (although it's a bit abrasive on the hands after a while). It has a fantastic clay quality and fires beutifully, with great colour generation and the felspar and mounsorrel granite giving some good bleed throughs. I also need to mix up another large batch of 'porclain'. I put it in quote marks because I mix it up in a slightly rusty blunger so it gets adulterated by lumps of rust. Once I've made up my clays I'll try and leave it for a month before using, to let it settle down (although I have been known to throw it straight from the mixer), if I get impatient.
I also need to make up a new batch of ash glaze. I kept all the ash from the firebox of the last firing and will first sieve it to get rid of all the large pieces of rubbish. I don't wash it so I'll mix it straight into the other glaze materials and then sieve the whole lot through an 80's sieve. I'm also writing up the testing which I carried out in the summer in to crackle shino glazes which I've started using on a few pieces. I'll publish these on the web site in the near future.
It's blowing a hooley outside and I have to keep an eye on the tarps covering the wood stack as they keep coming loose and flapping around all over the place. Trying to grapple big sheets of tarp in 50mph gusts is hard enough, let alone trying to thread the ropes through the rappidly diminishing number of eyelets.