It was unseasonably warm in Austin yesterday. I wouldn't mind that if we had just suffered through unbearable ice and snow. I also would have been marginally receptive if the humidity didn't make the air feel and taste like a moldy. wet herb garden. Instead, I was a little fatigued and all of the seven dwarves save Happy.
I went in earlier than usual, expecting to complete a custom order for six goblets, check the bisque shelf and leave in time to catch up on a "day-job" work project. Instead, I found that two of the actual cups for my goblets were bent, and I had a total of 88 pieces that needed glazing. Granted...66 of those items are jewelry pieces, but considering they all required glaze planning and individual treatments - it still went from a quick day to daunting.
So I threw two more cups to replace the ones that were damaged in drying, practiced some carving on a few of my test goblets, then attached the 4 goblets that were ready while the replacements "quick-dried" on their bats outside. (Not a practice I like to do often because I was always taught to frown on drying things too quickly.)
After all the goblets were assembled, I carved each of the stems differently so each goblet had it own personality. Then I wandered back to the glazing area to wrap my mind about the pieces waiting for me.
I managed to glaze the 7 cups, 1 cylinder/holder, two large serving bowls and six soup bowls. I put aside the jewelry pieces for this weekend, when I'm caught up in the haze of unavoidable overeating/tree decorating and holiday preparations. I'm planning to bring my ear buds, some inspiring playlists and a lot of free creative energy to the glaze table.
Here's the color/glaze combinations I used. It won't likely mean much to you, but it's more for my own edification so I can return and "yay" or "nay" these pieces post firing.
Cylinder: Cornell (iridescent burgandy glaze) overlapping a clear glaze. Used this on marbled clay with hopes the marbelized effect will show through.
7 Cups: Also created with marbled clay. Turquoise glaze overlapping a clear glaze. I'm hoping for a soft faded line where the two colors intersect.
Serving Bowl: Can I just reiterate how difficult it is to glaze a giant bowl? I've yet to find a technique that feels fluid or natural for me. I used my vinyl tape for my cups and this bowl...the tape helps me achieve difficult lines and gives some items a nice stark contrast. I fear I may not have gotten quite what I was looking for...but the glaze kiln has taught me that you never know what magic happens when unintended glazing meets the fire. I did the inside of this bowl (up to the tape line) in Waxy Blue (which actually comes out to a rich matte lavender. I did the same for the outside of the bowl, then *attempted* to do the rim in a deep, cobalt blue called Al's Black. The bowl was so large I wound up with a cat eye looking bowl center. Maybe it's fabulous. Maybe it's tragic. Time will tell.
Serving Bowl (Carved): No tape on this one, but another wide bowl with a "challenging foot." Simple and elegant in look, problematic in that it gives me NOTHING to hold onto when glazing. I tried a popular new glaze, Oribe, with an overlap of a beautiful Celadon glaze - Suzy's Green. I had some challenges with glazing this one as well...but I still have some lofty hopes for this piece.
Stay turned for results in the next studio update. Til next time - be gentle with others and with yourself.