Saturday, October 6, 2012

salty dog

It's sort of good enough.  All the black glazes came out great..they did exactly what I expected.  Oh right..that's because I've used it a hundred times!  The other glaze?  My new and improved "Bobby's Sweet Ash" glaze..  eeehhhhh....  not so good.  For one, it came out a lime like, poopy green color.  For two, I applied it too thick causing it to run like mad!  Most of the ash glazed pots...were sort of failures.  I'm hoping that a refire in the gas kiln will brighten them up and settle out the glaze that seemed to boil a bit towards where it pooled..  It just did too much of what I was hoping for.  I went too far!  Hey kids, did you know that holding your kiln at a high temperature for a really long time will encourage your glazes to run even more!  Remember learning that?...because I sure do, but I didn't remember until it was too late!!  What was I thinking??  But not only that....  The glaze needs less ash and more clay to stiffen it back up.

I've written about this sort of thing before..where pots just don't come out the way I plan.  What the hell?  I thought I was good at this.  I mean, well, yah, I'm good.  But I keep doing super noob moves now and then..   like one of those killer jars at the top.. I forgot to wad the lid.   

I mean, look at that carnage.  what a load of salty dogs.  I'm not even sure grinding them is worth it.  But I will.  I'll try to save them...  too much time involved to let go.  I'll grind..then refire in the gas..  and if they're still super the dumpster they go!

The big guys took the brunt and held up nicely.  One or two of these will definitely make the show in December... along with 3 or 4 of the jars at the top, and a group of bottles.  All in all.. at least it was better than my last firing.  Lets hope I only lose 25% from the next kiln load..and by the time I leave I'll have it down to 0%.  Jesus.. I haven't missed my little wood/salt kiln back home more then I did yesterday.  

Anyways.  Back to the drawing board, back to the wheel..... and back to the studio for the next round.  


  1. Just like the little train "I think I can, I think I can..." and he finally did! Can't wait to see you make it over the top :-) xxxxxooooo

  2. thanks, judy. thanks, mom! yah. one step at a time.. i'll nail this sooner then later, i hope.

  3. Well with undefined expectations the results don't look as negative you describe them. I don't mind a run or two of fluid glaze. You should definitely be able to salvage some of those nice forms.

    1. hey Cambriea. Thanks for your comment. I left the bad shots out.. a lot of those pots with the ash glaze have an excessive amount of pooled glaze on the inside..and in most cases actually boiled, leaving large, open holes in the really thick areas of glaze. Also.. I'm becoming more of a control freak about how the pots should be turning out. it's becoming harder and harder to accept accidents, or unwanted results. i'm becoming more aware of the incredible amount of responsibility and knowledge and general smarts it takes to get this pottery thing right. and in my mind, "right" should come out how i want it to, no matter what..and if it doesn't..i've let something slide and screwed it up. does that make sense? Sure, I enjoy a "happy accident", or the serendipitous blush of romanticism....the nice drip of glaze too..but...not this much!... ah well. so it's a journey towards a standard. it's telling myself, this is what I want..and getting every step down to achieve a load of acceptable pots. and amongst a kiln load of acceptable pots..there will always be a few that are dazzlingly wonderful...and those few pots are the carrot in front of my face..just slightly out of reach.. which keeps me going. i just have to be a little smarter about it. I hope your right about salvaging a few. I'm going to grind down of glaze drips and see what a quick refire in the gas kiln will do to them. hopefully the boiled holes in the glazes will fill in. take care!