Saturday, September 27, 2008
To get the piece supported well enough to apply the pressure needed to make my cuts, I throw a thick walled trimming chuck to hold the inverted piece steady. I try to let the fresh chuck set up for a few hours before using it. When I'm ready, I simply invert the vase into the opening of the chuck, level and center the ware and start trimming.
The leather hard chucks are reusable. I simply leave it on it's throwing bat and bag it up well to keep it at a leather hard state. I try to set-up my work scedual to make use of a freash trimming chuck. I cut freash stencils, gather supplies, and throw as much work as I can juggle to finish without loosing control, (not often easy with 2 kids).
Once I'm finally finished using a trimming chuck, it's left to dry out and broken up and put in my bucket of clay scrap for recycling.
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
These are beautifully rich glaze combinations that really worked well. She loved the surprise as well... as a result, I've got a new patron for the studio!
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
A scrumptious GhostBlue glaze with fantastic optics trapped in the surface breaking off the rim. The photo series from this shoot doesn't do this glaze combo justice. This series is gorgeous!
I love the new GhostMoth stencil. I cut a stack of 32, but I've already used up nearly all of em.
The shallow concave of the trivet vitrified it self to the cup at the point of contact...
Thursday, September 18, 2008
This includes the test SteamGear Cups from last weekend and a few requested Bud Vase prototypes for the new owner of San Francisco Floral in Stockton as well as a few large faceted canisters to show at the local farmers markets.
I rushed a few of my thrown and altered budvase prototypes through the drying process and payed the price... Cracks!
The kiln was loaded and successfully fired off Friday night despite a 2 hour blackout for our neighborhood halfway through the firing. The finished bique looks really good. I can't wait to see how these cups come out!
Today's agenda is to clean and check the bisque ware, mix and screen the glazes, prep the glazing area, wax the galleys of canisters, and scrape & kiln wash the kiln shelves. All this is to get ready for glazing tomorrow, (time permitting).
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
This is a video shot last night in the studio as I worked on testing this series of stencils. Sometimes these just don't work as well in real life as they do in my head. The gear designs worked really well though, they laid down well on the compound curved surfaces up the cup without bunching up and they nicely fit into the space. Whoo ho!
This is the process of applying the newsprint stencils to the surface of a freshly thrown cup that's still attached to the wheel head. The stencils are adhered to the surface by spritzing the surface of the cup with water and laying the stencil in place. A gentle pressing with a damp sponge sets the stencil in to place.A contrasting colored clay slip is then sponged over the entire design. This slip was colored with cobalt oxide, this will fire to a wonderful blue that will influence any glaze that applied over it.
Now I can set back an get a feel how the new stencils have worked. I'll cut a foot on the bottom after it stiffens overnight.
Monday, September 15, 2008
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Sunday, September 14, 2008
To create enough stencils to play with, I make a stack of 32 sheets of newsprint sandwiched between 2 sheets of thin plastic posterboard. The edges are taped up and a pos/neg design is rubber cemented to the surface. The design is then pierced with a thin drill bit to allow a jewelers saw blade to be threaded though and cut away the design.
The plastic on the exterior of the stack gives the stack a workable level of stiffness. With practice, imagination, and patience, you can get pretty noodley with your designs.
I like mixing and matching stencils to create my designs. I usually start off working to create a specific composition... just to see what it looks like. But after that though, the work turns to a pure freeform and organic style of composition.
This is where I get to fall into a nighttime groove... it's all about the Jazz... the surprises of a flow...it's where the racers happen...
Saturday, September 13, 2008
For anyone that's curios, this is Gemini image of 2 vines. It's part of my unofficial marriage tattoo scratched in 1989 when Abbe and I joined together. (It's really almost been 20 years now, Wow!)
For us, this hallmark has been our family meat tag. We were a young biker family, riding thoughout the Southwest. It was part of our family's history. Now, it's our family's Hallmark.
This is a simple bisque stamp that I use to sprigg my hallmark on to my ceramics.
Score the surface of the piece.
Press the sprig onto the surface of the scored piece.
This is the finished sprigged hallmark on my studio's greenware.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Like yesterdays post, this is another large Halloween Treasure Canister that I've created for this years collection of spooky pots. My loss rate at this scale has gotten a lot better, but it still is too high. A few banes of the studio are cracks, blown bottoms, and glaze faults, these doom a lot of these larger pots to the shard pile.
The bottoms of these three canister where reduced to rubble by steam explosions. Mental note: stilt large works if you've recently applied kiln wash. The bottoms can trap steam and pop dramatically. Cool huh?
This bane is pin
holing. I've been throwing these larger works using recycled clay... it's got alot of organic matter in it. My kids call it "FootClay" cause, quite frankly, it smells like really stinky feet. Don't worry, all of this organic matter burns out at 2000 plus degrees when the clay vitrifies, but it does need time to soak at the upper end of the kiln cycle to finish gassing off and let the little glaze bubbles heal.