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Sunday, 3 April 2011
Afraid to Open the Lid
As many potters know our passion is a very humbling one and definitely not an activity for the impatient. Two weeks ago I threw some large pots on the wheel - not large by many standards but as large as my kiln will hold. The pieces need to dry to leather hard - about 3 days in my basement closet-sized pottery room, then I need to turn them and try to trim a nice foot. I also need to add embellishments if I'm going to - this could take a few more days. When the piece is fully dry I touch up any flaws or blemishes that I didn't notice when it was damp and much easier to do. Now its bisque kiln time and hopefully I have enough to fill the kiln - I can't run it half full as I've already wasted electrical energy keeping 59 cent fish alive (see previous post). This takes about a day and a half to 2 days to be able to take out the still hot pieces from the kiln. Now I can apply glaze - decisions, decisions - which glaze will give the least amount of dissappointment, hmmmm. I choose and resieve the glaze, then its time to haul the mask, bucket of glaze, glaze sprayer, bucket of water, mixing stick, sponges, and assorted tools to the garage where I have the spray booth set up (this is only for large pieces - small ones get the dip treatment in afore mentioned closet-sized pottery room). Find the compressor, hook up the sprayer, place the bowl on the turntable, all the while thinking "this will be the piece that is the most beautiful piece of pottery ever made!". Let it dry for at least one or, better still, two days and load them into the glaze kiln. Two days later it's safe to open the kiln lid - How Does It Look? Warped? cracked? runny? blotchy? or, the beautiful bowl I was hoping for?