Saturday, October 17, 2009

Firing Tomorrow, early... maybe?

We do get some good sunrises here, especially if there are dust or smoke clouds from Australia. This is not a sunrise, but it was a photo my friend took of the inside of one of my copper lustered raku bowls. The flash went off automatically and...

This is a little copper red and blue chun test bowl. Not sure if I really like it, but the blue colouring was quite spectacular over the copper red.

It has been a very busy week. Managed to clean bottoms of pots yesterday morning and load the kiln in the afternoon. It took until 10pm to get the kiln fully loaded (no afternoon tea break and evening meal at the kiln). Didn't get as far as bricking up the door until this morning. Chopped and split firewood this afternoon. It was a gray day, and a fine rain for several hours. Lit a small fire in the firebox at 5.30 this evening to take the chill off the kiln. Not sure if I'll be starting the firing in the wee small hours of the night, or comparatively late at 6am. We have our studio open tomorrow afternoon from 1pm to 5pm, and I am not sure if to try to have the firing over with by 1pm, or to aim to finish a couple of hours after we close. The last two hours are the hardest and it is useful to have Laura around in case I need more wood in a hurry or simply a quick cup of tea to keep me going. To finish before we open would mean a 11pm start tonight which is only 2 hours away! As quite a lot of days in a row have been 12 to 14 hour days with no let up I think that I will attempt some sleep. I seem to manage on 5 hours most nights now, and feel really good if I get 6.
Must away now. Hopefully the next photos will be of the firing.


Eleanor said...

you should get your students doing the late night shifts!!! Or try convince the high school they should send their unruly kids on detention to do your firings...
Maybe that won't work. I do like the red in the bowl though :-)
I intend to send you guys an email shortly. I might forget though; so if you don't get one soon it is because I'm slack.

Anonymous said...

Love the RED RED RED anything red catches my eye since I still struggle with it at cone 6. You might be able to get community service kids to help with clean up ,loading,etc? Worth a try? Or even help at a sale that would be non profit?

Kitty Shepherd said...

I couldn't work out what that top image was of from the little thumb nail you get before clicking through to you. At first I though...he's gone and got into the red hot kiln for this one! It is a beauty colour. Good luck with the firing, when you have the time I have posted up the satelite map of where I am right now...pan to the right over the lake and thats Robbie Williams' house! And thats the house I am making the commission for.

V V word is Docalspa - what so you think?

Armelle said...

This blue is beautifull. I begin to understand how hard it is to work with wood-fire. Today and yesterday I went in the forest to collect wood. For me, it's the contrary, it is slow, very slow and I can not wait to start soon !!!
Goodluck for this firing

Peter said...

Hello Eleanor,
Lovely to hear from you, a real treat in fact. Not sure about unruly kids doing a firing, I think they would be better out in the middle of a paddock somewhere running round and round and round until they no longer were unruly (probably how/why sport was invented!). Guess what...., we've received an Email from you! Well done!

Hi Mary, there must be a good cone 6 red out there somewhere?? I guess you're firing with electricity, so that does cut out some interesting options regarding reds. I fooled around a bit with chrome/tin reds in the electric kiln and I would like to try some chrome oranges and reds in the cone 07 ish temperature range, the sort you can only do in a lead glaze (these would be for some decorative or sculptural work).

Hi Kitty, had a look at your "where's Kity?" Such a beautiful place to be staying, and... ah, the Great R. W. next door! Really good news about the commission.
Regarding the V V word. Docalspa sounds like (a) a medicinal spar that bubbles out wafts of eucalyptus oil, and other sinus clearing aromatics. or (b) Docalspa is the way someone with a bunged up nose would refer to their Local spar. Docalpub, would refer to their watering hole. A Docal, would be just that, someone who's family had lived in the area for a few generations. Docal school would refer to the school that they had attended.

Lovely to hear from you. I hope you have collected lots of firewood.

I was thinking of your little kiln. You can use a mixture (about 50/50 mix) of river sand and clay to fill any gaps that might be the result of warped kiln shelves. Also ceramic fibre makes a good gap filler if you have any to spare. When making a little kiln that uses kiln shelves for a roof I will quite often put a thin layer of ceramic fibre on the top of the wall, and then rest the kiln shelf on top of that. The fibre will fill any gaps that the warped kiln shelves have made, and also give the kiln shelf good support.

I managed to do the firing today, starting at 5.45am. I am very sleepy now and keep falling asleep at the keyboard, so will have to leave it until tomorrow before I put photos on.

Happy Thoughts, P.

Hannah said...

Hope it was a good one Peter. A potter friend of mine from London is hoping to spend a couple of months over there next year, I'll send her to pop in on your place if you don't mind. Lovely lovely lady.

Peter said...

Hi Hannah,
Lovely to hear from you. Whew... exhausted today after yesterday's effort at the kiln! It would be really great to have your potter friend pop in next year. She would be made very welcome. Best if she Emails me nearer the time to make sure that we are around.
Best Wishes, P.