Saturday, November 12, 2011

Big Pot...., Whoopeee!

L to R: today's big pot, a little one from the same firing, and the big pot of a week ago.

I fired another large pot this week, another long firing that ended with me all tired, smelling of burnt cooking oil and smoke, and thinking that a change of career for something with sensible hours and, oh, some pay would be nice too!

This morning I opened the kiln and took out the result of the firing.  Now I want to make more pots again!

The pot is 19 and a half inches tall (nearly half a metre), and I applied a crystalline glaze with a dash of copper carbonate in it to the top third, and a saturated iron glaze with a chun glaze over the top to the lower two thirds.  I had planned for the crystalline glaze to run over the ones on the lower part of the pot, but was not sure how far the glaze would run, but I did expect it to be very mobile, crystalline glazes are!

I fired to cone 9 (1260C/2300F), then dropped the temperature in stages to around 1100C (2012F), holding it around there for about 6 hours.  After that I let the temperature drop to 800C (1472F) and introduced a line that dripped cooking oil into the kiln.  I kept up the oil drip until the kiln was to 650C (1202F), turned it off, then let the kiln cool naturally from that point.  It took me 24 hours from the start of the firing, to the time I was able to leave the kiln to cool.  Two firings of that kind less than a week apart was not ideal, but I really needed this pot!

There are stunning "rainbow" effects where the crystalline glaze has put out astonishing purples, oranges, and iridescent colours where it has moved over the saturated iron glaze, this is something I never expected to happen.  I did plan for the flowing glaze over glaze effect, in fact it my purpose when I made the pot to give room for a crystalline glaze to really run.

I am pleased with the crystals, they are very strong looking with well defined margins, and there are not too many of them.

Well, I'll keep this short, I am actually falling asleep at the keyboard!


TropiClay Studio said...

Fantastic glaze effects! Try and duplicate that one!

Linda Starr said...

Spectacular pot Peter, (well all of them are wonderful, but especially that tall one, all the glaze colors complement and the runs are great, and those purples oh wow, it's as if it's on fire in the middle, congratulations, rest up, while you're sleeping I'll come by and requisition that pot, I love it.

gz said...

Even better than a single glaze-the reactions between the two and the life of it add so much!!

Peter said...

Hi Robert,
I fear that it will prove illusive, but that is part of the fun! I'll certainly be trying that glaze combination again, it will be interesting to get more of the chun glaze showing through too, there was a nice interaction between that and the crystal glaze nearer the base of the pot.

Hi Linda,
It rather took me by surprise when I opened the kiln this morning. Maybe I should leave you a few cookies and something to drink, in case you, like Santa, drop by when I am asleep; just don't stand on the cat!

Hello Gwynneth,
It is so interesting to see what combinations of glaze will do. I'll try the same combination in oxidation only, it will be quite different again.

Judy Shreve said...

Today's big pot is amazing - wow! That is a 'happy-dance' pot.

I love the how the glaze breaks right at the curve and then the runs at the base - with those iridescent colors just make that pot stunning. It's so interesting to hear what combinations you try -- good thing you keep such good notes.

Tracey Broome said...

Peter, that pot is unbelievable!!! It just doesn't look real. Well worth the effort I think, put it in a fancy gallery with a big old price tag for your marathon firing!!!

smartcat said...

WOW !!

That is some the way the glaze combines at the shoulder and defines the pot.

Get some sleep while I tussle with Linda over the pot.

Definitely belongs in a high end gallery.

Armelle said...

Bravo Peter, ce pot est magnifique, wonderful effects really amazing !!!
Such a hard work, but what a reward, hey have a good night :-)

Angie said...

That latest pot is a masterpiece ....WOW. xx

Peter said...

Hi Judy,
"happy-dance pot", bless you! I like that. Keeping good notes..., um... I wonder if it is time for true confessions! My notes are mostly a terrible jumble of stuff written on the back of test tiles, and on plastic bottles, I'm afraid (although I do have my kiln logs in various exercise books). My best notes are what I write on my blog, and it is just as well I do that. I keep meaning to start a card filing system so that I can keep glaze notes, and find them easily.

Hi Tracey,
The pot is all packed up in a box and waiting to go into town to be entered in an exhibition that will be mostly painters, but is also open to ceramicists (what ever they are... oh, potters!!). Ever since I packed up the pot I've been thinking... "was it really like that??" and "did the camera lie?" The iridescent areas on the pot were quite amazing. Very much a raku type effect really.

Hi Smartcat,
I can see that I'll have to leave a little midnight feast in the fridge if all of you are going to drop by after hours!

Hi Armelle,
Thanks for that. It is delightful to have a little miracle (a "happy-dance pot") from the kiln from time to time! Guess what.... I actually managed to sleep last night!

Hello Angie,
The pot is a wonderful starting point for new things! So much to learn always, and each firing produces questions and possibilities.

Arkansas Patti said...

That big pot is amazing. You are a master, if sleep deprived.

Michèle Hastings said...

STUNNING! well worth the 24 hour firing.

Peter said...

Hi Patti,
"Master" or not, one very small cat, Nigella Stopit, still keeps me in my place! I am her personal entertainment system, her chef on call 24/7 any hour of the day or night, and personal groomer! Oh well!

Hi Michèle,
Thanks for that! I'm just delighted by how it turned out. A fairly hit and miss process, so I was lucky. The real challenge comes in doing it again!!

Anna said...

Congratulations - that is a real work of art! I love the fire and the stripes and the few crystals! excellent!

Peter said...

Hi Anna,
Thank you for writing in and for the nice comment. I'm really keen to get back to the wheel and make some more large pots so I can explore that glaze combination more, it is just so interesting what happens when one glaze is used over another one.

Melissa Rohrer said...

Just came back for my third look. That's one knock-your-socks-off pot.

Peter said...

Thanks for that Melissa, really good to hear from you. I'm hanging onto my socks, as it is still cold down here even though it is almost summer!

Christine said...

The reward that makes it all worthwhile, Cor blimey - Well done!

Peter said...

Thanks Christine, lovely to hear from you, the "well done" means a lot.