Monday, September 14, 2009

Moving Right Along

It's been a while since I posted what I've been up to in the studio. And, with the goings on in life lately, I haven't gotten to spend as much time as I'd like there anyway. But, progress has been made. The snowbell cup and the birdies were underglazed last time. Here they are as bisque.

Then I glazed them. I decided on just clear for the birdies, as well as for the red pot. Covering up weeks of painstaking detail painting is terrifying.

I also finished glazing the mug and pitcher. Here they are sitting on the shelf, waiting and waiting and waiting for the glaze fire (which finally happened yesterday).

My wine cup is now finished, and has been used a couple of times. The opal ran quite a bit, so Chris got to chip it out of the kiln, which made me popular, and the grapes didn't turn out exactly like I planned but all in all, it's okay.

My little squirrel is underglazed and waiting for the next bisque firing, which should happen this week.

My Labor Day gift to myself, after I ended up being too exhausted to attempt the scheduled trip home, was to spend all day Monday in the studio. These are all of the things I threw that day. One is hanging upside down on the bat 'cause my friend P decided to wedge clay on that table, instead of on the wedging table, and the pot collapsed from the vibrations from her banging around. We tried to save it, but I ended up throwing it away, and the lid that went with it on Friday. Wedging is like kneading really stiff bread dough to get any air bubbles out of it. It is especially necessary if you had something fail on the wheel and you're trying to reuse the clay for something else. All of these were made using clay that I spent an hour wedging back into shape. I save the failures and scraps, which were quite wet, and the small amount that I had left of a bag, which had gotten quite hard, and I wedged and wedged and wedged to blend them together smoothly. My forearms were actually sore on Tuesday!

Last Friday, I had to visit a supplier, and I didn't come back to work - I went straight to the studio. AND it was Art Walk, so the store was open until 8 instead of 6 which gave me an extra two hours to work on trimming all of the stuff that I made on Labor Day. Also, that plum saki was REALLY good and it's probably best that I had some extra time for it to disperse from my system.

I had to work last Saturday, so I didn't get any studio time. Poor little me. There are nine of us in the quality department, and we made up a calendar in January for Saturdays, since if production is running, they require a quality person in the building somewhere. Last Saturday was my turn. I think it's the first one for me this year, so I can't really complain - but I'm going to 'cause I really wanted to be playing in the studio!!

Tonight, I painted sunflowers on one of Monday's bowls for my aunt for Christmas. This went onto the shelf for the next bisque fire. Right now, I'm thinking that I'll glaze it in Expresso Bean, which is brown that breaks black. We'll see how it turns out after the firing.

Now that I'm looking at it, I probably should have done flowers all the way around it. *sigh* Too late now. If I don't like it, I've got enough time to redo it. I'm back to making bowls 'cause I have to do at least two bowls for a charity event. Restaurants are donating food, and we (the studio members) are making bowls. People will buy lunch, and get it served in a bowl to keep and all money is then donated to the local food bank. Okay, so the event isn't until February, but just the birdies took me a month and a half and - petty little twit that I am - I want people to want my bowls so I'll be carving and painting away on these the same way that I do for nearly everything else that I make.

And tonight, I also got to pick up finished things from the glaze firing yesterday. Whoot! I LOVE finally seeing stuff completely finished!

My snowbell cup... I'm very happy with it. The butterfly's rose faded to a very pale pink, but I wanted it to look like a watercolor and it does, so yay!

The red pot... I'm not thrilled with this one. All of the white markings on the carving I did inside the black band disappeared. The black ran a bit, which isn't supposed to happen, and the red looks almost pink in some lights 'cause of the bazillions of teeny tiny bubbles in the clear glaze. We are baffled as to where they came from.

And the birdies are FINALLY done. The blue darkened a bit more than planned, but aside from that, I'm pretty happy with them.

I also got back the most recent glazed things - my third coffee mug, and the pitcher. I experimented with the glaze a bit. After the dip in black, I brushed on the mottled blue, but in grades - so the first coat of blue came within an inch or so of the bottom, the second coat stopped about an inch above that and the third didn't go much past the rim. It would have worked out better if I hadn't have confused myself and forgot which grade stopped where and what I'd already done. *sigh* At least I know the theory is sound.

So that's what's new in pottery around here. P and I went together and bought glaze. We bought 10 lb of powder in each of two colors - green blue and lapis satin - and P spent part of her Saturday mixing them in buckets so we have experimenting with color to do. I still have 2 things from Labor Day's wheel fest to finish trimming and carving and painting so that's the plan for Friday and Saturday. Now to just make it through this week...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am still a HUGE fan of that denim-y blue! I want a whole kitchen full of that color!