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Latest results with crater glaze....

The story of my trials with textural stoneware has been a long drawn out affair, with lots of experimentation- and a fair degree of success and failure along the way. It's documented here on the blog, with early tests  recorded in about 2012- but in truth I've been dabbling a lot longer without much in the way of luck- and a lot of melted kiln shelves! The appeal of crater/lava/volcanic glazing lies in the directness and spontaniety of the effect- which seems somewhat akin to the immediacy and spirit of Raku, and it's randomn unpredictability.

I settled on a base volcanic glaze with a thick white matte glaze which is applied over the top of the bisque pot. This has about 4-5 percent of silicon carbide within the base volcanic glaze recipe which of course reacts and bubbles in the glaze firing. I fire to 1240c in oxidation, and the beauty of this particular technique is that if the glaze bubbled too violently -it  can be rubbed back with a stone- glaze re applied and re-fi…
Recent posts

A Visit to Southwold

I had the pleasure of popping along to the Buckenham Galleries in Southwold, Suffolk yesterday to drop off some new work for their summer show.
It's always enjoyable and I had a nice chat about art with  curator/owner  Graham. I've been lucky to have work with them for over 10 years now. So a celebration of sorts!

Pottering in Cornwall - the Leach Pottery

A recent holiday trip  to  St Ives - meant I could at last visit the Leach Pottery. This was  25 years after I had first tried visiting as a student when it was closed. I think it was just after Leach's wife, Janet, had died, so I remember feeling really disappointed.  To finally get there after so long, since my halycon  student days, was somewhat of an emotional experience. Leach is not someone who has particularly influenced my style of work, I guess I pitch somewhere within  mid century- modernism, (I was always a Rie- Coper  fan back at Uni)- but you cannot deny he is a giant of pottery- with a tremendous legacy.

A few years back I developed some problems with high blood pressure and it caused me to pause and reflect and  re evaluate my own work. You tend to work within a specific narrow field, to shut out "other" stuff- perhaps I was a bit arrogant, stubborn even - but I was prone to dismiss the grand- father of British Studio Pottery as just "old brown pots!…

Some recent firings

It's taken me some time to get my act together and start doing some new raku firings. I've had to overcome one or two problems regarding smoke- from a neighbour who was concerned. It's one of the issues with raku or smoke firing I guess- especially living in North Essex, which is getting increasingly built up.

To this end, I sunk two post reduction bins into the ground, so that they might be lidded, and double sealed on top by a larger dustbin- to which I have grafted on a tall metal funnel. I was concerned this might add to the "draw" in the reduction bin and cause a burn out- but this fear proved unfounded. Apart from the usual initial burst of smoke before sealing- the ongoing post reduction smoke is piped - well - up up and away from the neighbours direction. I would say it's cut down on about 75 percent of the smoke. Of course I now put out the second hand wood shavings out  with water- rather than letting them smoulder away. I think this was a big fact…