Monday, January 26, 2009

Raw-glazing Plates Successfully

Film Clip Below

I raw-glazed more than 300 cups successfully recently. Today, I raw-glazed 12 dinner-sized plates, and I'm confident that they should fire successfully. There was a period of time - more than 10 years ago - when I was doing a lot of raw-glazing.

I enjoyed the challenge of dipping a large pitcher into a bucket of glaze, submersing it with fingers on the bottom and fingers on its lip. One needs to keep in mind the fragility of raw clay when forming pieces to be raw glazed. I've got a large pitcher in my workspace that didn't survive the dip. It busted and plopped into the glaze bucket. I think the neck of the piece was too thin.

My plates that I glazed today have been drying for at least a week, so I knew they were dry. I brushed wax on the bottom and glazed them like I would glaze a large platter. (It's difficult to use glaze thongs on large platters, and you certainly can't use them on green pots.) I placed two fingers on each side of the plate, dipped and let the glaze run off, turning the plate like a steering wheel to allow the drips to even out before laying it down. I then brushed on some glaze to cover the finger spots.

I'll fire some tomorrow in my small kiln, then fire the rest later this week after they finish drying. Everything's coming down to the wire as we prepare to go on our annual visit to Ireland to visit Mary's folks. We're leaving Friday, and I have to get this order done soon.

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