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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The little village and other pieces did not get smoked...I had wet the paper in the reduction can too much...I should explain..Raku is a multi step process. First you make the piece in wet clay or cast with slip..liquid clay and dry it. Then its fired once to burnout the impurities in the clay and vitrify the clay. Then its painted with glaze which is like liquid clay with colorants and its fired again. When the glaze is red hot and has flowed its put into a covered container with some type of combustible material and the magic happens....the colors can change into metallic because the oxygen is used up when the 1800 degree clay is laid on the  paper in the reduction chamber( mine is a steel sauce pan with tight lid, this week..Next week I will have a steel garbage can..much more easy to work with).
The hot ceramic sets fire to the paper and burns up the oxygen.
Then the chemical magic happens and well it didn't this time. But I got nice blue and green glaze on the pieces. The blue is supposed to be blue but the green was supposed to be copper? Today's fifing may shed some light on this.

The big head on the right is the only one to change a little but the green faces remind me of maybe garden gnomes or veggie people...Next time I will show you today's firing..warts and all. Its in the reduction chamber right now and I saw smoke!

Here is a little bauble. A 19.80 carat lab ruby I set yesterday. Oh of course someone may purchase this little sparkler..at my etsy shop  www.oscarcrow.etsy.com
 Next time in addition to the ceramics fun we will talk about gems and their imitators. And we will see some pretty stones and talk about mountings.

1 comment:

  1. Those little green faces are adorable. Great techniques....someday, I'll be happy to be half as talented as you are. And you are generous to share.