June 3, 2013 § 2 Comments
Firstly, thank you for the wonderful array of comments from the last blog post. People are making myriad things from ware-shelves and wedging tables in preparation for making to jelly fish made from umbrellas and memory quilts. It all sounds fascinating and it’s lovely hearing about all the incredible work going on.
I’ve learnt a lesson over these last few weeks. I’ve been glazing a lot of pots in preparation for the shows I have been doing recently and have been using a bowl that I tested a green glaze out on what seems like ages ago.
Initially, I had wanted to have four glazes for the British Craft Trade Fair – blue, black, old white and green – but at the last minute decided that I didn’t like the green and didn’t take any green pots with me. The glaze is the same base glaze as my other glazes with 3% Copper Oxide Black added. The week before the BCTF, I was frantically trying to think how I could use it and randomly added 1% nickel to the large bucket I had already made up to see if that made it any better. It didn’t – it just made it dirtier.
But now, having had the bowl sitting on my shelf and then using it, I love it.
It breaks in that wonderful rich way the other three glazes do and is full of depth and interest, ranging from really quite bright grassy green spots to dark forest green.
I think the problem I had with the glaze was that on the outsides of the pots it lay very thin and, consequently, looked insipid and didn’t feel good to the fingers. So, instead of looking at the wonderful insides of the pots I saw the rather pathetic outsides. I was in a rush trying to get everything right for BCTF and felt the pressure was on.
You can see what I mean on the bottom of this jug.
What I’d really like to do now, though, is go back to this glaze and try to make it work. I am happy with how it functions on the insides of the pots, therefore I don’t think I want the glaze to be any thicker, as that would alter dramatically what happens in the hollows. So, that means doing some tests to see how long to dip the outsides. If only I hadn’t added that 1% nickel! But maybe the answer is to try the nickel version first in case that comes up with some unexpectedly beautiful results – and I wouldn’t want to miss out on those by having my eye taken by a different prize.