July 28, 2014 § 3 Comments
This post is following on from a visit Dan Hogan made to my workshop at the beginning of the year. While he was there we discussed glazes and things, and I said that I had picked a third colour from a selection of 8 test tiles, not necessarily because it was the colour I was after but because it looked the best of the 8 and I needed to pick one for a trade fair that I was participating in a couple of weeks’ time. The glaze went from a test tile to a third colour on pots at a trade fair without much in between. A couple of weeks after the show, Dan asked me how the colour had turned out and I said it had turned out fine.
So, 6 months later and how is the colour fairing? I like it more and more.
A lady who owns a shop in London, called Maud and Mabel, ask me last year if I would make a grey. It was something I had been thinking about myself anyway, as the white that I had as my original third colour had not been selling as well as I would have liked. It is so difficult to find a colour that you are happy with and it can take months of trying and still you struggle. There is a beautiful Goldmark Gallery film of Jim Malone working in his studio and glazing pots, in which he talks about finding the ‘right’ glaze. He says that it is possible to make hundreds and hundreds of tests to find the ‘one’, which can blinker you to all sorts of possibilities that you just don’t see.
Since the beginning of the year, I have adjusted the weight of the glaze, so that I feel the consistency is right. This, obviously, affects the colour. I have called it ‘heather grey’ because there is the slightest hint or wash of pink/purple through it. I love the three colours together now. They are, in the loosest sense, variations on grey. There is charcoal black (deep grey/black), teal blue (which is actually a kind of slate grey/blue), and then this heather grey. I feel they sit well together. All three glazes have Nickel Oxide and Cobalt Carbonate in them. The black has the addition of Red Iron Oxide and the blue Copper Oxide (it is the same base glaze for each of the three). The grey is just Nickel and Cobalt. So there are incredible similarities/harmonies across the three of them.
I would like to add a yellow, as a contrast. Not to the whole range but as an accent, certain pieces picked out. This is one of the jobs for between here and Christmas.
July 7, 2014 § 1 Comment
This last week in the workshop has been extremely busy. I am currently on a push to deliver orders delayed by the fire and make stock for Potfest in the Pens. I had such an enjoyable time last year at Potfest that I can’t wait to return, less than a month now. And following on from my good fair in Devon recently, I am hoping that my luck continues. But this means having enough stock… I have another week making for orders, then I will be concentrating on Potfest. I am slightly concerned as it hasn’t left much firing time but I’ll do what I can. If you haven’t been to Potfest, it is a clay-lover’s paradise and well worth a visit. As an incentive, if you mention the fact that you read this blog, I’ll give you 10% off any purchase of DSP pots!
So, this is what I have been doing, amongst other things.
Mixing up larger batches of glaze. The need to buy larger glaze buckets has been an indication of the increasing scale of my pots.
I’ve been given a small tub of wood ash and I’m excited about trying it out in a glaze.
And I have a friend back in the workshop. Actually, not the original friend but a close relation. I broke my treasured Lisa Hammond mug that I used everyday in the workshop and went to Earth and Fire recently in search of replacement. I found one, much to my delight.