Potter’s translation of a long weekend…

STUDIO WEEKEND! 

This long weekend (Queen’s birthday) didn’t go entirely to plan. We were meant to head to my Uncle’s farm and spend some time helping out. Thursday’s kiln opening put a spanner into that plan…..

For whatever reason, the soak cycle didn’t cut off and the result was blistered and bubbled wares! If there is an upside, it was only the small kiln so the remake list wasn’t as long as it could have been if this had happened with the big kiln. Still brutely disappointing but there was that silver lining. I geared myself up for a big production day on Friday, hopeful I could get everything remade but it wasn’t meant to be. It was a much cooler day so it took longer for items to dry (even with the help of the oven to dry things) than I was counting on. So we decided to postpone our visit to the farm for another weekend and the weekend transformed into a epic studio session.

Got quite a few custom orders finalised and loaded the middle kiln up with wares for a bisque firing late last night. Talk about a productive weekend!! Going from no stock to full kiln tested out my studio space and it seemed like every available flat space in our house was holding ceramic wares by 5pm Monday.

Last week I spent a bit of time mixing new glazes. From 8 base glazes, I should have 70 different blends coming out of the kiln this week (fingers crossed). Making new glazes is very exciting – I love developing and tweaking recipes!!!

Oh, and I’ve been playing around with a blue speckle glaze for a custom order – here’s a photo of one of the blends I’ve done on an old TAFE recipe…

Servant Ceramics_Glaze test

I also played around with a new photography tent. Still haven’t got a full handle on it yet but here’s a sneaky image of our gold range to tide you over. I’m hoping to have the vases and bowls listed in the online store asap but I’m not the greatest photographer so these things take more time than they probably should 😛

Servant Ceramics_ Gold grouping_web

Hope you had a great long weekend!
With a big smile for you, Rachel.

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3 thoughts on “Potter’s translation of a long weekend…

    1. Hi Caroline! A soak (or hold/dwell) usually indicates a period of time where you try to hold the kiln at a certain temperature. For some people, this means slowing the rate right down so it takes longer than usual to hit temperature or for others it’s simply hovering around a temperature for 15-60mins. I usually have a half hour soak at the end of my stoneware firings hoping to even out the heatwork throughout the kiln and ensure that all pieces have actually matured and hit temperature (since the different areas of the kiln can record different temperatures – top can be ‘hotter’ than bottom, back can be cooler than front). Some glazes are quite particular and even the difference of one cone (20 degrees) can impact their finish.

      Sometimes with a reduction firing, certain glazes can respond well to an oxidation soak right at the end 🙂

      Does that make any sense?

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