Monday, June 2, 2008

Still Firing....

But it seems like a day of rest.  I'm used to firing day meaning getting ready to spray some soda in the kiln, dump some salt in and wait while it works it's way through the kiln.  There is no up close and personal feeling with this firing.  I'm not getting the sprayer right in through the ports.  I'm not watching the pots glow and see how things change when the soda and water are introduced into the kiln.  This seems easy....almost cheating....if I don't think of the huge amount of work that went into getting the pots in the kiln in the first place.

I've already mopped the floor of the glaze area which ended up with more glaze than some of the pots.  I used to make 80 lb batches of glaze in big garbage cans.  It was great because not only did it make for mixing glazes less often but it also meant glazing medium sized pieces was still easy as I could dip them.  The past couple of years I have switched to the trusty 5 gallon pail.  If these new glazes work out I'll probably mix up a few large batches of them for the next firing.  I would much rather be able to dip a large platter than either pour the glaze over it or take it outside to spray it....and my yard.  Not to mention the fact that it seems like half of the pitcher full of glaze that I pour ends up on the floor....even when I try to pour it over a bigger bucket.  I noticed in a picture from Michael's blog a while back it looked like he had a nice compromise of sizes....I especially like his rig to put the bucket at a good height for glazing.  As everyone knows, we do enough to our backs to have to reach down to glaze our pots.  

I guess this is the waiting time when I start thinking of not just the pots but of the process and more importantly my methods.  What can I do to make my pots better?  What can I do to make things go more smoothly within the studio?  Which methods worked, which ones made things easier and which ended up making things more difficult?  What's next?

If I didn't have so many questions I guess I wouldn't be heading back in the studio for more answers.  

Time to check some cones.  


Anonymous said...

Looking forward to your Wednesday night blog.

brandon phillips said...

my point of view is that if you're not thinking that way its probably time for something else.

have you seen joe bennion's "potters meal" film? there is a part where he talks about the work he used to make and said there was a point where the kiln had been cooled for several days and he had no interest in unloading it. thats always been a sort of inspiration for me, to make pots that you're always excited about and always want to improve upon. i keep meaning to respond to your email, i'll get to it soon!