Monday, July 20, 2009

Swept Away

The reduction bin

My mind has been far away on raku firing. The whole concept just grabbed me and intoxicated me badly. I must admit that if I lived in the country this whole process would be much easier. Set up the raku kiln, have the propane either delivered to the house or pick it up yourself at Walmart and walla....pretty raku things to share in no time.

But its not like that here and carting propane around in a car on a busy city street (with road rage lurking at every street light) just isn't my kind of fun thing to take my chances on. So...I decided to further pursue this "raku with an electric kiln" thing cause I can't make the urge stop and I'm determined to make it work. I don't care if my elements burn out, I must continue on this adventure. It's pulling me strongly for whatever reason. I have been swept away.

My favorite vessel today

Today was probably the most exciting day I've ever had glaze wise. I pulled this blue beauty of a vessel from the reduction bin and nearly fainted!! I've never had such pretty results, even when I plotted and planned carefully. Something always went haywire in the glaze stage.

As one vessel was coming out, another one was being prepped in my bigger kiln in the studio. Heating them slowly on low with the Caldera S eliminated the explosions. I figured out a cool and seamless system for myself and I can honestly say I am in love with my new Paragon Quickfire. It cools down fast and heats up even faster! Prop it open and let it cool. It's like it was made for this kind of work. No pings or pops or anything of the sort as I opened the "hut lid". It's happy to work and I raku fired all day long without any issues. Of course, "Spanky" as he has been named, is small, but I don't care! I'll take it!!

This blue is so metallic

An afternoon of raku firin
and swimming

So out came all the stoneware vessels I never got the urge to glaze. They, along with every badly glazed piece is waiting for a swashing of raku glaze. I was able to save two really crummy vessels today with this raku process and I'm excited! It's as if the fire is magic and everything just turns out cool in the end.

I could go on and on talking but I'll end with the sweetest photo of the day. My son and my dog Kiko relaxing in the dog days of summer. My dog is finally coming around and accepting my son. Up until about a month ago she just didn't want any part of him. I'm happy to see them playing now. So happy!

The dog days of summer

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