Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Really Ready to Raku - Next Week

Today was the first of two raku firing sessions, except we didn't do any firing, since there is construction going on near the raku kiln.  So we just prepared a number of our pieces, and will fire all of them next week.

I prepared two pieces for saggar firing, using various organic materials, and some metals, such as bottle caps and copper from a kitchen scrubber.  Here is the first pot being prepared :
Hand thrown pottery vase prepared for saggar raku firing.
The bottle cap is from one of my favourite drinks, the Old Tyme Jamaican Style Ginger Beer.  It has a nice bite to it, but is also very sweet and delicious to drink.

This is the second pot being prepared for saggar firing :
Hand thrown pottery vase prepared for saggar raku firing.
This one had a few fresh rhodo flowers tied to it, as well as horsetails (I have thousands in my garden).

We also prepared one piece for naked raku firing.  Mine was finished in turquoise terra sig, and will feature a black top and bottom, and black stripes which were created by taping off those lines.
Ceramic hand thrown pottery vase prepared with sacrificial slip for naked raku firing.

Ceramic vase prepared with sacrificial slip for naked raku firing.

We also prepared some pieces for glazing.  I am making some pendants, with taped off patterns, and various glaze colours in between:
Ceramic pendants taped off for glazing and raku firing.

Ceramic pendants glazed and ready for raku firing.
Since the pieces are small, my instructor Linda provided a wire basket which we will use to remove them from the kiln and place them in the combustibles.

We have been told to wear full shirts with long sleeves next week, for the firing, and no polyester or fleece or other fibers which would melt from the heat of the raku kiln.  So I actually stopped at a thrift store today and picked up a rayon button up top, since I don't have any full long sleeves, and the 3/4 sleeve tops I have are all polyester or other man made fibers.

So I had to do some quick reading about rayon.  Even though it is man made, it is created from cellulose in trees, so it is based on a natural source, even though the fiber itself is artificially created.  So hopefully I'll be okay.  The alternative would have been to steal one of my husband's cotton dress shirts.  Too bad we just donated a large bag of his shirts to a thrift store last week.  Although I think this rayon shirt will look a lot better on me.  It is a Chico's shirt, so a good brand.  I will probably only wear it the once, and then can donate it back to that thrift shop.  So a good deal for everyone.

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