This time, I played mostly with sodium silicate, to create a crackled effect, and the interactions with some stamps and small shape cutters. I was very happy with the results.
Here's a glance at a few of the new pieces, and the two I finished off from last time (back right corner) :
I like how that carved vase turned out. It was a vase I threw toward the end of last session, and the neck didn't turn out too well. But rather than cutting it off even, it inspired me to carve this flowing pattern into it. Here it is from another angle :
This is the first pot I threw :
I left a good amount of clay above the part I treated with sodium silicate, so I could add a proper neck to the vase, making it almost bottle shaped. I am so pleased with this piece in so many ways :
The second vessel also features the plum blossoms, but I applied turquoise slip before the sodium silicate :
Then I tried simple circles also, made with my hole cutter tools (the smaller of which I made in my Pottery Tools course last year) :
For fun, I tried one of my clay stamps, which wouldn't cut through the sodium silicate, but press and weaken that spot :
When pushed out, it also had a different, but pleasing result :
Then I decided to try white slip, and return to the plum blossoms again. It may be fun to underglaze/glaze the flowers on this one, in a bright colour like red :
And finally, I tried alternating panels of regular clay, with clay coated with sodium silicate and stamped. Here is the "before" photo :
I also had one pot which went badly off center, so I ended up making it completely wonky ("wabi sabi"), and will take another look at how to finish it next week. If it has good potential, I will trim it, but if not, I may just recycle the clay. It is a rare moment when I do that, but I need to learn how to allow myself that option sometimes.
I decided to force the pieces with the dryer, and try trimming some of them this week. Partly because I'm an impatient person, and I don't know what I may have moved onto next week, and partly because I figured this may give me good control over the dryness of the pieces. I dried the tops enough to flip them into a chuck, but left the bottoms quite wet. Even then, it was quite difficult to trim through the sodium silicate, which runs down and pools at the bottom of the vessel, no matter how much you try to apply only a light amount with the brush. I ended up pretty much cutting off the stiff outer layer with a pin tool before using my trimming tools to do the actual trimming.
Here is one of the pieces, after trimmed, with my signature double foot :
And another one, this one with a blurry photo :
And finally for tonight, here are the 4 finished pieces, left on the shelf in the drying cellar, where they should dry fairly slowly, considering the heavy rain we've been having these past few days :
Oh, and I try not to post photos of other student's work unless it is on exhibit, but I can't resist to post this beauty that I spotted in the drying cellar also. Wow. I love working in a place which is so full of inspiration - and great people, too.