Saturday, May 4, 2013

'Plum' Tuckered

These guys love a tree with chartreuse and yellowish leaves or blooms.

Last weekend's firing was exhausting. What with trying to get the timing right on the reduction process and getting my kiln to even out and not go all 'bipolar' on me. Firing copper reds should be a right of passage for bonsai potters!

Malphighias, black olives, maples, and even fukien tea would be a good fit.

Copper reds, plums, liver pinks, call them what you will, it is the thrill of the chase that fuels a potter's passion.  Potters carefully plot scenarios for timing the beginning of the reduction process. They may ask themselves questions like: 'If I reduce now, will I lose temperature climb?' or 'Why am I getting good reduction here, but not there?' 'If my instrumentation shows a reduced atmosphere reading what it should be, why do I not see the characteristic visual signs of a typical reduction process?'

When I fire, I take tons of notes as prescribed by many a master.  Hard fact is, every firing is different. Every kiln load is packed differently. The top portion may be tighter, the bottom looser, or vice versa. I may have different conditions in the primary air than last time which could also affect how my burners are functioning. All must be taken into consideration.

Well, since the results are still good with the color of this particular glaze, I will keep at it. I love the chase, the nuance, the learning. Potters that fire copper reds will definitely understand the patience AND the practice of using this glaze. My hope is there will be a bonsai enthusiast who can appreciate the glaze color too!
If you look carefully you may be able to see some subtle texturing under the glaze.

Thanks for viewing.

Check out this technique!