We had a great day on Saturday 14th July. Some fantastic looking pots and a lot of fun. Some trials were done on the new naked Raku slip – I have another round of trials on the next firing and will hopefully have a better cracking effect.
Another Raku firing is planned for Saturday September 8th 10am start – so plenty of time to get your pots ready.
There will be a box on the bench marked “Raku ready to Bisque” – put your pots in here by / on Tuesday 21st August – this will give us time to bisque your pots ready for Saturday 8th September. If you already have some pots and you want to give it a go – come along.
If you are in a class and would like me to come along and show you some of our results / questions - just give me an email and I will pop in. firstname.lastname@example.org
Please give me an email if you are planning to come along on Sat 8th Sept so I can plan.
Raku Ready – pots
Making your pot / vessel - The number one key that Averill advised to get the best result was – Ensure your pot is smooth – burnishing your pot when it is bone dry.
If you want a textured look for your Raku then disregard making it smooth.
Burnishing Tools - Any very smooth object can potentially be used as a burnishing stone. Many potters use rubber or plastic ribs for burnishing, particularly on leather hard pots. The back of a spoon is a popular tool, though it may leave greyish marks on the clay. Make sure you do not sand your pots, even prior to burnishing.
Apply Terra Sigillata - When your pot is bone dry and dust free – apply 4-5 layers of Terra sigillata. Terra sigillata gives it a glazed, shinny look, obviously disregard if you do not want this look. This will be available at the pottery rooms for you to use.
Terra sigillata is an ultra refined clay slip that can give a soft sheen when applied to bone-dry wares and, if polished or burnished while still damp, may give a high gloss.
Bisque your pot – your pot is now ready for Raku and/or Naked Raku.
An Obvara Pot for Christmas?
I am really keen to give this a go – if we can get a few people we can do this one Raku Saturday. Looks like great fun
The obvara firing process, which originated in Eastern Europe around the 12th Century, involves scalding the finish on the pottery to seal the porous surface. Similar to the raku pottery process, a bisqued pot is heated, (899°C) and removed from the heat. The difference is that the pot is then dipped into a specific obvara yeast mixture before being dunked in water to rapidly cool the piece. The effects are quite stunning.
We had a great saturday Raku last week with Leigh-Anne as our leader; we will be having another one soon (probably the 10th Aug) so keep a look out for this information. Saturday 4th, first of the month club morning with Anne,come and pot in the rooms.
August demonstration sprig club night is cancelled but those of us who had pots in the wood firing at Halswell will be bringing their pots to show and discuss; all welcome for a catch-up. So, not the usual club night but you might have some ideas for bowl making for our September 11th 'swap a bowl' night and fill it with Delicious soup and bread all made by our pottery 🍜chef's . I think we have at least three bread bakers, but the more the merrier!
Some of the members took part in a wood firing at Halswell potters group this week end, Saturday, all day, it’s great fun with lots of smoke and flames and general excitement. Some photo's below; come and see the results of the firing on Tuesday 14th club night.
Bisque pots on the shelf: there are a few of the members bisqued pots on the shelf by the windows. These are the first names or marks of the works: Nic, EB,Chris, Sam, mm, wa, LL. We would appreciate that they be paid for and taken away asap as our new term has started and we need the space. If they are still there in a week we will dispose of them. It is a good idea to keep and eye on your work as you have put in the hard work not for them to be disposed of.
The usual club days and nights; continue please support these nights as you can always learn from someone else who might have a good idea or a great way of throwing.
Cheers, your Committee
The Secretary and Members - Mt Pleasant Pottery Group.