You might remember I've been on a flower clay kick of late! Well today I'm showing you two more I've finished!
Unfortunately for the guy above, one of his petals broke off during the bisque firing stage. I could have glued it, painted it with glazes and hoped that it stayed together through the power of the melted glaze but I didn't. Since the break was one of the outside petals it most likely would have fallen off once the temps got too high for the glue to withstand and then stuck to the kiln shelf.
So I did some cold glaze research, which simple refers to finishes that don't require a re-fire. I bought a bunch of little pots of car enamel and some different varnishes and pastels and tried some different techniques on scraps of fired clay. My favourite technique turned out to be filling a bowl with water and adding in some drops of acrylic paint and then dipping the piece randomly into it. I think it turned out pretty but I can see why most ceramic artists stick with using kiln fire paints and glazes, although unpredictable, when they work they can elevate a piece to the next level. Also, the gloss when heated to high kiln temps turns into this magical glass like application something I feel, normal varnish can compete with.
Which you can hopefully see on the inside of this flower guy below.
The magical clear gloss glaze!
I actually painted the outside solidly using a shiny brown glaze, it turned out more brown then shiney though and because I'm stubborn and people tell me it can't be done I spent a good few hours with my dremel removing the outside paint job. As I was chipping away the paint, little bits were left which I actually loved so I made an effort to leave some little splotches :)
Also this was the first time playing around with pencils designed to withstand kiln temps. Definitely an expensive pencil but if you were to use an ordinary pencil the graphite would simply burn out and you'd be left with no markings.
Things I Discovered:
*cold glazes are a fun alternative but kiln fires glazes are still my fav
*you can remove a fired glaze off a piece using a Dremmel but if takes a lot of effort and time!
* ceramic pencils are pretty cool :)
Ben is nearly finished his school year (finishing prematurely to go back to work in the desert) so I'm trying to finish my last few clay pieces that I have on the go. I'm finally off my flower kick and getting into a few more fun sculptural pieces whcih I can't wait to share!!