Sunday, January 30, 2011

Portfolio Photography Cassius Basaltic Clay 5

Six cups. These cups all have a white slip I made on the interior of the cup with a clear glaze ontop of the slip.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Portfolio Photography Cassius Basaltic Clay 4


Three cups.

Some things to keep in mind when using this clay.

1. When it starts to dry (before the leather hard state) just leave it alone. Do not add a slip at this time, the clay will obsorb the moisture from the slip and just fall apart. If you try to manipulate it, even by just a little amount the clay will crack.

2. When applying slip to the clay don't put it on to thick and put on the slip before it is leahter hard.

3. When bisqueing the clay, I would take it to Cone 04 and hold it at the temperature for at least 60 minutes for the gasses in the clay to offgas. Then once you go to do your final firing do it in an oxidation fire and only up to a max of cone 5. Otherwise the clay will start to bloat.

4. For a general all purpose glaze I would use my friends liner glaze (I will try and get the recipe from my friend Jamie Kirkpatrick) This glaze is great for a wide range or temperatures. Because of this the glaze stays in a molten (liquid state) from a low temperature. This lets any excess offgassing from the clays to get through and not cause any "moon" cratering in the glaze.

This is the glaze that was used on the inside of the cups above. I just left the outside of the cups with no finish, it is just the clay body itself.

I have another ceramic artist friend, Matt Allison, who uses the Cassius Basaltic clay as well. He will use a water downed version of a clear glaze as a finish on his pieces. But this is only after doing the long bisque as described above.

Also, from my research I have found that this clay after firing is food safe. There seems to be no manganese in the clay. But there are other black clays out there that have manganese in them, so be careful.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Portfolio Photography Cassius Basaltic Clay 3


Here is a small leaf bowl. This design still needs work. What I was trying to do with this piece is take some of my blacksmithing knowledge and apply it to clay. So all of these ceramic leaves have been forged out with a small hammer as I would with steel.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Portfolio Photography Cassius Basaltic Clay 2



One of my cooking clay pots with a lid that then becomes a bowl to eat from. I want to do some more of these.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Portfolio Photography Cassius Basaltic Clay 1

Just recently I started using this Cassius Basaltic Clay. And I love it. How dark it can get reminds me a lot of steel. But it is hard to find a glaze to work well with the clay. The clay has a lot of gasses that come off of it when fired. And it has to be fired in an oxidizing fire, usually in an electric kiln.

Here is a bowl with a jagged edge. I am surprised that the jagged lip survived through firing.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 8

My sagar fired candle holder. One thing I learned while photographing this piece is wax get everywhere. You really need to dust/clean up the matte before shooting stuff once wax or crumbly items are involved. Otherwise you are going to spend a lot of time in photoshop cleaning up dust and wax bits.

I had fun when I blew out the candles. I will have to play with smoke in some later photo shoots.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 7

Here is another candle holder. This one holds 3 little votive candles. When creating these I was trying out some ideas. Actually something I have wanted to do with metal. I still need to play with this design some more.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 6


Here is a candle holder. I was playing with a shape and how it transforms in the 3 dimensions. This was just one of many experiments.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 5




5 cups of Sagaaaar. Sorry couldn't resist. Here 5 different sagar fired little cups I did. I still think the middle one is the best.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 5



A tiny cup with some good markings. I love how the sagar fired pieces vary dramatically on all sides.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 4


Another container with a lid, but this one is larger.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 3

My two containers with lids. I had fun making these. You can see from the black lines where I wrapped some bronze wire around the vessel before firing them.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 2

My sagar fired cup. Had some decent marking generated.

Portfolio Photography Sagar fire pieces 1


Another double post day. Life got busy yesterday and I forgot to post to my blog again.

Now I am going to be starting with some of my sagar fired work. Sagar fire is where you smooth/polish the pieces before firing. You then take those ceramic items and place them in a bigger container that can be sealed off. That container is filled with combustible items (ie sawdust, seaweed, salt, horse hair, banana peals, etc.). You can wrap the ceramic pieces with different items as well (ie, copper, brass, bronze, steel wire or mesh, etc.) These sealed containers are then placed in a gas kiln and fired just hot enough to combust the sawdust,etc so that is smokes. These creates the different patterns on the ceramic pieces.

This is a taller container where I played with the handle. I actually had other pieces inside this container as well. Think container within a container within another container.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 14


A couple of wood fired cups. These are made from two clays thrown together to give the swirl effect.

Portfolio Photography Wood Fire Pieces 13

I completely ran out of time to post a blog yesterday. So I will be posting two today.

Here is the first, a wood fired mug that got hammered pretty good with ash. This is because of its location near the front of the kiln. You can see how the flames from the wood fire were wrapping around the mug. The left side of the mug was facing the flames and you can see the transition from the more matte crusty glazing to the blue reflective glazing.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood Fire Pieces 12

Soup anyone? These are a couple of soup bowl mugs. They came out a little dry in a couple of places because of their location near the back of the train kiln.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 11



Three bowls wood fired made of two types of clay thrown together (the two clays create the swirl effect). I had fun photographing these bowls. Here are just two of the better shots I took.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 10

Here is a set of five sake or shot glasses. I use them for both personally. They all received a good degree of flashing and wood ash.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 9

Sake on my mind. You would think after posting all of these sake sets I would at least be drinking some. But first you have to get some. I will have to do that the next time I am at the store.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 8

I have a few more sake sets to post, all from the same wood fire. I enjoy this shape and the way it feels in your hand as you pour sake. I will have to do a few more.

Friday, January 07, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 7

You thought the sake sets were over with but think again. Here is another wood fired sake set. For its placement in the kiln, further towards the back, it got a good amount of wood ash.

Just to recap, all of these most recent posts are artwork done by me and photographed by me (with my new lights, 3 Paul C. Buff Einsteins).

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 6

Here is a small wood fire pitcher. This piece received some nice flashing and good ash on the opposite side (photo below).

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 5

One last sake set that was right up in the front spot of the kiln and got hammered with ash.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 4

The third sake set, also wood fired near the middle of the kiln. I am also showing a detail shot of three sake cups. There is a glaze for the inside of the cups and sake bottle but the outside is all from the wood ash.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 3

Another Sake set that has been wood fired. This set was about in the middle of the kiln. It received some flashing and ash. The body is thrown from two types of clay and that is what the spiral effect is coming from.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 2

A sake set that was wood fired 2 years ago. These were about in the middle of the train kiln, a little towards the front. They both got some very good wood ash on them.

It is amazing how different the wood ash glazing effect can happen in a kiln. As I post more photos you will see that difference.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Portfolio Photography Wood fire pieces 1

There at the last week of December 2010, I used my new studio lights to capture all of my ceramic and some of my metal work. Through the month of January I will be posting a photo of each piece photographed.

I will start the new year off with some of my wood fire ceramic pieces. This is one of my tea bowls that was up front near the fire box and got hammered by the wood ash.