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Kiln opening

Opened the kiln after a two day wait . My initial feeling is always ' is that it ', but once I have unloaded everything and see them in a proper light I am happy with them . I think it's because they go into the kiln so different from what they then come back out .

One bowl has a bit of pinholing in it , which is annoying and strange as the one next to it , which had the same glaze application and was made from the same clay is ok , but hey that's just how it is . Pinholing is caused by gases either coming out of the clay or glaze at the final stages when the glaze has done all its fusing , and this one maybe cooled down a tiny bit quicker than its neighbour so the pinholes didn't get a chance to melt over ( they actually look like someone has stuck a pin into soft fudge ) .

A couple of wee pots on the bottom shelf had a bit of glaze crawling .This is where the glaze has pulled away from each other but these can be refired. This can be caused by a few things but it's my fault as it's the glaze application that causes it which makes it doubly annoying.

All the pots have shrunk down to their final size too , it's amazing to think about the changes the clay goes through , when they are made they are soft and manageable , the water in the clay then starts to evaporate and the become leather hard , so they get trimmed , handles popped on and decorated . They then dry out for days , making them very fragile. Off to the kiln then for a biscuit fire which makes them robust . If you can imagine a pumice stone in miniature this is what they are like now , when they get glazed all the glaze fills the wee holes and makes them solid again . Through this process the clay shrinks by about 2 cm , it's totally amazing ! And that's just one process , there are so many different ways to fire and decorate pots .

I fill a bowl with water and give each one a wash and wet sand with a fine grit sandpaper , this just takes off any wee bits that might've got stuck on , any bigger bits or a glaze run will get a dremel .

Another job that does need doing is to dremel some glaze marks off the shelves as I have to avoid them but it's easier said than done to actually get round to doing it !!

I had a few experiments in the kiln too so I am now thinking ahead to some more making . I have our local Open Studios coming up so it's a good opertunity to try a few things out . Got to tidy up too 😬

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