Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Kiln Opening!

I woke up with a start at 2:30 am today thinking that I had forgotten to turn the kiln up to high before going to bed. I guess it's the potter's equivalent of worrying about whether or not the stove is off when you leave the house. There I was in the wee hours of the morning with my flashlight making my way out to the studio. The good news was that I had remembered to turn the kiln up to high and it had fired properly.

The bad news was that I forgot to close the top peephole. This is not so terrible, but it meant that the kiln took longer to get to cone and the pieces on the top shelf that were glazed in Pharsalia Blue were more tan than blue. (I like this glaze for exactly that reason, but most customers like the deeper blue.) One tray (on the far right of the photo) was more tan on the side facing the peephole and blue on the side farther from it, while another that was to the left of the peephole was dark blue because it was not directly in line with the source of cooler air.

I unloaded the kiln this afternoon, after spending a perfectly lovely morning glazing with Jane, Jennifer and Lynn. I don't usually use the words "lovely" and "glazing" in the same sentence; glazing is definately not my favorite endeavor, but any chore gets done quickly in good company!
I should have waited a bit more to unload but, as usual, I am impatient to see the results, especially since I had some new items in this load. Things don't usually go well when I'm impatient and that was the case this time. As I was removing the last shelf, one of the kiln posts got stuck to the bottom of it (this wouldn't have happened if the kiln had been cooler) and, of course, came off in mid-air, crashing down on one of my new pieces and breaking it. Not too happy with myself about that!


Anonymous said...

too bad about the kiln furniture accident... always worried about that myself. like the matte green glaze

Graciela Testa Lynt said...

Hi Jim: You can avoid that accident if you wait until the shelves are cool... which I didn't, of course! That matte green glaze is my all-time favorite! The recipe is in Zakin's Electric Kiln Ceramics book. It's called Pharsalia.

Docks-Pottery said...

Buongiorno Graciela, it's happened to me, bad luck? ortoo tired for work.If that can console you: your error gave me a chance to see the green glaze. I do not have the book, you can please show me the recipe Pharsalia. thanks so much