Supplemental to FiringLog: Cress 1814.1

Supplemental to FiringLog: 1814.1

What was Loaded in the Firing

When did I make these?  The fact that they are bisque fired tells me that it was likely at the end of my senior year OR during the one semester of Post-Bac – I really have no idea but it was close to 6 years ago either way.

Naturally, if you need to test your kiln, and you have these just lying around – well, why NOT fire them and just see what happens?  Worst case scenario – you might have to grind a few shelves since you didn’t test your glazes properly.  Should you do this? No.  Did I? Absolutely.

Why not is discussed later with the results LOL



    • • Mystery Cone 6 Plum: This came with my large kiln that I purchased from a local potter that was retiring.  All I really know is that it is labelled Plum Cone 6… Hoping that is right…but I really have no idea – thus my snap to my daughter about doing some shady shit!  To be fair, I sieved it through 60 and 80 mesh after rehydrating it – so that is something.
    • • Val’s Turquoise Test Batch: Yes, I know this defeats the purpose of a test batch if I am just going to slap it on some pots…don’t come at me – I literally haven’t fired anything in 6 years and was amped up and willing to take the risk.
    • To keep the iron glazes from contaminating, I poured some into the lid and brushed it on if it overlapped.  I have made this glaze before – just 6 years ago!

    • • Amaco’s Potter’s Choice Smokey Merlot: Straight from the bottle after shaking it – tried to do 3 coats each time.
    • • Kitten’s Clear: Okay, I went shady again.  This is a cone 6 glaze, and I have tested it…but this little test batch had been sitting for 6 years, and I did not sieve it -probably should have.  From what I remember, this wasn’t as true of a clear as I was after (It went cloudy over the Amaco Black Velvet underglaze). In hindsight, (After all, I have had 6 years to think about it.) I probably just needed to put it on much thinner.  Did I heed my own advice? Also, no.



BOTTOM SHELF – The two mugs that lost their handles:

There were a lot of issues with these forms to begin with – most of the handles were slightly detached which tells me that I probably dried them too fast when I made them or attached the handles too late.  Two handles came off so I am making these into little plant pots for Midori.  I will have to drill a hole in the bottoms post firing. Glazed with Mystery Cone 6 Plum (inside and out since they will be non-functional) and added Val’s Turquoise on the rim and as some random accents – hoping for a miracle. The others that were just slightly separating, I used kitten clear to put glaze in the separations…probably not the best solution to be honest.  But, it is not like I am out anything if they are terrible!

Post Firing Reflection: Wait for it….

Yep, poo brown.  Sooo, yeah this glaze is going to be fired in a bowl and thrown away along with all the others that I got from this potter… LOL I knew better haha… but like, it would have been cool if it had been maybe a little less poo brown. 

First mug to go in the kiln!  This was loaded on the bottom Shelf with the two above and the 8 test tiles and mug #2. Glazed with: Val’s inside and then dipped into  Mystery Cone 6 Plum – 1 Dip (probably should have done more?).  Since this was a functional pot, I kept the Mystery Plum to the outside and added a little more Val’s to cover any gaps I missed and for a bit of flair…

Post Firing Reflection: At least the Val’s interacted in a slightly interesting way and also good to know and the Val’s portion inside looks great.  This was for sure the clay that had metal inclusions though.  There are little pops all over these forms – so I will most likely break all of them and throw them out.

Mug #2: Again, Vals on inside, but this time, Smokey Merlot Brushed with three layers on exterior – and a little flair with the Smokey Merlot on the inside as well 🙂

Post Firing Reflection: Better than a start contrast of the two glazes, they do overlap well.  I would like to have done something a little more dynamic though.  Is it usable – maybe for personal use, but not something I would sell for sure. The issue with the metal in the clay is the biggest thing here – and it is just kinda ugly.  Sorry, not sorry.

TOP SHELF – Mug #3: Kitten’s Clear Brushed inside (too thick) – Smokey Merlot on interior (brushed) with some Val’s on the rim for flair.

Post Firing Reflection: Not terrible.  The Smokey Merlot is very pretty and I should have been more generous with the Val’s over it, again, in a more dynamic way.  The liner glaze testing was a bust – that Kitten’s Clear is not a good fit for this clay – it is crazing at the bottom in side the mug, and I am still hearing pings 2 days later.  Not food safe technically since bacteria can become trapped in the tiny cracks in the glaze. Could I use it for personal use, probably…

Mug #4: Kitten Clear (poured and swirled out) on interior – Smokey Merlot brushed on exterior – Val’s on rim again.

Post Firing Reflection: Much like the last one, I pretty much did the exact same thing.  No difference in grazing with application method of Kitten’s Clear on this clay.  I really do think it is the clay – it was one I made in undergrad and it was really tight once fired. Probably more of a Cone 4 or 5 clay…

Mug #5: Smokey Merlot brushed on interior – Mystery Plum n exterior – I went ahead and dipped the lip in the mystery plum – probably shouldn’t have but I will keep that one to slowly poison myself if it is usable – or break it and chuck in the garbage.

Post Firing Reflection: Poop, poop, poooooop.  Note to self, listen to self.  

Mug #6: Smokey Merlot brushed on interior – Val’s on exterior and partial on interior as well.

Post Firing Reflection: You can really see the variegation that occurs with the Val’s and Smokey Merlot on the interior on this one. Still, too stark of a contrast between the two colors with it being mainly blocked to just one surface or the other.  Not great.

Top Shelf all settled in with a cone pack – I swear I took a picture of the lower shelf, but it is MIA.

My two little cone packs 🙂 

Post Firing Reflection: I need to take photos of the post firing kiln packs.  It looks like I hit a solid Cone 7.  I definitely did not need that 5 minute hold, and if anything, it could have used maybe 5 minutes less overall!  I will have to figure out how to do the cone offset on this kiln if it starts creating issues. 

  1. Overall, I have made some decisions stemming from this firing:
    1. 1. I am going to ceremoniously destroy all these terrible pots. I know this makes people upset because “they are so beautiful” (Blatant lie BTW, and I know you mean well, but that makes your opinion literally worth nothing to me…so something to think about).
    2. 2. I am not going to waste my time on these mystery glazes.
    3. 3. I am also not going to waste my time on this old clay.  

These are good things.  It means I can move on.  So, my goal by this weekend is to clear out the old and bring in the new.

Speaking of which…I need to also sort all the boobs – get the ones that need re-fired in the kiln, and the ones that don’t, need to come inside for a photo sesh.  I think I have been so hesitant on selling these because I have this thought in the back of my head that they will somehow be needed one day to prove my skill or something or to show again. THIS IS RIDICULOUS.  I need to move on.  That ship has sailed.  I am not saying I am not going to continue to explore the form, but with so many like items all over Etsy and Instagram, I need to work on trying to find my current voice. Will that be boobs?  Maybe.  Maybe not.