Thursday, March 28, 2013

Firing a load... pins and needles

I am firing my first full load of glazed Lizella pieces. I'm on pins and needles and will be until I open the kiln. I have some pieces in there that I really love. I'm concerned that the glaze may have seeped too far into the clay, that I might not have let it dry enough between glaze coats, that the glaze may not interact with the clay the way I want, that I may have the glaze on too thick in areas...


I'm not a worry-wart type so I'm not going to spend the next few days fretting and worrying, but it's going to be in the back of my mind.

Every kiln load is a learning experience. I don't want this one to be a bad learning experience!

It's kind of funny. I can remember when I first moved from paint to clay. I was so timid. I felt like every little scrap of clay that dried out was money down the drain. The cost of glaze seemed prohibitive. I was amazed at the cost of kilns, brushes, tools, books, classes.

If a piece didn't turn out well I was bummed. I saved my mistakes thinking maybe I'd figure out a way to fix them someday (ha ha).

Now I have a pottery garden comprised of plants and all those mistakes, broken pieces, pots with pitted or runny glazes and other strange experiments I simply didn't like. I reclaim clay when I can and add it to the soggy area next to the studio when I can't (it's amazing how long a piece of dried clay will retain its shape!). My glaze collection, along with all the additions, is extensive and I only think about cost when I do something stupid like drop a bottle or forget to put a lid back.

Lizella is making me feel like a first time potter again. Who'da thunk it would be such a big learning experience?

This first load is low-fire. I'm working on finishing up the next load which will be mid-fire.

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