Sometimes the glazes we use are good for one purpose, but not so good for another. A glaze might perform well when dipping or pouring, but dry so quickly when brushed the it’s nearly impossible to get an even coat. Glaze additives are the secret ingredients that can help remedy these problems. In today’s post, from the PMI archives, our own Jessica Knapp puts additives to the test. – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.
p.s.-This article appeared in the November/December 2011 issue of Pottery Making Illustrated. To buy this back issue in PDF format, click here!
Commercial underglazes are basically clay slips containing colorants, and they’re a great way to add color to your work using a variety of application methods. And since they’re formulated to have low drying shrinkage, they can be applied to bone-dry greenware or to bisque-fired surfaces. In addition to being able to change the surface color of your clay body, underglazes can also be used to change the texture of the body.
Though fired to the same temperatures (about 1472°F/800° C), raised enamels differ from china paints in that they have more body and leave a raised line. They are a mixture of low-fire frit, clay and tin oxide. While china paint suppliers carry them premixed, DeMaine prefers to make her own.
In majolica glazing an even coat of the base glaze is desirable because it acts as a canvas for the decoration. In today’s post, an excerpt from her DVD Majolica Glazing: Creating Colorful Surfaces, Linda Arbuckle explains how she tests her glazes and makes sure they are properly flocculated to ensure even coverage. Even if you do not do majolica, this advice can be helpful in other glazing situations.
In today’s post, David Gamble discusses a red hot topic for many a ceramic artist: how to achieve reliable red glazes. If you have ever tried to formulate a red glaze, you know how difficult it can be. And even if you buy commercial red glazes, you understand that they need a certain amount of attention and precision paid to them during application and firing.
In this feature, one educator and potter, Lisa Bare Culp, explains how she discovered the advantages of exploring commercial glazes, and how some of her previous attitudes changed in the process. The results are not only seen in wider options for her work and her students work, but projects for you to try as well. Enjoy!
When potter John Britt was approached by Lindsey Elsey, a student who was looking for a research partner on a study of Peach Bloom glazes, he gladly signed on. Six hundred test tiles later, John and Lindsey uncovered some of the secrets to developing gorgeous peach bloom surfaces. In this excerpt from the October 2010 issue of Ceramics Monthly, they share the results of their research, and a bunch of Peach Bloom glaze recipes.
Tiny Teapots, Big Impact: Fong Choo Combines Wheel Throwing, Handbuilding and Layering Commercial Glazes to Make Compact Teapots that Pack a Punch
Fong Choo makes tiny teapots but, visually, they are anything but small. Fong successfully integrates the form with the surface to make elegant little works of art. The teapots bodies are thrown and altered on the wheel, and then embellished with handbuilt handles, feet, and spouts. Then Fong layers commercial glazes to get amazing surfaces. Today he explains his technique in detail, including his secret to taking commercial glazes to the next level.