As we all know, in ceramics, trial and error is an integral part of the learning process – and often it can feel like mostly error. But it’s the way it goes with this medium, and each little bit of wisdom these little failures yield, gets us closer to success.Peter Karner developed his surface decoration… Read More »
Gas Kiln Firing
Gas kilns are the most popular type of fuel kilns used today. If you’re looking for a way to add a whole different dimension to your ceramic art then you’ll want to investigate gas kiln firing. With gas firing, you can control the atmosphere your work is exposed to, which directly affects the final outcome of your glazes and clay bodies. Here you’ll find expert advice from ceramic artists and potters who use gas kiln firing to add a unique dimension to their work. Whether you choose an updraft or downdraft kiln, your work is large or small, a gas firing kiln can be tailored to meet your needs and expand your possibilities. And if you are looking for glaze recipes to fire in your gas kiln, don't forget to download your free copy of A Guide to Ceramic Kilns: Choosing the Right Kiln Firing Method and Design For Your Art, a perfect resource for potters and ceramic artists who are ready to experiment with custom glazes, or for those who have grown tired of their own tried and true glazes.
Though gas kilns are not as ubiquitous as electric kilns these days, there are still many potters and ceramic artists who rely on them to create the wonderful effects created in a reduction, salt, or soda atmosphere. Most anyone can figure out how to mix gas and air to produce heat in a kiln…. Read More »
It used to be thought that crystalline glazes were only possible in an oxidation atmosphere. But as many more potters become seduced by these intriguing glazes, new and exciting discoveries – including developing crystals in reduction – are being made all the time. In today’s post, crystalline potter Diane Creber explains the basics of… Read More »
Saggar firing was originally developed to protect wares from ash-slagging and flame-flashing in wood firings, but in contemporary use, with clean-burning gas firings, the process is used in exactly the opposite way: to contain fumes around a pot so that the pot to picks up color from the fumes. Saggars are the lidded containers used… Read More »
Significant cost savings can be realized by potters without access to a landfill through a variety of strategies and fuel choices. These can be divided into categories and discussed in terms of benefits and difficulties. Solid fuels are difficult, liquid fuels are moderate, and gases are easier.
Initially, I placed a 30-gallon plastic barrel outside one such diner that had agreed to save the used oil for me. My plan was to swap out the barrel every five weeks (the owner predicted it would take that long to fill the barrel) and replace it with an empty 30-gallon barrel. I learned two facts immediately: First, I couldn’t lift the full barrel of oil onto the back of my pick-up truck. Secondly, used, hot oil will melt plastic barrels.
Firing Atmospheres Glaze Recipe for “Modified Ohata Khaki” Atmospheric Controls What is perfect combustion? The description in the North American Combustion Handbook is rather simple: Perfect combustion exists when one carbon atom is combined with two atoms of oxygen to form one carbon dioxide molecule, plus heat. But when you are firing a kiln… Read More »
At EnergyXchange, in Burnsville, North Carolina, methane gas from a former landfill is collected by an underground system of vents and fed to the above ground distribution valve (foreground). The gas is then used to fire ceramic kilns and gas furnaces and to heat studios (background). After running Wednesday’s feature on Practicing Safe Raku, a… Read More »
This week, we will take a look at how Carcia uses terra sigillata, vegetation, oxides and salts to make her vividly colored work.