Arrgghhh! Made three big beautiful platters — and I mean BIG! They were all trimmed, almost dried, and I applied slip to the middle (was going to paint trees around the rim). The two largest cracked. I thought the first one cracked because of the way I flipped it over, and I thought to myself “two out of three ain’t bad”. Then the second one cracked and I thought — bloody hell!
This is not a new process I’m doing. I’ve done it many times before — made a lovely large platter … used slip to color it, and then used the piece as a canvas. But, this is the first time I’ve tried to do it on this particular cone 6 porcelain (which comes out a absolutely stunningly beautiful white). You may have heard my ARRGGGHHH from where-ever you are! Goes to show you that even when you think you know what you’re doing things have a way of doing what they’re going to do …
What did I learn? Well, you can get away with almost anything with cone 6 speckled stoneware, and that’s what I’ve made these pieces out of before. Now I know that on the bigger pieces with this white clay I’m just going to have to bisque fire them first, and then use underglazes instead of slip. At least that’s my thinking at this point. These platters were of a consistent thickness and well balanced. All I can think of is that it doesn’t like to be wet once it’s set. Good to know. Wish I’d known on a smaller piece!
So it’s back to the drawing board, and more throwing. Good thing I like throwing!
In the meantime, if you’d like to see some of my work that actually MADE it through the process … visit the UnGallery in Picton. Or, come and see me on Saturday at the Colborne Art Gallery. I’ll be there 2-4.
I guess no actual hari kari for me today. I’m not that crazy about sharp objects or piercing my own skin. More pots make it through the process than don’t — but I can’t wait for the alignment of the stars in the heaven’s to change! Enough already!