A few favorites from past firings, and notes on why they are special to me!
New for 2019, I started making sets that include my ewers. The trays help pull together the various pieces, visually.
It was exciting to travel to Pawnee, IL to fire a kiln that I had helped to build at Simon Levin’s new home. I love the softness of the down-fired surface.
I started making these shallow bowls in 2016, and ran into major problems when firing them. They were too thick. Once I started making them thinner, then they didn’t like having a thin wall and a helfy lip. Then I adjusted how I fired them in the bisque kiln. Once they started to survive the initial firing, then they were loaded into a few firings where they just didn’t come out. Terrible surfaces. So… when I got a few out of this firing at Waubonsee, I was absolutely delighted!
Detail of a bowl
There is nothing like a good firing of tenmoku glaze in the wood kiln. The wood ash interacts with the iron in the glaze and does magical things! It bleaches it, or blushes blue, or creates tea dust— a term that describes golden flecks in the surface.
After my time at Waubonsee, I visited and fired various kilns to help inform my decision on what kind of kiln I wanted to build. This is a favorite from my firing with Dawn in central Illinois. I love how copper and tin blush purple in certain firing environments!
Fired at Waubonsee’s Wood Fire conference, this was a completely different surface than I had seen before on my work. The kiln was fired to temperature, but then slowly stoked with wood as it cooled— this is called reduction cooling. It leads to a rich, dark surface. My cup was fired inside a second cup, which gave the surface this landscape quality.
Hosting the conference and experiencing different firing styles was a fantastic experience!
Another piece from the wood fire conference at Waubonsee, the kiln was fired up to temperature, then water was trickled into the kiln to produce the contrast on the surface of the work. Trevor Dun looked like a mad scientist with the hose and funnel feeding into the hot kiln.
This is a glaze combination I started using in college. Shino as the base, and spray a matte copper glaze on top. This reminds me that I need to purchase an air compressor that works properly so I can make more of these!
I’m glad this one didn’t sell when it visited a gallery for a show. It’s my favorite for a generous cup of coffee in the morning. This mug was loaded too close to the firebox— you can see the glaze ran down the cup, and it was a mess to clean up the bottom. But the rivulet and color variation are worth it, in this case.