Friday, 2 March 2012

Pots can definitely grow on you

I made this little pot some time ago now, and I've glaze-fired it three times..once in reduction and twice in oxidation. Each time I wasn't really satisfied with the finish and brushed on another layer of glaze, and even when I took it out of the kiln last time, it didn't strike me as being particularly attractive. It's been knocking around in my workshop for several months, and I kept picking it up, turning it round, putting it down, wondering whether I should bother to put it in for a fourth firing.

Carved pot with ochre-ash glaze, 3.5 inches tall

Then the other day I took it outside and looked at it more closely. In the bright daylight I could better appreciate the subtle sheen of the ochre-ash glaze which contrasts with the harsher mottled areas of burned-out iron. I began to like the way this glaze shows every detail of the clay surface, every single mark left in the making process, and the way it pools in the crevices into darker shades of grey-green.

Pots can slowly grow on you...or maybe as with people, it becomes easier to accept their imperfections once we have lived with them for a while..


  1. Mark I've had the same problem. Sometimes I'll approach the surface from a radically different way like mixing some aluminum oxide with a clear or matte glaze, making it very thick, and then randomly brushing it on with a piece of bundled newspaper. Thick in places, thin in others, and then a whiff of cobalt or greenish glaze to finish. I do have to say your ochre-ash glaze is beaut though! (so is the shape)

    1. Thanks, Sam. This glaze is a bit like shino..rather temperamental. But with glazes it seems that the more unpredictable they are, the more rewarding the results can be.

  2. Love it's rich texture and honey colors and I love your last phrase :)