Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Pot, Pot, Pot!!!

"Pot, pot, pot" - my smallest fan just informed me when he came to check out what Nona was doing. The porcelain made from the raw kaolin and a little addition of potash feldspar is beautiful to throw but we shall see what happens in the drying and firing. I decided not to add silica as there is a lot in the raw kaolin and I ground a little extra retrieved from the sieving process just to see what it would do to the final body. There are still a lot of little iron speckles in the body and I really don't know if I want to eliminate these. Now I have to go and make more and this time I will let it age a little longer than a week.

I am surprised I could get anything done out there as we had a big downpour with lots of thunder so there were four dogs milling about me, tails flailing trying to vie for my attention. One form suffered an injury but it was still soft enough to fix.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

That local clay!

I should be throwing saleable items but instead I'm sieving clay - pretty basic sieving process! I did make things easier making a slurry and sieving through a small 60 mesh sieve so that might be a better throwing body - time will tell.
The dogs love the lemon grass - have to grow it outside the fence as they won't leave it alone if its within their boundary but where there's a will there's a way. That brown tail belongs to one of their next door friends - yes we now have a gate in the new fence between us so the two brown dogs can visit the two black dogs with ease and they, too, like the lemon grass, and they all love clay.....
I just had to show what these two little hands made. The small jug was to be a goblet but little fingers created the perfect pourer and the bowl was made with Nona's help - he loves to 'poh' as he says and today the red clay was the attraction. I can see lots more 'pohing' coming up.

Environmental influences surface so much in my work so I couldn't resist adding some images. I marvel at these beautiful jellyfish left high and dry with the tides with their dotted patterning and delicate edges and of course the sunsets are always full of the most incredible colours.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Summer Rain

The Cooktown Orchids are out again. Pennefather Beach north of Weipa will be a blaze of colour - the orchids are on the low shrubs beside the beach growing unnoticed until they flower.

Firing today - looked like a hot rainfree day but we are getting the odd shower just to make my life difficult with a leak down the chimney right above the damper. Not fun sitting there redirecting the flow but at least its only for a few minutes while the downpour lasts. Fingers crossed it doesn't get any worse later this afternoon - don't fancy the flames and water mix!
............well that didn't quite go according to plan - kiln is choking and I can't blame the burners so phone call to my helpful kiln man thousands of miles away and he, like me thinks maybe the flue has collapsed inside. 800C after 9 hours is not normal so its pointless wasting more gas until I can peer down that flue. He assures me its quite simple taking the back off so I am quite the fixit kiln-woman these days. Hopefully I can get it up and running and meet the Wednesday deadline for a local parting gift to make the removalists.