Sunday, August 25, 2013

In Progress

I've been making some more of my large platters or bird baths.  I've been trying to make these a little thicker so they come through the firings in one piece.  I've been making the bodies too thin and the rims too thick which seems to lead to stress cracking.  This old/new method seems to have solved the problem.

I have several ideas for decorating them.  With these larger pieces I think of them more as a canvas than a bowl.  The tradition of round paintings is an old one.  The Della Robbias did many of them so I feel I am echoing an old tradition.

I've been making bigger, more one of a kind pieces for the show I have coming up at the end of September.  I have a teapot and a bird to finish and the finishing touches on a few glazed pieces.  One of the great benefits of working at ^04 is that I fire glaze and bisque in the same kiln.

There are many other things happening out and around the house.  I'll try to post more in the coming week.

Meanwhile take a look at Mud Colony and see what is happening around the world in clay.

Enjoy what is left of the weekend and as always, thanks for stopping by.........*s*


  1. I will look forward to seeing how these turn out, I love birdbaths! Made a few in the past but never liked how the ^04 is still porous, which it the temp. I fire to, also.
    What do you do about that? Also would like to find a good source for a base stand, metal. I saw somewhere a way to use a metal pipe somehow screwed into the base attachment.... wish I could find that. Cathy

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  3. Hi Cathy...Thanks for the drop in. I have lots of thoughts about the points you raise; I'll leave an answer on your blog.

  4. that sure is a big piece, I am amazed you can get it I to your kiln in one piece. Xox

    1. Hi Corrine....It will be about seventeen inches across when done. I fire large piece in the upper part of the kiln so there is less risk of dropping them, which, yes, I have done.

  5. Replies
    1. Hi Gary....Exciting and a little scary; I haven't done a show in years!

  6. Dearest Suzi,
    Okay, just read this post in time for enjoying 25 more minutes my weekend...
    Love your bird bath in the making and for sure once you get past this stage without cracks, you will manage to paint it nicely.
    Enjoy your new week. We walked this afternoon and there was no rain for a change!

  7. Hi Mariette....Thanks; I never count on work until it's through the final firing!
    It's terrific that you got to be outside without getting rained on! It looks like we may have rain today!
    Toes crossed that you get a longer respite from rain.

  8. So exiting to see the decorating later on.


    1. Hi Elena....The decorating is my favorite part.

  9. Hi Suzi, nice, I love handmade birdbaths!!
    Do you throw them or slab build? I ask because I've found that the pieces pressed tend not to crack as much....with over 16 inches.
    Looking forward to seeing them complete. Will you post your show pieces?
    Good luck with the show!
    Warm regards! Mary

  10. Hi Mary...I handbuild all of my larger pieces. (I can't throw much more than three pounds since I did in my wrist.) I roll my slabs out on my slab roller. I'm pretty sure that they were cracking because I got carried away with how thin I could make them. I was also trying a rim that put too much stress on the pot. Previously I was using a terra cotta body that had frit 3124 in it which made it amazingly strong.
    I make them over slump molds made from...get this...plastic bird baths, which I altered a bit to get the curve I want.
    I'm trying to take photos as I work; too often I forget!
    Thanks for stopping by.......*s*


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