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100_4090 100_3692 1.5kg porcelain commisioned porcelain teapot body

The process.

The pot is thrown on the wheel.

Sometimes a guage is set so that all the pots can be thrown to a set size.

100_3525

I fire in a gas kiln using a process called reduction firing.

The atmosphere in the kiln is starved of oxygen by adjusting the flue and the pressure of the gas entering.

100_3471 100_3685 foot thrown on base 100_3817 100_6912 100_6911

The minerals and oxides in the clay and the glaze become altered forming the speckles in the glaze and radically altering the colours of the clay and glaze.

 

Then it is set aside to dry until it is leatherhard.

Then returned to the wheel for turning.

 

 

The wheel is used like a lathe and tools are used to form feet onto bowls and finer features on the pot.

Handles can be applied at this stage.

 

The pot then has to dry completely before it goes into the kiln for bisque firing.

In the bisque firing the pots are slowly heated up to 1000 degrees centigrade, this takes 7- 10 hours.

At this temperature the clay is partly vitrified, but is still porous.

When cool they are ready for glazing.

 

The glaze is a mixture of ground rocks and minerals, with oxides added to give colour.This mixture is suspended in water.

When the pots are dipped in this mixture the pots suck up the glaze and it is left on the surface as a fine powder.

 

 

The pots are then returned to the kiln for the glaze firing.

This firing, which is very much a hands on process, takes about 10 hours and the temperature of the kiln is taken up to 1300 degrees centigrade. After firing to this temperature the clay and the glaze are completely fused together and the clay becomes non porous.

This oxygen reduced atmosphere causes the glaze to seek out what oxygen it can get from other sources like the clay and the glaze.

 

When the firing is finished the kiln is closed completely so the cooling can take place very slowly.

After 12 - 15 hours, when the kiln has cooled to about 100 degrees centigrade the kiln can be opened.