Monday 22 March 2010: Chemistry Lab....
I thought I'd do a blip about the part of a potter's life that most of us find a little daunting and usually frustrating.....but I have to say that I'm really quite enjoying the time I'm spending in the glaze department of the studio....it's been nicely built by Terry, things are organized to some small degree, and everything is within reach! My old studio didn't have this kind of facility, and actually because the kind of work I did then didn't require much in the way of glaze exploration, I was very happy to be using the few glazes I had designed.....but now, the field is wide open and the possibilities are endless.....(that's the daunting part...where to stop!).
It's actually very rewarding to be finally understanding more about the different materials involved in glazes, and there are many and with wonderful names like: spodumene, strontium, wollastonite....not to mention copper, cobalt and chrome oxides....rutile and bentonite....all pretty interesting chemicals!!! I'm enjoying the precision work of weighing out exact grams of each material, changing things around as much as I am able, and then putting them into the kiln and presto...magic happens!
So, this has been my day.....reformulating some glazes that were a bit too runny the first time round, and some that were a bit too stiff....thank god for my good friend at one of the pottery supply places I've been associated with for years....he has a very nifty program that helps figure out what needs changing!
In a couple of days there will be new and interesting results from the kiln!