REMEMBER - SIMPLE SHAPE CAN TAKE A COMPLEX GLAZE
COMPLEX SHAPE LOOKS BEST WITH A SIMPLE GLAZE
WHEN IN DOUBT CHOSE A SIMPLE GLAZE - IT DOES NOT COME OFF!
IT IS NOT PAINT - IT IS GLASS BONDED TO THE CLAY
HOW TO GLAZE
Step one – wash off the dust – let it dry for one day
Step two – paint the base with wax using only a brush with plastic bristles – the wax will ruin a good brush. (PLEASE don’t use the bamboo brushes!!!!)
Be careful with the wax - if you get it on the body of the project glaze will not stick there!
If you don’t want to use wax you can just wash the base later...
Step three – on day two – select the glaze you want to use and stir it well, making sure the glaze has just the right amount of water – it should be like a ‘melted fast-food milk shake.’
Step four – dip the project in glaze quickly – do not soak it. Let each side dry before dipping the other side. You will be able to watch it dry – the water in the glaze will be soaked in by the bisque-ware.
Step five – look at the glaze – it should look like velvet. If it is too thin, add another dip and/or dips letting it dry between coats. If the glaze is thicker than 1/16 of an inch or begins to flake off you will have to wash it off it off and re-glaze the next day. Wash the glaze off in the bucket in the sink. NEVER WASH GLAZE DOWN THE DRAIN!
If you cannot finish in one day put your project on the blue shelf in the glaze room for now; or in your locker.
Small cracks or bubbles are okay – the glaze will melt to glass in the kiln.
Step six – wash the base of the project off with a small sponge so no glaze can drip onto the kiln shelf in firing. Be very aware that some glazes – like Shadow Green are very ‘runny.’
Step seven – put your project on the blue shelf in the kiln room marked ‘Glaze Fire Shelf.’ This is the only place where projects will be glazed from. I will not look elsewhere for them.
If the base is not clean or the glaze is too thick or thin I will put it on the reject shelf. I will not hunt you down to tell you where it is. It is your responsibility to follow your projects through the shop.
Step eight. Wash the counter!!!
Step nine – Wash everything else you may have used - in the bucket - do not wash glaze down the sink drain!
Throw out the paper towels!!!
Don’t leave brushes in the sink - bamboo brushes will literally fall apart if left in water!
Don’t leave anything in the sink!!!
Make sure the wax is covered - or it will dry out and be ruined.
SPECIAL EFFECTS –
SHOWING OFF TEXTURES WITH DARK COLORS IN THE GROVES
To get glaze in groves to show off carving and pattern
Day one - wash. Day two – dip in dark glaze and wipe the surface clean leaving glaze in the groves. Day three dip in clear on another ‘transparent’ glaze.
When using two colors make sure there is an overlap – this will create a third color. Make sure your dips are not half and half this is visually static and boring. Try for a 2/3, 1/3 dip – this always looks good.
VERTICAL DIP vs. HORIZIONTAL DIP
A vertical dip will split the project into two sides whereas a horizontal dip will outline the edge.
SPLATTER AND SPONGE
You can use a bamboo brush to splatter glaze or a sponge to apply glaze unevenly to create ‘visual texture.’
STAIN / UNDER-GLAZE
To paint linear details on a surface you can use stain – the cobalt works very well – to create water color effects. I also have black and green that work well. Paint on the bisque-ware and put clear over the top; for a softer effect paint stain over white glaze.
ASK AN ADVANCED STUDENT FOR ADVICE...
Get to know the different glazes - that’s why we take note
Make sure you can’t see any patches of clay texture - if so the glaze is too thin - re-apply another coat
If the glaze it to thick - it will ‘crawl’ in the kiln and leave lumps of glaze and bare spots with no glaze on the project.
Glaze always runs from sharp edges - remember it turns to liquid glass in the kiln!
Glaze can be painted on, but it will take many layers or you will see brush marks on the finished product. Details can be painted on with some non-runny glazes and underglazes.
If the glaze is too thick it will crawl and leave bare spots on the surface
An example of how to use a drippy gaze in a good and bad way ...
the pot on the right now has sharp edges, we will need to chip the kiln shelf, and the project will need to have it’s edges smoothed on the grinder.