Welcome to my blog. I will attempt to make it much more than just a pitiful list of the relentlessly mundane minutiae of my daily existence but if you feel that I have failed try to imagine all the stuff that I haven't posted.

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

New year. New start.

Despite my best intentions the frequency of my posts over the last 6 months has been rather low - not due to any lack of frantic activity at the workshop, but possibly because of my reluctance to take my expensive camera there to record my days amid the dust, damp and disarray. So, I now have a waterproof, shock proof (workshop proof) camera to record my process much better.

Most of my making is now over - managed this year without anything freezing and getting ripped apart by ice - and the next stages are well underway. My shoulder muscles are complaining as I type this, as I'm busy crushing rocks in my steel mortar and pestle down to 3mm grit ready for ball milling. This is a carbon rich limestone - one of the few rocks that I wet mill - drying out on plaster.

The second to last biscuit firing is packed and has spent the day on a very low burner drying out. There are some high carbon bodies inside, my milled sort-of-porcelain, and that difficult secondary kaolin body that needs it taken nice and even and slow to prevent firecracking.

The odd little red/brown shapes are setters to put the side fired pots on in the wood kiln.

And finally, for this post, a selection of clay body tests for the next wood firing. I always put a variety of tests in a firing - new clays and glazes - and this time I have additional tests from 2 research commissions I am undertaking. one of these is the coprolite project, and the other developing darker clay bodies using local British clays.