Thursday, 29 January 2009
These pots have just come from the kiln . I am impressed with the increased translucency in these pieces. I am forever experimenting, looking for ways of improving what I do, and this time I altered the firing schedule quite extensively. Thank goodness these things sometimes pay off!
Sunday, 18 January 2009
Because the metallic salts that I use for the decoration of my work are soluble they add a quality that could not be achieved with traditional oxide decoration. They are absorbed into the body and interact with each other reminiscent of watercolour painting. As you can see from the detail shown, the term watercolors on porcelain used to describe this technique is very apt.
Sunday, 11 January 2009
Ever since my first experimentation with porcelain bodies, my quest has been the pursuit of whiteness and translucency. Unfortunately in South Africa, where I work, the local kaolins are not very pure. The idea of importing a kaolin did not appeal to me as I have always been determined to make my bodies using local materials. After achieving limited success with porcelain tests, cream rather than white and little, if any, translucency, I experimented with a few bone china recipes.
From the first tests the results were incredible. Whiteness that I had only imagined. It transpires that the bone ash, which makes up a large part of the body, has a bleaching effect on any iron traces in the kaolin, producing a body of extreme whiteness and increased translucency. Recently I have started adding bentonite to the body to increase green-strength. Bentonite, which itself contains small quantities of iron usually making porcelain tests creamier, rendered the bone china, if anything, whiter than it was before the addition.
Sunday, 4 January 2009
Thursday, 1 January 2009
Well as 2009 begins , it is time once again for the inevitable resolutions. This year I want to consider the word focus. It is my intention to focus on making work, exploring new avenues within that work. I intend to focus on getting my work exposed to as many people as possible. It is also my intention to focus on the joy that doing the work brings. I take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy and fulfilled 2009. May all our intentions be realised.
Posted by John Shirley at 19:51