Monday, March 2, 2009
Pendant Barrel Firing
I fired nine saggars of pendants for my second barrel firing today. This time I used two copper roof flashing saggars in addition to the aluminum foil saggars I had success with in my first barrel firing. I assigned a number to each saggar, with a list of chemicals I added. I hope to determine which chemical combinations create which colors when they have cooled off. I put a number on the back of one pendant in each saggar. I realize it would have been easier if I had numbered every pendant, but that would have taken me too long. I wanted to start the barrel burning as soon as possible since we are expecting rain today.
I lit the barrel at 12 noon and it was still burning with coals on the bottom at 2:30 p.m. With this firing there wasn't as much smoke. I hope to be able to unload the barrel and open the saggars around 4:30 p.m. Some of the pendants are terra cotta clay and some are porcelain, both low fire clay. Oh, and some of the pendants are a combination of both clays.
While the barrel was burning, I was putting some underglazes and slips on greenware pieces I made a few weeks ago. Don't know if you tell in the photo, but this porcelain tree sculpture, after the application of oxide tinted slip, is now tan in color. I mixed two different oxides into slip and put it on the tree. Can you guess which oxides I used? I was feeling adventurous and just went for it. Have you done this type of an experiment before? How much oxide did you mix into the slip? What should I expect? Have I ruined it. Oh, I know, you're going to say I just have to wait and see what happens when it's fired.
OK, then come back tomorrow for the results of the pendant barrel firing. As for the oxide colored slip tree sculpture, those results will be posted some time in the future, so we all have to wait on that one. I forgot to post a rose photo last time, here's a rose for today. I just love this rose, the petals look like crepe paper.