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Raku with lusters - John Martin

Raku with lusters - John Martin

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Published by Stefan Van Cleemput
The Golden Touch
Enhancing raku with lusters
by John Martin

“Raku Floral Form,” 11”x19”x7”. Thrown and assembled with applied vitreous slip texture, colored slips and lusters applied at various stages. Multiple firings ending with raku post-firing reduction.

T

here’s a renaissance in raku occurring with the advancements and availability of new colors. New technologies have allowed the potter to buy ready-to-use pre-made colors. Stains and gold lusters have become a more consistent and durable
The Golden Touch
Enhancing raku with lusters
by John Martin

“Raku Floral Form,” 11”x19”x7”. Thrown and assembled with applied vitreous slip texture, colored slips and lusters applied at various stages. Multiple firings ending with raku post-firing reduction.

T

here’s a renaissance in raku occurring with the advancements and availability of new colors. New technologies have allowed the potter to buy ready-to-use pre-made colors. Stains and gold lusters have become a more consistent and durable

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Published by: Stefan Van Cleemput on Sep 14, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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04/28/2013

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PotteryMaking Illustrated
  
 January/February 2007
15
 
T
here’s a renaissance in raku occurring withthe advancements and availability o newcolors. New technologies have allowed thepotter to buy ready-to-use pre-made colors.Stains and gold lusters have become a more consis-tent and durable means o inusing a surace withsaturated color. Dierent stains can be mixed togeth-er just like mixing paint. This allows a potter to havean unlimited palette rich in color, while maintainingthe atmospheric quality and crackle o raku.With commercial lusters, the glazed orm recordsthe memory o the re. Gold luster fashes in the rakureduction, extending its range o character while cre-ating beautiul transitions o color that refect light.The real secret to using lusters eectively is know-
The Golden Touch
Enhancing raku with lusters
by John Martin
ing how to develop the glazed and unglazed suracesunderneath.By building up the surace quality with vitreousslips, copper accents and glossy glaze the harmonyo the gold is balanced by the opportunity or spon-taneous variation.The lusters are applied outdoors with an airbrushusing both red and yellow gold. The vessel is thenred in an outdoor electric kiln to cone 019. Atercooling, a thin coat o opal is applied. The thin washo opal creates a rainbow o color, so a light over-spray in areas enhances the fash o the re.The nal ring at cone 021 is sucient red heat tocreate an intersection o carbon transer, good crack-le, copper fash and gold fash.
“Raku Floral Form,” 11”x19”x7”. Thrown and assembled with applied vitreous slip texture, colored slipsand lusters applied at various stages. Multiple frings ending with raku post-fring reduction.
 
16
 
PotteryMaking Illustrated
  
 January/February 2007
1
To get a heavily textured surace, I applyslip to the outside o a reshly thrownorm. The slip should be thick enough tocreate a variey o textures without running.
2
Use a torch to dry the slipuntil it’s no longer shiny andstarts to crackle. The crackle isenhanced by stretching the clayusing a wooden rib on the inside.
3
Ater the clay reachesleather hard, construc-tion is completed. HereI’ve taken a cylinder, cut itin hal, attached it to thesides and added caps.
4
Ater bisque fring to cone 04, pour glaze intothe piece and work quickly to roll it around.Rotate the piece as you pour out the glaze to evenlycoat the rim.
5
To highlight the texture, brush on White Crackleglaze over the vitreous slip. Next, sponge awaythe surace to leave glaze in the low areas and cracks.
6
White glaze is applied with a slip trailer andbamboo brush, then I begin to add colors, otenoverlapping up to fve coats. Slip trailing white overthe pattern adds even more movement.
7
Copper accents are brushed onto the unglazedareas and the vitreous slip. Splatter more whiteglaze over the exterior using a scrubbing brush andfre to cone 06.
 
PotteryMaking Illustrated
  
 January/February 2007
17
 
WARNING:
When spraying lusters, it is very important touse a NIOSH/MSHA approved respirator with anorganic vapor cartridge that blocks or removesvapors. I use an in-line air hood that deliversresh air through a hose.
8
Apply liquid N-Gold luster with an airbrush overthe copper accents, then apply Gold 170 overremaining areas o slip stopping just below the edgeo the glazed surace.
9
Fire the piece to cone 019, then spray thelusters with a thin coat o Opal.Fill a canhalway withdry sawdust then linethe perimeter withnewsprint. Fire thepiece to cone 021 andremove it hot. Lightthe paper and placethe piece into a metaltrash can o burningsawdust and news-print. The preheatedenvironment reducesthermal shock andunnecessary cracking.
 
Pour in more sawdust and addmore newsprint to establish ablazing fre and add to the insulation inthe cooling period.
1011
Detail showing eects o crackled surace, multiplecolored glazes and lusters ater post-fring reduction.
12

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