Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas! (or Mele Kalikimaka)

This holiday season seemed to kick my behind a little more than usual! It might have been the half dozen different orders I was working on, or the fact that I was working a little handicapped, but regardless, I managed to complete almost everything I started.

One piece I didn't expect to complete was this sushi board; I'd started it months ago, and couldn't decide on a few of the last details about it - specifically - the feet and the grout. But someone wandered into the shop, saw it, and purchased it on the spot. That's good enough motivation for me to make some decisions and finish it.

Every time I tried to work on this, I'd end up getting distracted, so I would finish each session with a coat of oil. I'd venture a guess that this board has fifteen coats on it, the surface is amazing. Better yet, the color you see is it's absolute natural color - there were no dyes or stains used whatsoever.

I'd would love to tell you more about this wood, but I can't. This board was purchased at an auction, as were many others. Most were unmarked, but identifiable. This one? At first I thought it might be Sapele, and later, I decided it could be Bubinga. Truth be told? Those are only guesses, and the one small scrap I had is long gone. Unless the owner will let me slice a small piece from the bottom of this board, I don't think I'll ever know.

Anyone who is familiar with my tiles knows that I love recesses in them, perfect for holding things - in this case, pickled ginger or wasabi. This tile was slumped in a mold, textured, thrown on the wheel, and managed to fire perfectly round and flat.

Working with clay is nothing like working with wood. With wood, you pretty much know what you're going to get at the end. With clay, you can envision your results, but unless you can control every single factor along the way (which I can't!), you don't know what you're going to get until the very moment you open the door to the kiln. Most potters equate a kiln opening to Christmas, and I completely understand that!

This stoneware tile was fired to ^6 in an electric kiln, and was glazed with multiple layers of Waterfall Brown and Waterfall Green glaze.

It is a magical glaze on textured work.

Speaking of magic, have yourself a wonderful Christmas!

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