Friday, July 6, 2012

The problems with glazing highly detailed ceramics

Really this should be entitled: "The issues/challenges with glazing highly detailed Pedro Ramirez ceramics" because the issues I have are not really problems... then again I digress because maybe they are.  The problem with my highly detailed sculptures consisting of birds, flowers, occational animals and plants, are that low fire (and even cone 10 in fact) glazes can gob over and totally round out all of my sharp edges and just make the entire composition of delicate details look like lumpy volcanic lava.  I have overcome this issue by using very thin glazes, and sometimes no glaze at all.  Ceramics can be covered in wax or polish, or other sealants, but lately I have just been using very thin glazes, achieving any colors needed/wanted by using washes, stains, and thin underglazes.  The two pots glazed in clear will actually have matte areas which appear unglazed but areas of shine will appear here and there.  In the next firing cycle I want to actually dip a white pot in clear glaze and see how the details (since it is clear glaze afterall) are affected, I might like what I see.  So, want to do super detailed ceramic work and not lose that detail? Use thin glazes and by all means experiment.

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