I haven't yet had a chance to pull my goodies out of the kiln, but I couldn't not give you some wonderful eye candy. Today's post comes to you from Heather. She was kind enough to send through some pics, along with her comments of the process. For those of you who don't know - Heather is our wonderful Art Clay instructor! - She also has tons of new classes coming up that you may have seen posted here on our blog :-)
A couple of photos. Bronze bunch I included the obvious key that I rushed and it wasn't dry and you can see the crack in it.....good to note. Also on the stamped pieces with flowers you can see some pit marks from the carbon...I have read that this can happened.
I included my disastrous bird house. I rushed this and it wasn't dry and it has cracks bubbles and the side wall is flaking I picked at it to show it. I have been able to attach walls and roofs in the past but this time the roof did not stick (I did hurry it as I wanted to get an idea of how it would fire and so on.
The firing schedule I did for this batch was ramp 300F to 1550 and then hold for 3 hours. (I kind of made it up to see if it would work...if the pieces had been dry I think I would have had 100% success.
The copper picks the back row has copper some brushed and some straight out of the kiln. The front row is some experiments with the heat patina on fired copper clay...you can get really cool effects although it seems to make them brittle although I need to look into this further. I re-fired a piece that this had happened too and it became bendable again.... I need to experiment more to make sure I am right about this theory.
What is really interesting to note, is that if you are at all familiar with working silver clay, there is a learning curve to working the bronze and copper clays. They are not the same animal at all. It's fascinating, fun, and the possibilities are endless. But keep in mind, you will need at least a few packs of clay that you should plan to be experimental - in other words, don't get your hopes up that your first pieces will be amazing works of art :-)