• Kevin_Stafford_kbcs_54_11

It was a busy week right from the start.

There was an opportunity while the vases were drying to get back to the mask cups and bowls. You might remember that I had left them in an unfinished state weeks back. They have the ‘pin holes’ that need filling. The coloured epoxy putties I ordered arrived over the holidays.

Filling the holes is actually the last step. First the rims have to be dealt with. Then the lustres applied and fired on.

I lapped the rims of one set of nine bowls and a couple extras with silicon carbide. I was after an unbroken ring around the entire circumference. It was faster to lap one in each hand at the same time. It was fun not bumping them together as my hands moved around and around. It took patience to get what I was after. I softened the lapped edge inside and out with a diamond pad after.

I also lapped some ‘cups’ that I started two years ago. I recently glazed them with the mask bowls. I will talk more about them once they have been photographed.

The cups and bowls were wiped down with rubbing alcohol to remove any water spots. Yellow and white gold lustres were applied and fired to 017.

When I started to load the vases in the bisque, I didn’t think I was going to get them all in. It was a nice surprise when I did. It pays to have clean verticals and shapes that stack and interlock. I could make a few more next time.

The vases came out of the bisque on Saturday morning. It took a day to plan and mix the glazes and another two to brush them on. There are groups of two or three vases for each of the thirteen coloured glazes I mixed. All have Black Hole as the top coat on the exterior and the same black without the polymers over the interior.

What took one kiln to bisque took both to glaze fire. The rules are different. No touching. Both kilns are in their cool down cycle as I post this.

I agreed on short notice to do a window show starting January 12 at Stoneware Gallery. It’s the other reason besides generating glaze tests that I chose to make these vases. Whatever the results, they’ll be out tomorrow evening. Just enough time to shoot the images before they need to take their place on Thursday. Fingers crossed.

My backup plan is to use the mask bowls. Have to get on filling the holes today in case it goes that way. No time to rest.

Next week there will be images and discussion of the finished work.