Here are some photos of glazes under microscope. It’s like exploring space.
Living crystal structures captured in time. Microworlds hidden from our eyes. Poetry of nature.
Ceramics… Sometimes you don’t get to see its true beauty right away, by the naked eye. Sometimes, at first sight, it even appears to be ugly or primitive. Have to feel it first with your heart. And when you embrace it, you will discover whole space of endless beauty hidden inside of it…
This glaze is made of clay that our friend brought from the volcanic island of Madeira. The surface is brownish with spotts and when applied in thin layer it comes out darker, it’s matt and it doesn’t flow at firing temperature of 1250 ºC.
On this bowl (top to bottom): iron glaze, chalk glaze and Madeira slip
Slip made of Madeira clay
Madeira slip, the back mug is darker because the slip is applied in thin layer
On tester, it looks great when applied on horizontal surface
Mugs sticked to the plate
Sticked for sure!
We had quite some unhappy results with the dirt that we picked up in the valley of Završnica. The dirt contains probably a lot of calcium carbonate sands, which makes it very liquid when firing on high temperatures. David applied too much of this limestone sand pieces, because he wanted the glaze to flow. Teapot and mugs sticked to the plate and we couldn’t save them. Teapot and two mugs will be ok for our home use.
Last week we went to Strunjan where salt is still produced in traditional salt pans. Strunjan’s salt pans are actually a part of Sečovlje Salina Nature Park. There we picked up some dirt that we found around salt-fields, so we would use it as glaze. Last year we picked up some dirt in Sečovlje salt pans and use it as glaze which came out great. So we tought the glaze from Strunjan’s dirt will be the same, but actually the Strunjan Salina glaze is completely different. It’s brownish and it gets glossy when applied in thick layer. We like it! And we will use it in the future, maybe we combine it with other glazes as well.
Strunjan salt pans
David and Vita picking up dirt around salt pans
And the results:
Strunjan Salina glaze on tester
Inside of a bowl
Strunjan Salina glaze on black stoneware, David applied the dirt in a very thick layer (with his hands, no brush!)
With this glaze it’s all about shrinkage trick. Glaze is mostly made out of porcelain and ball clay, so it needs longer soaking time. It’s fired between cone 8 and 9, depends of procentage of the ingredients. During the firing process its shrinkage is bigger than the shrinkage of clay itself. It makes beautiful surface of melted cracks and little craters. Its downside is that it can deform thin objects.
Neverless this glaze is perfect for combining with other colour glossy glazes. It just makes amazing unpredictable effects.