Sunday, April 29, 2012

In the meantime...

In the meantime, since my last post, our son Ben married his sweetheart Callie.  It was a delightful, unique wedding just like they are.  The invitations gave the first clue that this was not a traditional wedding.
Open the envelope and you have a cloth pocket

pull the invitation out of the cloth pocket and you see the announcement of a "picnic wedding"

and finally you have a traditional form of wedding invitation.

They chose to be married at a family property on the Guadalupe River.  To get to the wedding site guests walked through the fields down to the water's edge (Pardon my cell phone photo!)

where chairs had been set up for the guests (about 150 guests!) and children.

The wedding was at dusk so the lighting is not great.  But you can see what a great site it was for their wedding.  We adore Callie and could not be happier for Ben--who is himself very happy!  What a great event.

The beginning of a happy story!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

my wonderful new kitchen

I've been holding off posting pictures of the kitchen--the special part of the new kitchen--till my pottery friends could see it live. They were here last night so here we go.

Besides the new cabinets and applicances--which we've known we must replace since we bought this house 4 years ago--the most exciting part is the 'backsplash' behind the range. My teacher, Diana Kersey, does wonderful architectural ceramic work. She has had contracts with the city to install her work on bridges here in San Antonio (see some of her work here.)
Welcome to my kitchen:

It is so hard to show the 3D effect.

And there is a bit of it over the sink.

In the photos the cabinets and counter tops look white but they are a pale yellow and the walls an old gold--perfect backdrop for the wonderful sunflowers Diana built.

My kitchen is now the happiest place to be in our home!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

the function of bookcases

We had the ceiling and one wall in the library painted. The painter came on Monday, said he could do the work that day. He had to patch and paint the ceiling and one wall. He finished on Tuesday at 4 pm. We are expecting friends over at 6:30! To get to the wall we needed to empty 2 bookcases so we could move them away from the wall.

We quickly stacked the books on the dining table.
On the buffet.
AND on the sofa.
Can you believe that those books all fit on the 2 bookcases? And if so, where did all those other books come from? And Jim wants to paint behind the white bookcases--where do we empty those shelves to?

Tomorrow pictures of the new kitchen!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

the new kitchen

It is all finished now except for the back splash--which will be very special--so there will be one more round of kitchen pictures!

After the counters were installed the kitchen had such an ethereal look--I loved it! But then I moved all my 'stuff' in and added handles to the cabinets and lost the ethereal look.

The shuttered area is a pass-through to the dining room. Door on the far right is a walk in pantry.

The colors don't show up very well. The cabinets are a very pale yellow--almost a parchment color. The walls are an old gold. The counters are almost exactly the same color as the cabinets--hard to believe they are so close. Counters are made of an acrylic material a little over an inch thick. It feels great to run your hand over the counters.

As you can see from comparing the before pictures to these we have not changed the layout of the kitchen. We did gut the whole kitchen--except the floors--so considered ways to make major changes. But in the end, we could not find a way to make major improvements. The refrigerator is too far from the sink and I really wanted to correct that but there just was not a satisfactory alternative. Taking out the wall oven opened up the look and feel of the kitchen a lot. The range has a double oven: small one on top and larger (turkey) oven below. I've only used the top oven so far and am really happy with it. I love having a gas range top.

The next pictures will be the back splash! Till then, off to the studio.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

the old kitchen

From the day we first toured the house we knew we wanted/needed to re-do it! I think the house was built in the '60s and I don't think anything had been done to it since that time. There was a live-in maid who may have done all the cooking--the homeowner/housewife was a professional (doctor or lawyer, can't remember) and a single parent for a time so she needed the help. But maybe if you are NOT the one in there everyday preparing the meals you don't much care about the kitchen. So here are some snapshots of it:

On the wall separating the kitchen and the dining room

Nice window over the sink.

Our refrigerator did not fit in the space allotted for it so we had to rip out the "kitchen office" area and put the refrigerator there. Another nice window on the end wall.
What you don't see except for a tiny piece of it is the wallpaper that was on the fur down over the range and over the sink areas. So happy to have that out!

Everything worked so that made it harder to make the commitment to tear it all out. But we did!

You have to wait to see the 'after' pictures until it is really finished! Currently the cabinets are installed and the walls painted. The range (gas, yeah) is in and fires! The refrigerator is in but not connected to the (new) water line. No counters yet--they come next Wednesday. Getting close--but close does not win in sports or war or kitchens! Stay tuned!

I've been working in the studio this morning but came in to greet the A/C repair man! Our A/C was not cooling yesterday afternoon--but by morning it was holding its own. None-the-less, we called for help--expecting 108° on Saturday. I don't think we've ever had temperatures that high as long as I've lived here (all my life.) I'll get a bite to eat then go back out and see how much I can get done before the studio gets too hot for me.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I've had so many wonderful ceramic adventures this year: NCECA in March; Ron Philbeck's workshop featuring Doug Fintch and Hannah McAndrew in April; walking Austin's "Art of the Pot" in May; a great time with Tony Clennell when he returned to Texas in June; and this month I got to meet and attend John Britt's glaze chemistry workshop--a long wished for opportunity. So many stimulating experiences, I should be cranking out the work. But I'm not. It is HOT here and even with a small A/C unit in the garagio it is still way too hot around here--57 days OVER 100° already--and 110° predicted for Saturday. And, as announced earlier, we have a new grand baby! Sweet, beautiful baby girl, Caroline. Then to top it all off we are having the kitchen remodeled! What a time-sink and head-ache that is! Today is the 15th day without a kitchen--and we won't get the counters and sink in until a week from tomorrow.

Somewhere along the way I lost my steam. Tony had me fired up about making several compotes with different aspects to mix and match. I was excited about that--but the fire dwindled. I have glazed two and have one in need of glaze--but there is nothing exciting enough to photograph.

In spite of the heat, the workshop with John Britt last weekend was great. I came away with a long 'to-do' list for exploring a favorite glaze. I will do those…but will probably wait for a break in the weather. It is so bad here that we were wishing Irene would head our way--foolish, I know. I guess some of the North & South Carolina folk are wishing we had gotten our wish.

On a brighter note: the kitchen is looking great! I was overwhelmed by all the decisions I had to make--the hardest was paint color for the walls! I anxied over that for a week or two. I brought 5 different sample cans of wall paint home(each an independent trip to the paint store!) and had splotches all over the kitchen. I kept running out to beg to bring home the cabinet sample to hold up next to the newest test paint again! But now that the walls are painted and the cabinets are in I am convinced that I made the very best choice. Jim and I both are very pleased with the result. I am remembering watching (via her blog) Sandy Miller re-do her kitchen herself! It was amazing even then--more so now that I know more about what all is involved that we are having done for us!

Pray for rain.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

the good grandmother

NOT a studio day today--planning that for tomorrow!

This afternoon/evening our grandchildren, Reed and Jack, came for a visit while their mom and dad had dinner out. So here is a picture of the good grandmother:

That's me behind the camera with a glass of wine in her other hand! Seriously, Jim is a grand grandfather! He is wonderful with the boys--they bring out the best in him! Fun watching 'all the boys" at play!

These little guys are expecting a baby sister in August--though their mom is not sure she will make it till then! We are excited about the coming of this little girl. She will be the 5th grandchild and second girl since the very first grandchild, Lauren, 17 years ago. I always expected and wanted a daughter--I had 5 sons! Me who grew up in a house full of females! So Lauren was a very special delivery as will be this little girl. Not to disparage our three dear grandsons--what fun they are, what energy they have and what boundless enthusiasm!

Monday, June 27, 2011

not a studio day

Jim and I spent today trying to define our wishes for the kitchen renovation. Lots of details to address--and agree on. Jim is really a champ. He has said that he wants me to have what I want in the new kitchen. He has said it over and over again--so I know he really means it. Yet he can't help bringing up points I have overlooked or not thought through very well or for which he has a better (different) idea. Of course, my first reaction is defensive. But usually he has observed something that I do need to consider or reconsider! I have gotten a bid for the cabinets from a 'big box' and we have contacted a custom cabinet maker to get a bid from also. So we have a pretty firm plan for the overall project.

Today we had Diana Kersey, my ceramics teacher, over to discuss having her do a ceramic 'back splash' on the wall behind the range--and maybe behind the sink too, if funds stretch that far. Diana does architectural ceramic work and has created some some wonderful work. Most recently she put up her first public work on a bridge here in San Antonio. We are really excited about having her create something great for our new kitchen. We did do our homework and had a proposal for the image theme for the work that I am very enthusiastic about.

I did go out to the studio for a little while today. I trimmed the 3rd bowl and played around with the 3 bowls on the the 4 pedestal bases. I'm trying to keep them moist so I can add more sprigs, attach bowls to bases and cover with slip. I shot a few photos but they were not great and will do better tomorrow or the next day. Diana asked to see the studio and I showed her my "Tony assignment" work. She had a good suggestion: she said I should measure the width of the bowls and compare to the width of the top of the bases and do the same for the height of the bowl compared to the height of the bowl. I was surprised when I was playing around with the various combinations that the shortest base looked really good with the bowls--which I never expected! I thought it was much too short to work with any of the bases. That was what prompted Diana's suggestion that I make those measurement comparisons. So a little addendum to Tony's assignments.
The photo does not do justice to the differences. Better later!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

another day

Another bowl.

And four bases.

And another 16 test tiles. I was hoping someone might have a suggestion for an easier way to produce 200 test tiles! Sixteen a day will take 11 days to make 200. And I'm sure I won't be able to be in the studio for 11 consecutive days. In fact, I've decided I need to dedicate 2 or 3 days a week to 'studio days' and try to honor that and let the other 4 or 5 days be 'family' days. It does not work to go out for a short time. When I get back things have 'over dried' and have to be recycled. So planning on a couple studio days with no work 'left over' for later is how I need to think about it. The other days I need to focus on family and household activities.

I was touched by Jen Mecca's post today. She is a strong lady to be able to meet her children's special needs, enjoy family life and still make time to pursue her art. Lovely lady, lovely art!

Saturday, June 25, 2011


"Sometimes our flame goes out, but is blown again into instant flame by an encounter with another human being." - Albert Schweitzer

Wednesday and Thursday were devoted to helping Kenny get a new TV and getting it installed and running. Nothing of that was simple or easy! Seemed like we do one part and get it running only to have another problem pop up. Finally after a second visit from our "Time Warner" repair guy today all is well and Kenny has a big smile on his face!

Friday I had a doctor's appointment and then went downtown to get clay (low fire, red) and look for a die to make test tiles from my extruder. No die.

And each afternoon through yesterday, Lauren (my granddaughter) came over for help making her little-bitty bikini!

Yesterday I tried to figure out how I would make 200 test tiles....And I threw 2 compote bowls (4 pounds each). I let the rims get too dry while having supper so I covered with a wet cloth and plastic.

Today they were ready to put sprigs on. I put sprigs on the inside and outside. On one bowl I put sprigs in 5 spots on the rim, on the other I put them in 3 spots. This afternoon I trimmed the bottoms.

I pushed the sprig spots in a bit on the 3-sprig piece--but because it was already so dry I did not push it too far!

I also made 16 test tiles. It might faster and easier to throw them but I am extruding a 2 3/4" wide strip of clay, cutting into 5 1/2" lengths. Cutting out a wedge of the clay at the 3" mark, rolling a MKM design across the upper portion of the piece, then folding at that cut part to make an 'L'. I am marking each piece with "LR" (for Longhorn Red clay) and GJ. (I'm marking the tiles because I will also make some in ^6.)

Tomorrow I plan to throw the bases for these 2 compotes; make another set of tiles; and, maybe make a couple more compote bowls.

I have not mixed up the glaze tests yet, nor the slip.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


On my way out to the studio, but first I want to respond to Ron's comment (uh oh, that is how it all goes bad, "before I go out to the studio I will…" But I WILL go out as soon as I finish this short post! : )

Tony is studying low fire these days. They may move into an urban setting for their retirement years and that precludes wood firing! And he says he is becoming attracted to the glazes and color opportunities of low fire. So we did a lot of looking at earthenware pieces in the Asian collection. I've been doing a bit of earthenware work lately (focused on baking pieces for my own kitchen) but thinking I'd get back into ^6 soon. After the visits with Tony I'm thinking of doing a bit more investigation of the low-fire work.

Of my work that is around the house Tony was most attracted to and complimentary of this piece:

So he outlined some explorations for me to pursue based on it. This was done in ^6 but he is suggesting I work in ^04 for now. First assignment was to make the same bowl--same size--but change the height of the pedestal base: taller, shorter. Make 5 of these variations.

Then he suggested playing around with the placement of the sprigs:
The split rim should be opened up more. Then try sprigs on the outside also; then only on the outside; then push the rim in toward the center at the sprig points to form a scalloped or flower shape.

The same changes with the sprigs on the base. But also try putting the sprigs high up on the pedestal, not at the base.

He also gave me some glazes to test and he proposed that I cover the test bowls with white slip and then 'load' the sprigs with colored glaze that runs down the inside of the bowl, same idea with the sprigs placed high on the pedestal.

Well, that is the short version of my assignment list! So I'm off to the studio to get started--I picked up another box of low fire clay yesterday so I'm ready to get to work.

Note: Apologies for the poor quality photos. I'm using my iPhone for these--not wanting to take the time to get out a real camera and set up for better photos. Sorry.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


That's me--Absent With Out Leave. For a long time. Lots of quilt feelings. I'm going to give it another try at becoming again a regular blogger.
For some reason, unknown to me, I've not been potting. So if I'm not potting what is there to blog about? But I want to pot (and blog) but just can't make myself get out to the studio and stay there long enough to accomplish any work. I've tried all the tried and try 'tricks' to get back to work: clean the studio; look through all my wonderful ceramic books; visit our wonderful museum's collection of Asian ceramics. I have also availed myself of wonderfully stimulating events: NCECA in Tampa Bay, Florida with my friend Rachelle, which is very stimulating; then I went to Shelby, NC, to meet Ron Philbeck, Doug Fintch, and Hannah MacAndrews--long time blogging buddies who I loved getting to meet (and see their secrets demonstrated); and this last weekend I attended a workshop with Tony Clennell. These were all wonderful experiences. But they did not lead me back to the studio. But I think I have finally found the key back to the studio.
At the workshop Tony shared an analysis of the work of several of the students. He used those pieces to help us see the strengths and weaknesses of the pieces and how to make them more successful. This was a powerful lesson--and very stimulating. Later, when he talked about my pieces, he also suggested some exercises I might do to improve my work. He gave me quite a list of things to do! I have prepared a list of the work he assigned me and I intend to begin tomorrow working through that list! So I have a direction and a challenge!
While Tony was in town I arranged for us to visit the studio of my teacher, Diana Kersey, and to see a wonderful 'public works' project she had just installed on the bridge on Mulberry. It was a real treat for Tony and me to see her work and hear her description of the process she followed to make the work.
The next post will report my success in getting on to the path Tony laid out for me to lead me back into my ceramic work--or there will be no more posts. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Well, guess the first thing is to say "Hi, there" to anyone who might drop by after my 2 month silence. I'm still wondering why I've been avoiding my blog. It was such a pleasure once. But now it feels like an unpleasant obligation. I've dreamed up lots of possible explanations: I'm dispirited, I have no studio work to discuss, I've become self-conscious about the hubris of having this blog in the first place.
I daily read the blogs of friends I have made through the blog world--so I feel like I am still in touch with them. But…I'm not!
So, whats going on? I went to NCECA--don't deserve it, I know, but I hope that it lights a fire under me! I did really enjoy it. I had not considered going until I got an invitation I could not refuse: my roommate from a former NCECA wrote and invited me to join her for NCECA. I had not seen her since that trip and could not resist the chance to be with her again. So off I went. And it was great. So many pots! Such wonderful exhibits. Pete Pinnell's talk was a treat. La Mesa is always very special--Santa Fe Clay does an incredible job putting that together each year. And I really enjoyed the exhibition at the Craft House--my kind of pottery. It does seem that 'sculptural ceramics' is eclipsing 'functional pottery' these days. Sculptural = art, functional = craft. Well, that is my own personal observation/opinion.
A favorite piece from La Mesa is by Betsy Williams of New Mexico:

Isn't that lovely!
I have spent a bit of time in the studio since my return--but no great news from there yet.
Today I spent the couple hours it took to watch the video that Brandon Phillips posted a link to today: panel discussion of Michael Simon's show there at U of Minnesota. I felt properly chastised for not putting in my studio time!
I think my BIG block is glazing. I could sit and throw bowls all day, all week. Or hand build little Japanese hermit huts. But then when I think of how to decorate/glaze I freeze up. I think this is partially the result of going off in two directions: low-fire earthenware and ^6 stoneware. I had done a lot of glaze testing at ^6 but now it has been almost a year since I've done anything with those glazes. Since then I've been working with earthenware and making minimal tests of glazes and terra sigillata. Feeling very insecure in both areas now.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

baby steps

Thanks for the comments and encouragement! I'm enjoying dipping my toe into the studio these days even if only for little bits of time. The videos help me over the hump of returning to the studio and facing the "what do I do now" questions! Yesterday I talked Kenny into giving me an old belt of his that is nicely woven, making great impressions in the clay--as demonstrated by Sandi on her DVD. I used it to make a band to go around the rim of a box I'm making.
The box (for my recipes) will be a bit of a sampler. Each side is impressed with a different texture design. Have not yet decided if I will paint with colored slips before I bisque it. Or I may just cover with a colored glaze (^04) to see the reaction to the texture.

We are not experiencing the snow and wet freezing conditions that so much of the country is suffering right now but it IS cold here. The low last night was 18 degrees and the high today was in the low 20s--that is COLD for us! It is expected to stay like that for the next 3 or 4 days--we may even get a bit of snow tonight. Significant for me because when I went out to the studio today--after keeping heaters running over night--it was too cold to stay out there. Stimulated by Judy's most recent posts, I brought in my watercolors and rice paper and spent a while practicing my brush work. I am too tight, really want to have those graceful, loose strokes that I so admire--but not there yet.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

bits and pieces

During the holidays I treated myself to two new DVDs: Nan Rothwell's Throwing demonstrations and Sandi Pierantozzi's Slab and Texture work. Both are very inspiring--they each do such wonderful work and so different! It has inspired me to get started back in the studio a bit. Supporting that urge, the weather here has been wonderful--today it got up to the height 70s--so it is not daunting to be out in a cold studio!

This week I started by impressing some slabs with texture--some just to fire and use in the future for texture sources, and some on a small pitcher and others on a recipe box I'm trying to make for my collection. I'm not crazy about slab work--even with a slab roller--it just seems so boring. But adding texture as I go makes it more fun and more interesting.
This little pitcher began as a slab that I impressed texture on, then rounded into a cylinder and pinched the tripod feet. In the past I had thrown baseless cylinders the pinched the tripod feet onto. Not sure which I like to do better but I do like getting to impress texture on the slabs.

Last year I make a jug from a video that Nan Rothwell demonstrated on her web page. The jug (she made a pitcher, I made an amphora) was one of the more popular pieces I made all year! And I've intended to make another ever since. So now I have thrown one and I want to do another before I bisque the first so I can work on them both.

In the category of failed projects--and serious discouragements--is a pierced pot I was working on. I worked on it over an extended period of time so was keeping it covered and moist. One evening I over wetting it so that in the morning, when I first touched it, half the pot fell apart. I want to get another started before I totally loose touch with the impulse. This the end phase of that sad tale.

Monday, January 17, 2011

now, after the holidays

We've had a longer holiday season than most. Ours began with the celebration of Kenny's 50th birthday the week before Thanksgiving. Then there came Thanksgiving and then Christmas and finally my 74th birthday celebrated last Monday with a visit from my sister Catherine and her husband Wayne who live in Maine. Tomorrow Catherine returns home to Kennebunkport and I plan to be in the studio for the first time since these holidays began so long ago!

I have not touched clay in so long it will be like starting all over. And I am really not sure where or how to begin again. I've spent a lot of time before this break working with earthenware clay but I think I am about to return to my BlackJack clay which I fire to ^6. It is sold as a ^6 to ^10 clay--which I know does not exist! I have considered firing it a little higher--it is not vitrified at ^6 and vases do weep if left standing with water for a length of time. But to change the firing temperature will also require adjusting the glazes I've used--or be willing to accept the change the higher temperature will cause in the glazes. Actually, my vases weep that were fired to ^10 at the craft center when I was taking classes there. So maybe I should just give up making vases! I am not satisfied with what I've been able to do painting designs on my pots and that might be best done in the majolica style--which is low fire again. I think I need to satisfy that quest before moving on. So you see I'm not at all clear about what I am going to do nor what I want to do.

The most exciting thing in my ceramics life right now is a new book I bought for myself--as a birthday present.

I heard Robert Piepenburg speak at NCECA several years ago and was very moved by his presentation. I have another book he wrote--a very small book that left me wanting more. When I saw the ad for this new book I was very eager to get it. Because it was written by him but also because I've been wishing for some instruction about 'ceramic design'. I expected this to be something of a 'how-to' book, but it isn't. I'm half way through reading it and have just come to the discussion of the 'elements of design'. The book is very inspirational, just as his talk was years ago. For me, it is a treasure. But it has not been easy reading. He is dealing with intangibles: design, spirit, and love. The essentials of life and art. But not easy to define and I have to re-read parts to be sure I am understanding his words in the way he is using them. It does make me eager to get back into the studio and see how reading the book may affect what I do with the clay.

When Jim and I were in Oaxaca for my niece's wedding last August we saw a rug/tapestry on the wall of a small shop and fell in love with it. After much discussion, consideration, and some haggling we bought the rug. Not until this January did we manage to get it up on the wall. We are delighted.
And so my new year begins!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Christmas came early

Oh, my gosh! Santa (in the form of 2 very dear friends) really did it up BIG this year.
One of my favorite blogging friends had me on her 'generosity' list--and she went overboard in the generosity department:
Isn't it the most wonderful piece? It sits on the window sill in our kitchen so that each time I'm washing dishes I see it, smile, think of Tracey and find myself in a quiet, peaceful place. What a gift! It takes me back to my mother's hometown in East Texas--the place I love most in the world. Don't know that I ever saw a house like this there but it comes from there. Thanks, Tracey.

Today I got an email from another friend telling me that he had made the ceramic easel I was describing (and wishing for) at his house last Saturday. I wanted something that would hold a pot--greenware or bisqued--at an angle so I could paint a design on it comfortably--without having to stand on my head to get to it or destroy it by mishandling. A few years ago I had seen a photo, with measurements, of a ceramic easel made by Scott Creek once long ago but no longer available. I had printed out the information because I thought I might want one someday. So my dear friend Herb looked at the photos and made a version of it for me. What a friend! My husband had said he'd make it for me--but that was not going to really happen! So here is the easel holding a cylindrical pot covered with a celadon slip that I plan to paint on.

The height of the pot holder can be adjusted, as can the angle that the pot is held. How cool is that? I really have not been that good of a girl this year! But Santa sure has been nice to me.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

finally, out of the kiln

For taking such a long time to produce anything, I have very little to show. It was a very light load because after waiting so long to get this far I did not want to wait longer to get a full load. I was trying to move into a new direction with the earthenware clay. I got started with it to make some bake ware--some glazed or partially glazed, some with no glaze at all. I've liked using these pots and like the earthenware clay for its ease of throwing and the shorter firing time. But now I want to do some glazed work and some work that I can decorate with some painting. And that is the scary part. I'm not an artist, have never painted anything but want to! So here I am going in too many new directions--testing new glazes, learning to paint what and how I dream of doing it. Too much. So I've been frozen mid-stream.

So here are the first tests. As I told Jim, "Well, its not a disaster, but there are lots of lessons."
On several pieces I had applied slip before the bisque and then painted a design--some with Mason stain mixed with frit and gerstley borate after the bisque, others with colored slip before the bisque. I was also testing clear glazes.

These were slipped, bisqued and then painted with the Mason stain mixture.
On the left the clear glaze had a dulling effect, not so glossy and a bit buff tinted. On the right the glaze is clearer and more glossy. Slip was very coarse after the bisque. My friend said it was the brush I applied the slip with. It did not smooth out under the glaze though the one on the right is a bit smoother. I was using Pete Pennell's slip--I think I need to try to smooth it out somehow before applying it. Both are shallow bowls about 8" across the rim (they are the same size though the photos do not show that).

I was also testing 2 Majolica glazes and working on those. The biggest surprise was this plate:

I would not have been surprised if the RED pointsettia's had come out pink...but GREY?

The yellow chrysthanthemums came out as expected.

I painted the Majolica on the underside and sprayed it on the topside. The undersides are streaked, pinholed and have runs. The sprayed surface did well. (The pointsettia plate is 10" across, the chrysthanthemum plate is 11" across.)

But the biggest surprise was the second (white) Majolica glaze--though it is no reflection on the glaze. There are two of these little plates (8" across) and both reacted the same to the Majolica glaze.
The cause of this freakish reaction to the Majolica glaze was that I had covered these little plates with terra sig before the bisque firing--but did not see that when I was glazing. I guess the terra sig just ate up the Majolica glaze! There is a faint cloud left behind--and it did craze. Wish I had a photo of the expression on my face with I first picked these up out of the kiln! So I have to do another test of the second Majolica glaze.

The test tiles all have the Pete Pinnell slip. Two had been painted before the bisque firing (top). Two were painted after the bisque (bottom). One was painted with colored slips (Rhodes on right) and the others with the Mason stain mixtures. Because I was trying for a very thin coat of clear glaze the rough texture of the slip is very evident.

So lots of lessons--learned and to be learned.

PS Apologies for the photos--all taken with my cell phone because I would not take the time to set up for photos and get out a 'real' camera this morning! Nothing worth a great photo anyway!