Full of confidence I have been spending all the relaxing evenings and the odd day/afternoon off making some great mugs, teapots and such. However they are all lost due to two monumental mistakes.
1st kiln load didn’t workout because of a mistake I made in my glaze recipie. The drama of motherhood. I was weighing out the glaze ingridiants that need to be very precies on the gram. When my son woke up from his nap and started crying. The mother in me responded by promptly forgetting everything I was doing and run to my child. Coming backt to the recipie I had no idea where I had left off. ooops. I assumed I had added the Chalk powder (this is used to allow the other ingridiants to melt and flow at a bit lower tempurature makeing it possible to melt glas at 1200degrees). Without this ingridiant the whole load of pottery that I had glazed had a matt feel to them that isn’t very nice for table ware.
This planter however did benifit from the glaze mishap.
2nd kiln load was glazed with properly mesured glaze however for some reason the kiln was not able to reach the desired tempuratuer of 1200 degrees making it so that the glossy looking glaze once again turned into a sticky mat glaze with no flow.
They dodn’t look bad. However I cannot garentie that they are dishwasher safe because the glaze is not properly melted it might have mini cracks in it that can get filled with coffee for instance and continure to contaminate other liquids that are used in it.
This past year has been such a new journey. Experiencing pregnacy and the birth of our son has been life changing. It has also taken up all those small moments in my days and weeks that i spent on my hobby… pottery. This has made it so pottery is on the back burner. I will still continue to create but maybe with a little less spead as before.
here are my first teapots ive made since being back on the wheel… practice makes ‘perfect’ they say…
Inspirtatiecafe OSO is now serving coffee and tea using Heather Ceramics!!!!
This is your chance to use my pottery in your daily life!
Try out my handmade cups and teapots in Groningen at Inspiratiecafe OSO!
BTW… If you are so inspired by your experiance and want to buy my work please check out coehorn-keramiek who carry mugs, tea pots, hangingpots, vases and more of my work.
NOTE: also to be available soon at inspiratiecafe OSO!
On the 17th of March at the ‘Tuinland’ garden center in Groningen I will be doing pottery throwing demonstrations on the potters wheel. There will also be a chance to buy some of the items that you’ve seen on my instagram this past season. Feel free and welcome to come by!
Glazing is a new adventure I have recently been on. This last week I took the time to tediously mesure out and mix glaze trials for three differant recipies that I wanted to try out. Haveing only done 6 trials per recipie I ended up createing 12 seperate glazes. Trials are an important proces because it gives you a chance to check the glaze. Important atributes are that it doesn’t drip to much or how bright the colors might show up.
In the example below you see two of the glaze recipies each one has five differant additionas to the original recipie. (from the top) For example the first trial from the left I added Manganese oxide, the second from the left I added coper oxide, next one I put cobalt oxide, next iron oxide, and the fith from the left has nikkel oxide. The last of them is the original recepie.
I love it when I set out to make 40 coffee mugs, that they all share the same clay and shape but each has a slight difference in size or angle etc. This is what makes hand made wheel thrown pottery so special. Especially in this world of monotonous consistncy and easily reproduced ‘art’. I want each of my pieces to speak of the love, care and craftmanship that my hands have to offer.
As a home potter I wanted to make sure I was staying safe. After speaking to a highschool chemistry teacher about all the oxcides and carbonates that I use in my glaze recipies I very quickly realized how serious this stuff is. When I worked with glaze recipies at the studio I took potting courses no one really laid out why some of these minerals are dangerous and what they could do to your body. Note that often only 0.5% of a glaze contains a dangerous substance. The other minerals used are things like chalk and ash. I did however realize I needed to take some serious precautions when working with these powders.
So I fully prepared now with my filtered face mask, safty goggles (for when i spray the glazes) and my plastic gloves.
Glazes are dificult. You often can buy pre-made glazes however its quite un original and the selection is very limited (especially for the 1200-1300 degree glazes – stoneware).
I was smart enough to copy some glaze recipies from my lessons but those were also very limited. finally i found this glaze recipie someone had gotten from some friendly potters in Leeuwarden. This was the only glaze that worked out on my first testing round and i loved it!
Here is an example of it applied to these teapots i made.
I have been keeping busy with so many new developments Including my own glaze trials and melting my kilns computer!
My oven is outside on my balcony as many of you know and it had a very short cord connecting it to its computer where i can digitaly regulate the tempurture process etc. We decided to mount the computer above the oven to prevent it from melting. However we mounted it right on top of where the oven door opens. So sure enough I opened the oven door one day so excited about how my glazing had turned out and 300 degree heat moved up from the door onto my oven computer. When i came back five minutes later it had fallen onto the oven and was melting into it.
After this shock we were unsure if it was safe to use. Joas (my husband) called the German company and in his best German figured out that they could repair it for a small price. So i had to be patient, about a month later i was able to use my oven again. And good thing to. I had allot of pottery that needed to be baked.
A limited selection of my ceramics are a now available in Groningen the Netherlands. I am selling them at a local ceramics showroom where ceramic artists from the area show and sell their work.
This is a big step for me. To be able to sell my iteams to the general public gives me a great feeling. I love the idea that a larg veriety of people will use my pottery in their daily lives!
So if your around Groningen sometime you should check it out!
Lastnight after going to the movies in Groningens city centre we walked by the ceramics shop and saw my pottery on display with my vision card. My proud husband made sure to get a picture with me in it!