Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Ceramic workshop

As previously mentioned, I have been participating in a ceramics workshop at Signal Arts Centre. The workshops are held in periods of six weeks, and during the second round of workshops I was working on the book covers but also brushing up on the coil hand-building technique. I decided to make a set of four round coasters and since I had a bag of coloured glass blobs, I thought I would incorporate them into the design.


After making the coil coasters I scooped out their centres creating a divet to hold a glass blob each. I decided on the colours: blue, red, mauve and yellow. I glazed each coaster with "burnt sugar" glaze, which I then used a damp sponge to wipe. The red and the blue blobs melted perfectly on their coasters, but the mauve seemed harder to melt and has a cracked glass appearance. I imagine that the yellow blob must have reacted to the glaze as it appears more red (it is the one at the top) and it didn't melt evenly. 


I also made a coil cylinder, most likely to be used as a pencil holder. I glazed the outside with "burnt sugar" and again used a sponge to wipe it. The inside was glazed with a clear glaze.


Some years ago I was commissioned to do a stained glass piece for Enniscorthy Community Hospital, and I had some beautiful coloured glass left over. I brought a small compartmentalised storage box of glass bits to the ceramics workshop to use and share with the others in the group. Though the picture below shows only four compartments, there are actually 21 in the box, each containing a different colour or type of glass.


I added a few pieces of an irridescent green to the bottom of the coil pencil holder and it melted quite nicely!