Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Brake Disk Charger Part III: Embossed Cottonwood Leaf Bowl with....

Embossed Cottonwood Leaf Bowl with Brake Disk Charger
Having decided to use Eastern Cottonwood leaves and Vert Lustre glaze with Sea Green Mason Stain, I just had to figure out which particular bowl designs to develop. I knew I wanted to do four pieces - I  figured that if I did four, at least two should survive the process.

I decided to focus on three basic designs, with two variations on one of those: Large Applied Leaf Bowl, which is based on my Hanging Bird Bowl design; Embossed Leaf Bowl, a design I generally produce nested sets of four; and two Leaf Form bowls, in which the leaves themselves determine the bowl's shape - one larger and more irregular than the other.

I had to make a new mold for the Large Applied Leaf Bowl design - I had been intending to add that to my repertoire, having already added Tiny and Medium sizes to the original Small Applied Leaf Bowl. Otherwise, I used the large Sasaki Colorstone Stoneware Salad Bowls I had previously acquired as my molds for the other three pieces. (The Large Applied Leaf Bowl mold is made by humping a clay slab over a plaster mold of the center of the Sasaki Colorstone Stoneware Salad Bowl, so all four pieces had approximately the same contour.) The larger Leaf Form Bowl extended beyond the edge of the form and had a more irregular shape, much like a piece I had made in 2011; the smaller Leaf Form Bowl conformed to the mold fairly strictly, resulting in a more formal piece.

All the pieces fabricated, dried and sanded (I sand all the edges  using synthetic steel wool before bisque firing to make the pieces more pleasant to handle) and bisque fired, I prepared them for their final firing using the Sea Green Mason Stain (and, in the case of the Applied Leaf Bowl, Burnt Umber for the branch) and Vert Lustre glaze, popped them into a small kiln all by themselves and crossed my fingers that at least two would be acceptable.

Because, of course, I was out of time to do anything else....

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