white on white 2.23.2017

I’ve got some more white on white bowls completed.

bowls2I made a bowl similar to these a couple months ago, and you can see pics of that bowl in this post. The glaze on these latest bowls turned out differently this time. Not as white, a little yellower, more rustic looking, and thinner. Not a bad look – just different from what I expected.

bowls3

And if there’s one thing I can count on with ceramics, it’s often being surprised at how different the final piece looks – the difference from my expectations when glazing the bisqued piece compared to the final fired piece.

When I was ready to glaze this group of new bowls, I had to wait a couple of weeks for a new batch of matte white glaze to be mixed up. The studio where I work, Midwest Clay Project, offers a dozen or so pre-mixed glazes in big buckets that I often use, (along with glazes I purchase from Amaco or Coyote.) I incorrectly assumed the new batch of matte white glaze would look the same as the old batch. I was wrong.

bowls4

When I asked the studio manager about it, he explained that even though he uses exactly the same chemicals from the exactly same providers in exactly the same quantities and proportions when he mixes the glazes, each bag of chemicals or raw materials may differ slightly. Even when the chemicals are dug out of the ground, if they’re scooped from a different area, the composition may be slightly different. And in this case, that slight difference gave the latest batch of matte white glaze a yellower color and a thinner consistency.

bowls5

The consistency issue is my own doing, and happens because I’m not yet knowledgeable and familiar with how “thick” a glaze should be when I brush it on or dip into it. But I’m learning! And sometimes, these “errors” are Happy Mistakes!

bowls1

All issues aside, these bowls turned out quite lovely, and the not-so-white and thin appearance of the glaze gives the bowls a rustic, weathered, well-loved look. These bowls are available for purchase at my Etsy shop.

 

 

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