Controlled Reduced Cooling 2

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Not all of the pots in this firing turned out to be brown. Despite our inexperience this small kiln managed to produce half a dozen good pots.                                                                        We were at once intrigued by the startling effects on this bottle from the Pinus carribea firebox.  The steps from bare clay through red blush to black edge effect, followed by increasing thicknesses of actual ash glaze are particularly vivid here. This pattern occurs with other clays and other species of wood.

Returning to the pots from our first firing: the pot above and the two inside the white rectangle on the right were made from the same clay, and subjected to the same ash type. The pot with the cones leaning on it was refired in a small gas kiln according to a firing schedule that I had been playing with for some time in attempts to enhance the colors of pots previously fired in the salt kiln, or fired with shino glazes in a gas kiln. The effect of applying my preferred refire regime to this pot struck me as remarkable.

Some of the color differences between the  before image (on the left) and the after image can be attributed to the use of color film twelve years ago and the more recent use of a digital camera, but there is no dismissing the development of a strong red blush near the wad mark, and the conversion of an unlovable brown on the left to  a much more desirable dark brown or black on the right. The image below was even more promising.

The unrefired pot on the left is the bottle on the right in the white rectangle above, and the refired,  cone marked pot is on the right. Many of the features of the section of pot in the topmost image on this page have reappeared in the refired pot. Most striking is the black edge effect, but the blush around the new wad marks and the blackening of some previously brown areas are quite clear. This seemed a clear indication that cooling conditions were of some importance in color development.

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