Went totally to pot…

Went totally to pot…

Hi there

Thanks for popping in. Just got back from a rare Raku Day. In case you’re not familiar with the term, Raku is a Japanese form of pottery, firing bisque clay at low heat, and then immersing it in water to make it crackle. It is the most unpredictable artform I have ever tried – you really never know what you’re going to get. You think it said turquoise on the glaze bucket – it comes out brown. You are sure it said green on the tin – it comes out metallic copper. I have participated several times now, and have learned to have absolutely no expectations, to just go with the flow, enjoy the process, and accept what happens.

Today was no exception. I had thrown and turned several pieces in readiness for this long awaited day, and was all fired up, if you’ll pardon the expression!

The first bowl of mine to come out of the water looked fabulous. Yippee!! Alas, when I scrubbed off the burnt sawdust – it cracked more than I wanted – into 4 pieces! Bummer!

Lovely crackle though.. I am going to turn these fragments into art. You wait. It ain’t over yet….

There was one nice white one in my batch…

… and a very cool turquoise one..

but the rest of mine were what one loosely terms shit brown. You scrub it till your arm aches, hoping that a little turquoise or copper may peep through, but nay. Not today.

Still had a brilliant time though! Such a super time actually. Because, quite simply, the people were so lovely.

I hooked up with my friend Sue Fox, which was great. She’s a super talented potter who makes spectacular figures. I bought this one from her years ago, and it still has pride of place in our home.

And today, Sue had a fantastic haul too. One after another, they came out beautifully. Being the perfectionist she is, she was lamenting tiny flecks and imperfections,

until Julie and I right-sized her dilemma!

Here we have lovely Julie, whose little yellow creation blew in the kiln, taking out one of mine and a few others in the process. The orange one I had earmarked as a pressie for Sam Crowe got splattered with the yellow glaze from Julie’s – so it will be perfect for Sam!! Julie was thinking of gluing hers back together; I managed to convince her to let it go. There’s only so much you can salvage!

It’s brilliant. I love it. Sure, when it works it feels great. But when it doesn’t you just have to chalk it up to experience and move on.

I’ve already signed up for the next Raku Day at the end of October. Can’t wait. So between now and then, I have to throw and turn another batch of pots and bowls, so that I can join in the Raku process.

Pottery. It’s a fabulous hobby. I highly recommend it.

Love and hugs

Barb xxx

21 thoughts on “Went totally to pot…

  1. The colours and effects are amazing. We watch the pottery throw down on tv and have seen how unpredictable this can be. Must make it even more special when it looks so lovely. What a great day xx

  2. That looks like a wonderful day. That pottery technique looks amazing. No wonder you have signed up for the next one. I help at Felting Workshops. It isn’t so unpredictable as Raku but for me who is usually so precise it is a challenge. I have made some good bits. My favourites are the bowls. Enjoy your evening. Take care. Hugs xxx

  3. My goodness, you are all wrapped up in your winter woollies! Did the world turn during the night? Are you living in the north now? Lol. It has been another beautiful day in Argyll. Lovely and warm. Long may it continue.
    Wow. Your turquoise pot is stunning as was the one which cracked. You are a very talented bunch. I look forward to seeing what you do with the cracked pot. Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Lots of love. Hxx

  4. Good to see you so relaxed and happy. Shame about the broken pots but I am sure you willcome up with a way to utilise them.
    I’m having a whale of a time with the stamps and some of the better results will be put in a teak frame which has 3 A5 apertures and it will be hung on my wall.
    Stay safe. 🍒🍒🍒

  5. Hi Barb,
    Your enthusiasm comes through every time you write about your pottery classes, even when there are a few hiccups. Love that turquoise one, such a lovely colour. Pleased to see that you were well wrapped up because if it was anything like up here, it was blooming cold. None of my joints enjoy the cold! Love and hugs,Alison xx

  6. Lovely colours, even brown has its place. So glad you can relax about the mishaps. Great to see you with like minded people.
    Have a good day tomorrow xx

  7. I’m glad although your pots weren’t all that you hoped for you had a great day Barbara. I love the blue one and look forward to seeing what you do with the pieces, and the pot and bowl that were successful turned out beautifully, especially the blue one, that is a gorgeous colour. x

  8. Mosaic table tops are great in the garden. Just saying. (I drop a lot of mugs..) You might need to beg other people’s rejects or stock up a bit first. I wonder if Stuart can turn pottery pics into card…

  9. So excited to hear about your pottery wheel, kiln etc and your pottery studio being created by Dave. I just loved pottery it was so therapeutic lost in pummelling clay, coiling, turning creating decorative tiles and dipping pieces, the whole process. Love seeing your results so keep posting the pieces, with your creativity, your brain must be stuffed with ideas and the hands trying to keep pace!!!! So pleased you can switch off and have your time xx

  10. I bet you are going to turn the broken pieces into a tile. Would look fabulous. Glad you are having such a good time. You pack so much into your life thank you for spending time with us in the SHAC shack xx

  11. What a great day you had, love the white and the turquoise. Guess it’s like the gelli plate you don’t know what it’s going to be like. It has turned chilly, our heating came on for the first time yesterday morning on its automatic setting. We had a fantastic day out in t he sunshine on Tuesday so quite a turnaround.

  12. Hi Barb, what beautiful bowls and colours, even the one that cracked, would love to see how you use that in an arty creation. You have obviously found an outlet for your creative spirit, which is not related to your day job, and it fab to see you getting so much enjoyment, love those figurines. Take care and stay safe everyone. Bx

  13. Barb I hope you haven’t thrown your 4 pieces away!!! Stick them together with PVA glue. I did this to a raku piece many years ago, and it is still going strong on the garden wall. I did put several layers of glue all over, including the back. So love raku. Am making a raku kiln out of my old electric kiln which caught fire. Such a wonderful process and so exciting. Well done in the progress you are making, you talented lady. X

  14. Hi Barb. Why not stick your lovely pot together with PVA glue. I did it to a raku piece that broke into loads of pieces years ago. Covered it in several coats back and front. Been on my garden wall for years. It just doesn’t change colour like other raku pieces. Your pot looked so good. You are doing well, you talented lady.

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