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Getting the Most out of Ceramic Glazes and Underglazes: Using Commercial Ceramic Glazes and Underglazes to Achieve Color, Depth, and Complexity

Ceramic glazes and underglazes are varied and wondrous concoctions. Because they can be complex, as well as for ease of use and time savings, most of us use commercial ceramic glazes to some extent. Chances are, even if you are a ceramic-glaze-mixing master, you have a  few commercial ceramic glazes or underglazes around the studio for specific pottery applications. Here are several approaches and techniques to successfully identifying, applying and firing commercial ceramic glazes and underglazes.


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Five Great Ceramic Glazing Techniques: From Crystals to Majolica (Maiolica), a Guide to Beautiful Glaze Surfaces

Trying out new glazing techniques is always exciting because you don’t know quite where you’ll end up — even a mistake could hold a pleasant surprise! If you’d like to try something new, then one or all of these great glazing techniques may be just what you need. These three glazing techniques are as varied as their origins. Majolica (also spelled maiolica) originates from the Mediterranean and is the techniques of applying color on top of a glaze; mishima originates from the Far East is a technique of drawing on clay and inlaying colors; and crystalline glazes originated in Europe and require specific glazes and firing conditions. Whether you’re looking for a fresh look or looking to see what you can do ..


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Five Great Pottery Decorating Techniques: A How-to Guide for Decorating Ceramic Surfaces

Decorating ceramics is one of the most rewarding aspects of working in clay. It’s the time when you can add color and life to a bare clay surface that can show off your creative talents. There are scores of decorating techniques available and here are five successful techniques that are sure to add that extra flair to your work that will make it a masterpiece. Five Great Pottery Decorating Techniques: A How-to Guide for Decorating Ceramics with Slip Transfers, Chinese Brush Techniques, Ceramic Slip, Sgraffito, and More explains the ins and outs of these ever-popular ceramic decorating techniques!


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Successful Tips for Buying and Using Pottery Clay: How to Select, Process, and Test Clay Bodies for Better Results

Buying the right pottery clay is one of the keys to your success in the studio. There are many variables that determine the right pottery clay for your needs including color, temperature range, the type of pottery you make, and what kind of forming methods you use, just to name a few. When someone offers you a bunch of free clay, watch out! Most of the value in a piece of pottery is in the time and effort you invest, and the clay is one of the least expensive elements.


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Wood Kiln Firing Techniques and Tips: Plans and Instructions for Making a Wood-fired Kiln and Firing with Wood

Wood firing is the oldest firing method. Since humans first began to understand how fire hardened clay, we have been making ceramics, both in pits and in wood kilns. Now, with so many fuel options available to the potter, wood-fired kilns are more of a choice than a necessity. While wood firing isn’t easy, the results are incomparable. The work in wood kilns reveals the story of the firing, with pieces showing ash deposits and the path of the flame through the kiln. But not all wood kilns are built alike. Some are made for flashing from the flame, some are made for melted rivulets of ash and others still are designed to bury the ware in ash and make it crusty and craggy. Regardless of your wood firing aesthetic, the wood kiln plans and diagrams in this helpful guide will show you several ways to get started understanding and building wood kilns.


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Five Great Pottery Wheel Throwing Techniques: Tips on Throwing Complex Pottery Forms Using Basic Throwing Skills

Full of great pottery techniques, as well as ideas you can apply to any pottery project, these step-by-step wheel-throwing instructions will help you improve your pottery throwing skills from concept through completion. For a tool that really does one thing (spins in a circle), the number of techniques and results possible on the pottery wheel are just astounding. Glenn Woods explains how to throw upside down for taller, trimmer pots. Billy Lloyd throws porcelain that look like it’s machine made, but the techniques you acquire trying to duplicate this technique means you’ll be able to tackle most any form in any style. Lyla Goldstein loves the concept of saucers and how they elevate the cup to a new level­. A great gift idea! And if you saw Yoko Sekino-Bové you’d admire how someone of small stature can make such large pieces, but that’s the secret she has to share. Finally, Doug Peltzman demostrates throwing a great teapot form, one of the most difficult challenges for potters.


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