This morning got off to a disappointing start. I tried to find someone to share a kiln with me, so I could fire my tests, but I was told that nobody would want to fire their porcelain with my saggers because they’re too dirty/smokey. So I thought I’d either have to pay to fire a kiln half-full, or else make a bunch more work without knowing if it would turn out, thus paying a lot of money for materials that might ultimately be wasted.
But when I explained my dilemma to Klara, she offered to let me fire the saggers in a small electric kiln, just this one time, to test my project’s feasibility. The kiln doesn’t go to cone 11, the temperature to which I’m aiming to fire this particular kind of porcelain. So I decided to ask her to program the kiln to cone 8, with a one and a half hour soak. When I fire at home, I fire to cone 7 with the same soak, and cone 10 ends up falling in the kiln. I’m curious to see what happens. We put a cone 9 in to check to see how hot it gets at the end (there’s no spy to check during the firing). I’m thankful that she’s letting me run this test!
First I had to get the saggers ready, though. My actions prompted several people to stop by and discuss my work and ideas. It was really nice to get so many different opinions on how to sagger fire, and it was fun to hear all of the different predictions on what’s going to come out of the kiln.
By the time I was done, it was 1:30 and I had a headache from not eating lunch. I was just toting my extra tiles back to my studio space when I was asked to go eat at the restaurant around the corner (see above picture). How perfect is that? So I went, as Coach Kimzey would say, “faster than a gasoline-soaked cat running through a campfire” up to my space to set down my ware board. Another surprise was waiting for me there on my table! It was an early birthday package from my good friend, Lauren. It contained a very nice note and two pins. One is the classic mustache depicted above, and its mate, a row of little hearts. I started laughing rather loudly when I opened the mustache one and put it on. I think I probably scared the people around me. It was worth it! Thank you, Lauren! You made my day! The Mustache and Meredith and I had a very nice lunch. We met Peteris (who, as I’m learning, has a mischievous sense of humor) there too, but he was almost done, so we just said hello and goodbye.
Well, I’m going to go check the kiln and then spend some more time writing, writing, writing. That’ll be my life until this kiln comes out on Wednesday and I see what I can and can’t do!
Any suggestions on what to name my Mustache?