I had another glaze firing this week, and was on tenterhooks as I have had variable results from the last few, and there was a lot of white stoneware to glaze which is my least favourite, it can be quite boring.


I fired quite a few of the lidded jars I got fixated on making in June. I had waxed the intersection of jar and lid, and hoped that this would mean I could fire the lids in place. in fact, nearly all had to have at least few knocks with a mallet to pop them off, and one was damaged. this one was too tall with the lid in place, so it was fired next to it. I am very pleased with the way the barium carbonate “chalk beach” glaze worked in this firing on the grey coarse stoneware, its full of interest and accentuates the textures (achieved by the judicious use of a nylon spike type hairbrush).


this is the same glaze on the same type of pot but made in the white stoneware with some earth from my olive grove in Extremadura mixed into it. this has opened the clay up a little and the white blob is a piece of feldspar from the granite there. the hairbrush has not bitten into the clay as deeply, and there is more colour in the glaze, so it is different but still a very good result on this clay.


I have got this strong orange/green result with this combination of the copper/tin/dolomite glaze and the wood ash/china clay glaze, which I call “saltmarsh”, in a couple of other firings this summer, and now I know I can replicate it. I use two layers of clay, the white stoneware over crank; both clays are a bit bland, but working with the two means the crank stains the surface of the white clay to an extent, and I think that helps. I am very pleased with these big jars (there were three in the firing); I have two more to fire, so I am very tempted to do the same thing with them. I have one untextured and two with the hairbrush treatment out of this firing, and the copper/tin/dolomite glaze brings out the texture, as it breaks between the green and orange across it.


here is my classic bottle shape, with scoring, and the cobalt version of the dolomite glaze combined with the wood ash glaze. again, the glaze breaking nicely over the texture produced by opening up the white clay with the granite based earth.


this bottle has a bit of everything from Spain. the clay comes from the old tinajeria in Torrejoncillo where they still make big wine jars (tinajas) by hand from a coarse orange clay they dig out locally. they gave me about fifty kilos of it. it is delightful to work with, and although it loses its bright orange colour, it fires up to my cone ten to eleven firings quite happily. I also spread a handful of olive grove earth across it. the glaze is the same recipe as my “rust accretion” – the wood ash and china clay glaze – but the ash is from the ilex oak prunings I burnt in my wood stove last winter and spring. it obviously has rather a different mineral make-up from the hardwoods I burn in my woodstove in England. I am very pleased with it, it is very very dry, the colour is the same as the land and the dry stone walls around my finca, and it has a lot of bubble holes a bit like the classic volcanic glazes that Lucy Rie used.


this is the same glaze on the terracotta crank, on a bottle I made in May. its surface is all cratered with air holes and the double dip drapes itself over the shape like a shawl.


this is a new glaze combination which works quite well on the white stoneware. its from the same batch of clay which I opened up with the granite based earth. it has the cobalt/tin/dolomite glaze with a thin coat of the ilex oak glaze over it, which gives a great dry texture, and the dark blue/brown colour.


this is the copper/tin dolomite glaze with the ilex ash over, and you can see some good things around the bottom edge of the jar and the lid happening from the orange brown/light green breaks of this glaze.it would be good to just half cover the first glaze with the ilex ash one.


this is the odd one out in the group, because it is the precursor of more work using cone and funnel shapes.

the rest of the photos are here