opened the kiln this damp cold windy and grey morning first day of june and felt mildly disappointed

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once I got the pots out though everything seemed fine, as always not quite what I was expecting of course.

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I had managed to get a thicker coat of slip on some than would allow the scratched marks in the oxide to come though, especially on this one, except around the neck. now I know better how long to keep it turning in the slip, so I am looking forward to a pot that is like that neck all over.

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still a good result though, the main thing being that my decision to use the chun glaze was a good one, this glaze works on the coiled pots rather than the dry surfaces I had in mind before

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I’m also very pleased with the little plate I tried with slip and chun but no oxide, as the clay is a dark red stoneware it breaks through the slip and glaze on all edges enough to show all the mark-making. so I will get the other six fired this way.

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some new mark-making, inspired by the stone carving at New Grange on this slab piece, and it was in the sweet spot for the chun to melt enough for a lovely blue

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I have got freer with drawing on these little bottles

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which is working well with the runny watercolour quality of the black iron oxide I paint on under the slip

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on the littlest coiled bottle the scratched oxide is showing through very nicely. this is how it looked before glazing.

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I am wondering how crucial the type of iron oxide is to the blue colour. this is crocus martis, a purple refined iron oxide and it does seem to be giving some strong blues as opposed to the black iron oxide which can just be black as it’s so strong

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this is the first coiled jar I made, and I am very pleased with how the glaze came out. always a risk glazing pieces, and when it’s a large piece there’s more at stake. peering inside I see the inside is a beautiful blue  – a secret beauty.

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impossible to show though. these combed-up necks are so important to finishing the form

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and the bellies speak to me in a more full-bodied way than the slabbed pots can.

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now I am trying out drawing on the coiled pots

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and hoping I can use oxide slip and glaze in such a way that this will be visible but still have the veiled blue chun

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glaze effect. I must try the pink stoneware too, I think it should work well.