So, there is a reason that I haven't been posting the last month. I am too busy learning to be humble. Every potter or ceramic artist goes through these times. It seems that I have been having such marvelous success with work the last year that I was due for a "kick in the shorts"!
About a month ago my entire kiln load of glazed work was an epic fail! Every piece came out brown. Every single piece. I was bewildered, aghast, angry, frustrated, cranky, mystified, freaked out, and, downright confused. So, the last month I've been trying to figure out what the heck happened. Test after test after test after test. To date, the only thing I can come up with...........is the clay. Now, I've been using this clay about a year. But suddenly, it is totally different. It's like it sucked up all the color in my glazes, turned mud-colored and left behind brown. This experience has totally paralyzed me in the studio. I've barely created anything new! I'm afraid. I spend a great deal of time creating a piece and can't bear the thought of another load being awful! And the search continues for a new clay.
So, what to do with all of the pieces I've made and bisque fired and need to be glazed so I don't have a total loss. Well, it seems I have found one silver lining in the midst of this mess. Underglazes. So, I took 2 of the butter dishes I had made in my "bad clay" and I used underglazes on them, hoping it wouldn't be "sucked up" by that darn clay. And, voila'. Success. Not only success, but, in my opinion, something new to add to my repertoire. Hoping the rest of the pieces turn out as well. And I say this with all humility!!!