Opening the kiln for any ceramicist is an exciting and eager time. Especially having to wait 2 whole days to be able to see the results of your loving work once the kiln has cooled. When glaze firing, the temperature is extremely high, so once the required temperature is reached (which takes near enough a day), you have to wait almost another day for it to cool right down to be able to open the door. Otherwise… it wouldn’t be a pretty sight. I have known people to singe their eyebrows for being too impatient and opening the kiln door too early! It can also ruin your work when the cold air suddenly hits it, causing the ceramics to crack.
Luckily I always manage to contain myself when waiting to open the kiln, and think the best for my work, not my patience – although god knows how!
Even if trying to recreate a particular colour or effect, you never really know exactly how it will turn out because everything seems to have a mind of its own inside the kiln. I often have a lot of ‘happy accidents’, then again some not-so-happy accidents.
The last time I opened the kiln a few weeks ago, I was excited to see the results of some new pieces, but then I got to the back of the kiln…
Something had exploded, causing broken bits of clay to stick to the pieces around it. Not good! I know what it was, it was from a bowl I made as a test using hardened casting slip, and it was a little on the thick side, so I think there might have been some air bubbles trapped.
Such a shame, this heart dish above would have made a lovely piece! Never mind, there are still plenty of others available on my website
Don’t forget to visit the Valentines section on my website for the perfect handmade gifts for your loved ones. Valentine’s is just around the corner!