Testing Results

I’m very happy with the test results. Tweaking these recipes in my cone 8 kiln so that I can get as close to possible before taking up precious room in the big gas fired cone 10 reduction kiln. All of these recipes are based on the Leach 40 – 30 – 20 – 10 recipe method which so far seems very stable. Getting the specific gravity dialed in is important.

Testing rolls right along

So I’ve got all the chemicals I need to make a vast amount of glazes in my simple palate and color range. Testing to cone 8 in my electric kiln so I can tweak it as close as I can before putting it into the big gas fired kiln at cone 10.

  • Zircopax white over temmoku
  • White over Celadon
  • Temmoku over Celedon with a dip into the red iron oxide (FE2O3) as a differentiator test
  • Clear glaze by itself
  • Zircopax white by itself.

Im really excited about these simple glaze combinations. Along with red wild clay slip from the lake and black slip that goes to cone 10 I have a wide range of decorating possibilities to play with.

Previous Celadon glaze tests with incrementing FE2O3 from 2% to 12%


Testing the specific gravity of the glaze with hydrometer.


The only thing I may want to do different is to get more flux into the white glaze to have it run, almost like a Nuka style glaze over Temmoku.

John Britt’s Complete guide to High Fire Glazes has enough information to keep me busy for many years! Big thanks to Jay Benzel of Benzel Pottery for loaning it out to me.

Another thing I was working on was pulling technique and made a nice delicate serving spoon. Beautiful right?!

Not anymore! Haha! The spoon is just a spoon. ┬áThat’ll learn me to put stuff on the counter!

Third Iteration

So I’m in the middle of doing the third iteration of my Kusamono / Shitakusa vessels and they are coming along nicely. I love love love this clay. Its very porous and I think that it would be good for the plantings in such a small place to be able to get enough oxygen to the roots. This is the advantage of terracotta, not only is it cheaply produced and low fired but it is porous as well. We’ll have to keep in mind that the plants that are paired with these pots may need to be watered more than something that is in a plastic or fully vitrified pot. I’ll have to prove this out but it seems that if the roots can get more oxygen then they will flourish for longer.

Keeping the pots from cracking by wrapping them to carve the hard clay.
First two done!
All 8 carved. Got a bit fancy with some texturing on a few.

I have been getting heavily into Kusamono since I learned the term from my friend Chuck. This is something that I’ve never seen before. Mushroom cultivation for Kusamono! It seems to be a high investment in effort and time for a small payoff but for originality I give it two thumbs up. If you care to dive into the way other mushrooms are grown the success rate is a bit higher and the technique should translate very well to the more decorative mushrooms such as the beautiful Amanita Muscaria which reminds me of Christmas.

There is an excellent article dealing with creating Mushroom Kusamono that I found – http://ofbonsai.org/species-specific/accent-plantings/simplified-cultivation-of-mushrooms-for-accents-and-kusamono – Just beautiful!