Janne Robberstad

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RAKU!

By spotogspindel | May 23, 2013

I am so excited! My friend and colleague Katrine taught me how to raku-fire pottery today. It´s something I´ve been wanting to learn for ages. And finally we found a day when we could get it done. Lucky for me, Katrine also took some photos, so now I can show you at least part of the process. First thing´s first. The pottery I actually made months ago, and Katrine did the first raw-fire quite a while back too. So today started with putting glaze on the pieces. This clay is a very rough clay, half of it is sand (chamotte), which makes it very sturdy. Something it needs to survive the quick temperature-changes. We also use a special glaze for the rake-clay. And finally we are ready to go:

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This would be the before-picure 😉

Katrine checking the oven. which can be made relatively easy from an old water-tank…

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The oven is heated with propane, and it takes only about half an hour. There´s a peaking-hole in the lid, and when you can see that the glaze is starting to melt, it´s time to turn off the gas, remove the lid, and take the pieces out.

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First stop is a pile of sawdust. By leaving the piece in the air, the glaze cracks up. The longer you leave it, the more cracks. But you don´t want to leave it too long either, before burying it. The heat of the pottery ignites the sawdust, and you wrap it around the piece. This way you´ll choke the flames, and the sawdust will charcoal right into the pottery and make it black.

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After a while, say 10 minutes, I dig the pieces out again, and put them into water.

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I can´t believe nothing cracked! It goes directly from 960 degrees in the oven to 15 degrees in the air.

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Into the water. Making it almost boil….

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The color doesn´t look like much. Dusty pink. But just you wait and see 😉

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Scraping off the charcoal outside before taking it all inside again to give it a thorough round with a brush.

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And voilá! Aren´t they cute?! The quick temperature-changes makes the glaze all metallic.

Topics: Technique | 2 Comments »

2 Responses to “RAKU!”

  1. katy Says:
    May 23rd, 2013 at 20:52

    sweet little houses i love doing raku!!!

  2. gail Says:
    May 26th, 2013 at 18:11

    Wow, what a fun adventure! Adorable results, too.

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