Archive for April, 2009

First Look at April 24th Kiln Firing

I’ve loaded my second firing and it is approaching completion as I write this. The other picture is of the completed pots from my first firing.  I’ll post some detailed pictures soon. Click on the pictures for a larger view.  The bright blue matte glaze is a new one for me.

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April 27, 2009 at 7:16 pm Leave a comment

April 24th Kiln Firing – Cone 9 Reduction

Fully Loaded Kiln Before Firing

Fully Loaded Kiln Before Firing

I loaded the kiln yesterday and actually started my firing yesterday as well. This is what a full kiln of freshly glazed pots looks like before they are fired to 2250 degress F. The firing took about 15 hours and needs to cool for the next couple days before I can unload the work to look at the results. In the next week I will glaze my next batch of about 100 porcelain pieces. This next firing will be different from the last in that I will introduce more oxygen to the kiln during the firing and then slowly cool the kiln in hopes of producing crystal formation in my glazes – I’ll keep you updated with pictures from both firings as soon as I have them.

April 24, 2009 at 3:26 pm 2 comments

Time to Glaze the Pots

It's time to start galzing. I usually hit my glaze cycle every 6 weeks or so. This time I have gotten together about 200 pots to do two separate firings in the kiln.  One firing I am going to do a reduction firing.  This is the type of firing I usually do where I get the light blue colors for my celedons and the rich reds for the copper red glazes I use.  I am also going to experiment with an oxidation firing.  In this type of firing I plan on trying to produce more matte glaze surfaces with some crystal growth in the surfaces as well. These crystals will grow if I slow cool the kiln at the right rate. It will be interesting to see how some of the glazes I have been using for years will change based on an increase of oxygen in the kiln during the firing.

Glaze Room with glazes in the buckets

It’s time to start glazing. I usually hit my glaze cycle every 6 weeks or so. Pictured above is the glaze room. This is where I keep all the glazes which produce all the different colors and surfaces for my porcelain work. This time I have gotten together about 200 pots to do two separate firings in the kiln. One firing I am going to do a reduction firing. This is the type of firing I usually do, where the light blue color for my Celedon glazes and the rich reds for the copper red glazes are produced. This time however, I’m also going to experiment with an oxidation firing. In this type of firing I plan on trying to produce more matte glaze surfaces with some crystal growth in the surfaces as well. These crystals will grow if I slow cool the kiln at the right rate. It will be interesting to see how some of the glazes I have been using for years will change based on an increase of oxygen in the kiln during the kiln firing. I’ll post pictures of pots when they come out of the kiln.

April 20, 2009 at 2:45 pm Leave a comment

Spring Clean Up

Entrance to Plum Bottom Pottery

Entrance to Plum Bottom Pottery

Spent the day cleaning up the grounds around Plum Bottom Pottery. Got out the chain saw and limbed some trees. I also had to get up on the pergola and trim the vines that were eagerly taking over the house.

I have to admit I am not the fondest of heights, but someone has to do it! Now that the brush has been cleared out a bit, a whole lot more sunshine is getting to the gardens and the gallery. Angela Lensch, a resident jewelry artist here at Plum Bottom Studios, helped rake out leaves from the gardens. In about a month things should start getting green. The gardens and pond really are beautiful in the summer.

Up on the Pergola

Up on the Pergola

Angela raking away

Angela raking away

April 13, 2009 at 10:27 pm 2 comments

Inside Plum Bottom Pottery’s Kiln Building

Kiln Building

Kiln Building

This is the Kiln Building here at Plum Bottom Pottery. It houses the 65 cubic foot propane fired gas kiln. I fire this kiln about once every six weeks which is the amount of time it takes to fill this large kiln to the brim with pots. I work in porcelain so I fire the kiln to about 2300 degrees Fahrenheit. The black carbon on the outside of the kiln is the result of many reduction firings.

Plum Bottom's Kiln

Plum Bottom's Kiln

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Messy!

I finally received shelving to organize these plastic containers which hold the materials I use to mix glazes for my porcelain pots. It was a mess before. Now with the new shelving the space is organized and beautiful. It’s amazing how a simple shelving unit can transform a space from disaster to functional. This building will now be my primary area for mixing tests for new glazes. This summer I will be taking a class with Jeff Zamek at Penland School of Crafts on glaze testing and formulation. Hopefully you’ll see the fruits of this labor coming out of the kiln in the future with new glaze colors featured in the gallery.

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Rubber Mallet Fun.

Nothing like a little elbow grease to get things in order. I’m really happy with how it all turned out.

Ahhhh, finally organized!

Ahhhh, finally organized!

April 11, 2009 at 5:06 pm Leave a comment

Plum Bottom Fire

Plum Bottom Fire

Plum Bottom Fire

Yesterday there was a fire across the street from me on Plum Bottom Rd. It apperantly was caused by ashes from a wood stove left outside to cool. It was a windy day and it spread fast. Luckily the Door County fire department was faster, only a few old corn stalks and a bobcat(tractor) were injured in the incident.img_7159

April 9, 2009 at 9:50 pm Leave a comment


Inside Plum Bottom keeps you current with the latest images, news and Door County events at Plum Bottom Pottery, a Chad Luberger working studio gallery in Door County, Wisconsin. Featuring images and insight into Luberger’s porcelain pottery and sculpture.

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