Water etched clay

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Lesson for pottery students

Lesson for pottery students

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  • 1. Water Etched Porcelain Les Blakesboragh "Derwent“; Large Porcelain bowl / Deep etched / unglazed made 04' Dia. 300mm x 200mm h
  • 2. Resist Decoration
    • Common technique involves application of design with a resist medium over bone dry clay, followed by aggressive damp sponging, removing clay, leaving resisted areas in raised relief.  
    • This technique is especially suited to fine grained clays like porcelain or porcelaineous stoneware, but could be used on just about any clay.
  • 3. Materials/ Equipement
    • Pencils
    • Paper
    • Paint Brushes
    • Acrylic Paint
    • Water
    • Sponge
    • Bone Dry Porcelain piece
  • 4. Vocabulary
    • BONE DRY :  Completely dry (and very brittle) state clay must reach before firing. 
    • CLAYBODY : Clay mixture formulated of clays and other ceramic raw materials to give desired working characteristics.
    • GREENWARE :  Any dry, unfired clay form.
    • PORCELAIN :  High fired vitreous claybody containing kaolin, silica, fluxes, and often ball clay to increase plasticity, with total clay component not more than 50%.  Usually pure white or “eggshell” in color, some porcelains may fire translucent where thin.
    • RESIST :  Material used in glazing and decorating which can be applied to surface to prevent adhesion of slip or glaze.  Resists may be in the form of tape or adhesive-backed paper, or liquid.  Common liquid resists include water-emulsion WAX RESIST, hot wax, and LATEX.  See WAX RESIST, LATEX, SHELLAC RESIST. 
    • Shellac Resist : Resist technique using shellac, which gives an extremely durable resist surface.  Common technique involves application of design with shellac over bone dray clay, followed by aggressive damp sponging, removing clay, leaving resisted areas in raised relief.
    • Texture : is the surface quality or "feel" of an object, its smoothness, roughness, softness, etc. Textures may be actual or simulated.
    • Translucency : is the material property of allowing light to pass through.
  • 5. Here´s How
    • 1. Sketch out your idea.
    • 2. Lightly pencil the design onto bone dry porcelain greenware.
    • 3. Paint your design with a paint brush onto bone dry greenware.
    • 4. Let it dry thoroughly. If you're in a hurry, you can use a hair dryer set to ´hot.´
    • 5. Carefully wipe back layers of clay with a wet sponge. The clay will stay raised where you have applied the resist. Rinse sponge often. Use plenty of water. Your design should “POP-OUT”.
    • 6. After drying, the process may be repeated for layers of various depths.
    • 7. Decorate, glaze and fire as usual. The resist will burn out in the bisque firing.
  • 6. Tips
    • 1. Be gentle with the greenware piece. Many excellent pieces have been broken at the last moment. Be careful not to use too much water at any one time, otherwise cracks may appear, especially on thin ware.
    • 2. Further effects can be achieved by additional carving.
    • 3. Fire the porcelain pieces as hot as you can. Many porcelains are translucent at cone 10 (2350 degrees farenheit).
    • Celadon glazes or a transparent glaze make the best glazes for these types of pieces.
    • Sometimes “water etched” artists use no glaze prefering to leave the white porcelain showing.
  • 7. Tips
    • This process is also called Shellack Resist and Hydro-Abrasion.
    • Some people use Shellack. It is more durable than acrylic paint as a resist but is harder to clean up. Some people try wax but it isn’t as durable. I think acrylic paint is a good middle ground. All three burn out in bisque firing leaving little to some residue.
    • Ceramics Art Daily (online) has a good article about this process.
  • 8. Process Here a layer of resist is applied and the clay is washed with a wet sponge. Then a second layer of resist is applied and washed again. This creates multiple levels on the piece.
  • 9. Les Blakesboragh IXL Ginko ; 2006 deep etched / unglazed / polished / made '06 120mm ht x 190mm x 127mm Oval Form; “Homage to Sally deep etched / unglazed /polished /made '05 140m ht x 200mm x 130mm
  • 10. Les Blakesboragh Bowl "Macdonald Ranges Eucalyptus“;  deep etched / unglazed / polished / made '06 / 170mm ht x 200mm dia. Bowl "Forest Floor“;   made '06/  170mm ht x 200 dia.
  • 11. Les Blakesboragh Oval form " Derwent River“; deep etched/unglazed/ made 2006/ 100mm ht x 110 - 80mm dia.   Oval Form; In the long grass with Claudia Rose ; deep etched / unglazed / polished / made '06 / 200mm ht x 170mm x 120mm
  • 12. Arne Ase Bowl ; Porcelain  Dia. 35cm  1993 Bowl ; Porcelain  Dia. 30cm  2001
  • 13. Arne Ase Porcelain Bowl ; h 25cm  1990 Bowl; Porcelain h35cm 2001
  • 14. Arne Ase Porcelain Painting; 30cm×55cm Porcelain Relief; 30cm×60cm  1990 年
  • 15. Tom Coleman
  • 16. John Takahara
  • 17. David Scott
  • 18. The End