confusing moment today and a minor set back.

first of all, i loaded the tall bush today.  this time i loaded into one of the kilns which i tend to like less.  it has a different computer than i am used to, an orton autofire, and i understood that it needed lengths of time input in minutes.  j was standing by, lending me moral and technical support.  when i went to enter in the 24 hours soaks, there wasn’t enough space on the screen.  it was set up like this h.mmm.  h is hours, m is minutes.  finally j pointed out that a 3 digit soak in minutes could still be long enough so i programmed in a 999 minute soak.  this was after putting in a call to the kiln service and getting no answer.  i also sent off an email to orton, since i didn’t have much luck finding a users manual in the studio or online.  i talked with jamie a bit about what kind of schedules she uses.  at this point i’m still a little unclear, like, why hold at 90 degrees, or 140, instead of 100 or 150, when your going up in incriments of 25?  and why stop and do a major hold at 180 vs. 200 when the boiling point is 212 degrees.  ???  i’m trying to take r’s advice and just talk to everybody, see what they do and then work out my own preferences.

so tall bush is officially firing.  i am working on one more major bush and then i was going to use a big round mold to pop out a few more bases, when, after rolling out the slab for one,  i realized that highwater clay had closed for the weekend and i was out of clay.  totally out.  well, save about 8 pounds which will maybe be enough to finish one of the in progress peices i have going on.  maybe enough.

yikes.  i was planning to work a lot this weekend, and then focus on firing and glazing, but that’s going to have to change since i can’t get more clay until tuesday.  yikes.

i guess this will give me a chance do so some research, and work on the non clay aspects of this installation.

also, i borrowed some plaster slabs from j and starting playing with some slip i had laying around, trailing on the plaster with a 60 cc syringe in octopus like shapes.  ceiling hangy things?  christmas ornaments? we’ll see.

wednesday 7 pm-10 pm:big bush officially firing.

finally saw s in his studio and asked for his advice on what kind of firing schedule to use to fire the bushes.  i had also written to my former professor and asked r.  i didn’t really feel comfortable trusting my research alone.  most of the studio work gets fired at standard schedules, but they would be a bit too fast for my work, since it so big and also still quite wet.  s went through a detailed schedule with me and even programmed the kiln on his way out.  one of the reasons i am doing this residency is to learn  technical skills i’ve never gotten.

so r helped me put the big bush in the kiln (unfortunately they wouldn’t both fit) and i started the first of two 24 hour soaks.  it might be a a little overkill, especially after picking up the bush and realizing that it was far lighter than it looked but at least this way nothing should crack.  knock on wood.

n and friend were in the studio tonight.  it’s such a different atmosphere when other folks are around.  i don’t always get as much done, but it’s nice.

notes: it’s freezing.  i biked today and my bike is in great shape, post tune up.  also, dinner tonight: organic veggies and my new favorite grain, kasha.  yum!