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Troublesome kiln

I’m pretty annoyed with my little old Paragon test kiln.  A couple days ago a nearly new element burned out, from (I think) a bit of glaze that got on it.  Last night a bisque was interrupted when my breaker kept popping.  It’s an old breaker, so I’m hoping replacing it will solve the problem.  But my bisque didn’t get very hot, and cycled through the danger zone several times after I reset the breaker and tried to finish the firing.  A little depressing, as I had a couple nice teapots and a number of small effigy pipes in the firing.

In happier news, my last glaze firing turned out well.1skunka  Several big water pipes survived, including this gray-purple crow.  This little celadon skunk effigy pipe came through too, along with another just a bit bigger.purpcrowa

The crow has a luscious surface– click on the thumbnail to see larger versions of these pieces.

I really like the little skunk pipe.  When I was living in Las Vegas, a guy I knew had a skunk he’d rescued from a roadside zoo that was going out of business.  He was leaving town, and he somehow talked me into taking the skunk.  We named him Edmund Muskie, and he was a truly dreadful pet.  He would bite you quicker than a weasel, and of course skunks are just big fluffy weasels.   It took me years to find someone foolish enough to take Edmund Muskie off my hands.  He was a terrible pet, but for all that, he was very interesting.waterbuffb

The white water buffalo pleases me too.  This glaze has something of the surface quality of polished ivory and is quite lovely to the touch.  I threw the body of the buffalo and then turned it on its side.  The downstem and bowl were added on, and then I modeled the head.  Here’s a detail:waterbuffd


We’re getting ready to go up to New York to get the farm snugged in for winter.  I’ll be away from my wheel for a few weeks.  But I’ll try to post occasionally, anyway.