February 20, 2010

Pottery class 2

This was the second day of our pottery class: the day of the firing of our treasures. Some people had done some great homework and produced wonderful pots; Dan and I were not among them ...

The weather started out nice enough and we were scoffing at the weather forecast of 40% chance of rain: it was perfectly clear and sunny, but that would change. Tim instructed some of the guys to build the fire pit to specifications. He then added saltillo tiles to the floor and loaded the pots in a specific sequence. Everything was then covered, and four fires were lit after we put all our positive energy into the impending firing process.

Then the task was one of carefully tending the fire as it could not get too hot initially: the pots had to increase in temperature gradually or they would blow up. As the fire got hotter, the weather got colder and nastier until in the afternoon we were in a full blown storm in which 0.25 inches of rain and snow fell. Tim saw the squall coming and we all rushed to put the majority of the remaining wood on the fire for the final "soak". It was an out-and-out bonfire which kept burning for a long time before the snow finally did it in.

We came home well-smoked and cold, but a hot shower took care of that. Tomorrow we get to uncover the pots ...

1 comment:

Gail said...

But Dan and you did make something and that is in itself great.

I have studies these photos and the idea of curing this way is wonderful. I hope to try it with our native clay.