First raku firing at home

The long weekend was the perfect opportunity to play with clay. I have been trying out various types to see which does what best. A few years ago I did a very brief raku course, I would say it fired me up if you pardon the pun. The drama of the firing process is something never to be forgotten but as I just want to make jewellery at present I decided to fire in my electric kiln.

kiln fired art

kiln fired artOnce fired the pieces we moved to the reduction chamber, a bucket with sawdust and a lid from an old pan.





kiln fired artAfter firing they need a pretty good scrub to clean off the carbon.





kiln fired artAnd here are my raku pieces. This was a steep learning curve, I think I should have let the fire in the bucket get going before putting on the lid, also the seal wasn’t tight enough. I got a lot of smoke but not much fire, and no iridescence. I will have another attempt soon, I’ve bought some long handled raku tongs to make things easier, and some more clay and glazes to try out. It didn’t work as I’d intended , yet, but I’m hooked on the raku process and playing with mud.




About eganj1

Obsession making arts crafts, and all things creative
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4 Responses to First raku firing at home

  1. Brilliant first attempt Jill! Looking forward to seeing more 🙂

  2. marci says:

    I like these a lot .. Love the crustiness of the texture ..
    I havent tried raku from what I ve read, a lot of the effect has to do with timing and that ‘s all in the experimentation … How long you wait before you toss the pieces in the reduction materials and how soon you put on the cover changes the effect . Also, the glaze itself.
    I always thought there was one type of raku …and that isnt the case.. There are lots of different raku glazes and they all have different results from white and black crackles to the iridescent metallic look of that gorgeous piece you have at your house..
    I have no doubt you ll get this figured out.. but I like the look of these as well.. so I would say ” Success” even thought there is no iridescence ..
    PS. I KNEW you would turn out to be ‘ clay girl ” LOL !…I knew once you tried it, it would be a medium that would call to you .

  3. jille says:

    Yes marci you are right, I am a mud slinger at heart, I love the smell and the feel of clay, but then I loved mud as a kid,I used to dig clay out of the garden and squish it into a pot and bake it in the sun, of course it rained and crumbled but I loved the feel of it.
    Surprisingly I’ve been making tiny flowers with porcelain, I have a few cool ideas so watch this space

  4. marci says:

    I know what you mean about the smell of clay .. For me , its like walking to a greenhouse. LOVE that smell…. and I love the pliability of clay.. the way it responds to your fingers.. the way it can be anything.. from delicate to fuzzy to rough and rugged.

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