Sunday, January 15, 2006



Above is a picture of some beads that were fired either in the pit or in a can with sawdust. The range of grays, blacks and inbetween shades is incredible and is solely the result of the fire and smoke on the beads. I have found that using porcelain clay as a body gives a softer and wider range of colors. These beads were mostly cast from porcelain slip. It gives the bead a creamier quality and I think that the whiteness of the porcelain is more open to trapping the carbon from the smoke than other clay bodies. These beads were bisque fired to cone 06. I am going to try cone 010 as I have read that bisquing at that temperature, which is considerably cooler than 06 will leave the clay body more porous and again trap the carbon better. I will surely post those results but it will be awhile as I haven't bisqued the beads yet, and in fact I haven't even made them. I am still working on a pile that I bisqued at cone 06. And before I forget to mention it, the beads in the above picture are for sale on the Justbeads.com site in the Ceramic category. Currently the Beads of Clay Yahoo Group is putting forth a group effort to put as many artist beads made of clay on the Ceramics categoryas possible. Last I looked we were up to 50. A great chance to see some of the best beads being made by ceramic artists today. You can learn more about this group at http://www.beads-of-clay.org/.

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