Thursday, November 11, 2010

FIRE IT UP! Firing clay tiles

Helloooo everyone!

I'm not a pro at painting and firing tile, but I do dabble and have some fun once in a while so here is a bit of my dabble.

In this case I just started with a normal 6 x 6 clay tile like you would use on any tile floor.
I use Duncan ceramic paint or any paint I can "borrow" from my dad.  You can draw out your painting beforehand if you want, but when I do abstract type designs like the ones I'm doing here I just start right in throwing paint around.  The tricky part with these paints is many of them look nothing like the color they are going to be once finished.

This is taken shortly after getting the paint on ~ it dries fast if you  put a thin coat on, but in areas like the circles I wanted a more consistent color so I put it on thicker which takes overnight to fully dry.The clumps you see are from the paint I used that has little crystals in it that explode with star-bursts of color. Even after painting the entire surface you still get areas where the paint is inconsistent after firing. It's sort of like the prize in a box of Cracker Jacks ~ you never know what you're going to get which to me is part of the beauty.

After they are fully dry I load them up in the kiln, use a 016 cone, gently close the lid while whispering a prayer and hit the power button.  A cone 016 gets to a temperature of up to 1400 degrees before it bends the cone and shuts the kiln off. I don't go near the kiln until the next day and still the clay is warm.
Every time I approach the kiln to see what the end results were my heart picks up a beat with excitement and fear.  I lift the lid looking heavenwards saying "please don't be cracked, please don't be cracked".  It's like opening a present every time!
The end results
I like to float them on plexi-glass and put a frame around them, use them for hot plates, or incorporate them into a tile job for the back splash or floor.

Here I used some I painted for the front entryway at my gallery as accent tiles
So this is just a tiny part of what can be done with a kiln, paint and tile. Maybe sometime I can show you some hand thrown pieces I've done. In fact, I suddenly have the desire to buy some clay....

Peggy ~ Goodgosh ~ GG




Peppercorns said...

I'm go glad you showed us the tiles, I love them. Your talent never ceases to amaze me.

OK enough nice stuff for today. :0)

VintageEmbellishment said...

Just another little talent you have!
I am in awe!
And a kiln to go along with it...what other talents are you keeping hidden????
What do you do with the ones you don't want???
I have a suggestion for those :)

goodgosh said...

Thank you for the kind comments, and pepper you didn't overdo it so don't worry. :)

You mean the ones that crack in the kiln or when I drop them coming up the stairs VE? What's your suggestion?

Doodle said...

Nice Peggy. You are one multi-talented woman. Didn't know you also had a kiln. My my, what will be next?

Broken pieces mortared into boxes? Love the accent tiles to your shop. Very cool!

- said...

Beautiful work you have shown us here.

Doodle said...

Love the hotplate idea. What about coasters? Would they work as coasters too????

jj said...

ahhh, I love the mystery of not knowing until you open the kiln.
Thanks for showing the steps through the whole process.
At first I thought VE was asking what do you do with the talents you don't want....LOL!