Raku is one of the most exciting and popular techniques in ceramics. From the ball of clay to the final fired piece, you're in control of every creative aspect along the way, and the basic raku process is within the reach of potters of any age or skill level. But when the technically skilled and highly creative artists turn to raku, they explore and experiment to take the medium to an inspiring level.
This updated and revised Ceramic Arts Handbook edition of Advanced Raku Techniques contains information on forming, glazes and glazing, kiln construction and firing, as well as inspirational stories from some of the most influential raku artists working today. For any potter who has experienced the excitement and immediacy of the raku process, this book is a must.
In raku firing, you know that sound of the kiln with a gas burner roaring, the blast of heat you get when you remove your work, and the focus you have moving your work to a container of combustibles. Those who have never done raku don't know what they're missing. But even as simple as the technique is, there are many variables to explore, and in Raku Firing: Advanced Techniques you can take a look at some of the techniques these professionals have to offer.
Marcia Selsor paints large raku plaques with cattle or horses. She started making the slabs when she lived in Montana. One day while driving home, she saw black angus against fresh green grass and immediately thought raku! Shortly after, she saw mustangs racing in the wild and wanted to do a series for those as well. Using large Raku fired Slabs, she captures the essence of Montana and reveals the process.
George Juliano says that a gas kiln was difficult to find within his school budget so he decided to build his own Portable Gas Raku Kiln. Beginning with a 55 gallon drum, some ceramic fiber and a few items from the hardware store, George quickly makes an inexpensive raku kiln with the help of the auto mechanics teacher problem solved. See his solution in this detailed step by step how to.
Tom Radca has worked in pottery for more than 20 years specializing in Large Raku Platters and hand cut tiles. He says that in his first venture into making large platters, he made more than 70 of which only 8 survived. Through experimentation and determination, he figured out all the technical issues from forming through firing and shares the how to results here. See how he does it.
The following sampling and 22 more articles are what you'll find in Raku Firing: Advanced Techniques
How do you fire 5 foot tall vases? Carl Gillberg enjoys Large scale Raku and this review of his forming and firing techniques gives you an insight into the complexities and equipment necessary to handle the really big stuff.
A technical ceramics class was a revelation for Lila Bakke and it helped unlock the mysteries of many aspects of pottery. One task was to originate clay and glaze recipes and with her Raku Glaze Trials she accomplished both.
If you know the rainbow effect of oil on water, you can get that effect on your raku surface with the Valdez Flashfiring method developed by John Sherrill.
Ceramic fiber is one of the greatest inventions in modern ceramics and Daryl Baird makes a lightweight Portable Fiber Raku Kiln from the material. You'll find complete plans for the kiln and the wheeled base that makes it easy to move around.
For the serious professional, a way to get a body of work produced quickly and efficiently is paramount. Ronda Liskey details how to construct and safely operate a Production Raku Kiln.
All advanced techniques begin with a solid understanding of the process. John Ramer Sherrill explains how to do Successful Raku to overcome the frustrations of mastering the basics in this recap of how to do raku.