Saturday, March 03, 2007


After coming back from a week and a half vacation in Ireland, I discovered that the oak tree tile trim was completely dry and ready to be bisqued fired. Unfortunately, it had warped pretty badly.

This picture just shows a small portion of the several feet of trim I tooled out but after checking it all out tonight, I realized that most, if not all of the clay work I've done is unusable.

There are few reasons for this warping. The biggest cause is that when I was done forming, to move the clay out of the jig, I had to lift on each end of the 20" section. Since it was still wet, it obviously bends. Though it's laid out flat to dry, apparently the clay has good "memory" and tries to go back to that shape it took when it was removed from the jig.

I also think a small part of it has to do with using recycled clay. From the many dry scraps of clay in making the oak tree mural, I added some to a tub along with water and a lot of mixing. The problem was that I don't think the moisture was evenly distributed, leaving drier clumps in the wet clay. This may be why the trim appears bumpy.

Regardless, I have to start all over. I have a new plan in place and tomorrow it's off to buy fresh clay.


Anonymous said...

Strange how your clay tiles paralleled your sense of humor while you were away.

I...Can't quite seem to... Make the connection...


Joe said...

That's pretty true about my warped sense of humor, but the clay also got a lot more sleep than I did.