Raku Weekend

I had the pleasure of a real hands on Raku session this weekend where I set fire to my two eggs here. They even exploded out of a bin, that was a bit hair raising. You mould the clay in the usual way and bisque fire it. Then you glaze the pots and apply any oxides (used inside the turquoise pot) and stick them in a special Raku kiln and heat them to 1000 degrees. This isn't so out of the ordinary. The next bit is the quirky bit. You open the kiln whilst red hot and grab them with tongs, waft them in the air and shove them into a bin full of sawdust/hair/newspaper (combustibles) which set on fire from the heat of the pot. The unglazed clay turns black and the shock of the rapid air cooling crackles the glaze which can create exciting and spontaneous effects.