The tile project I’ve been working on for the past few days has been glaze-fired and the results are in. I will show you in just a minute. First, a couple of comments:
- This project completed itself in no time flat, when usually clay projects take weeks to go through the processes. This one was quick because
- I used already bisque-fired commercially-made tiles – I did not have to form them, wait for them to dry, and fire them.
- I could underglaze the tiles one day, glaze them the next. Often I don’t have time to get the steps done so closely together.
- I had a large enough project to fill a kiln. Glazed tiles take a lot of room in the kiln – they must not touch each other nor can they be stacked. So, this time I did not have to wait for enough items to make a reasonable kiln load – I had plenty, given those requirements. Full speed ahead!
- I mentioned my worries about the tiles sticking to the kiln shelves. No problems at all. Let me show you three samples that reveal the situations that emerged:
The top tile cleaned up well, the wax did its job, and there were no glaze blobs to speak of in the indentations and none on the raised areas. This is a best result.
The next tile, bottom left, had glaze blobs in indentations and on raised areas. The white parts are where the kiln wash pulled off the shelf. No damage to anything, but it’s unsightly. Note: the red color is underglaze that somehow got onto the back of the tile. It does not adhere to shelves, and though I usually clean the backs of tiles to remove underglaze, I must have missed this one. It just looks messy, but is not a problem.
The third tile shows glaze blobs in the indentations but nothing on the raised areas, so there was no kiln wash adhered to the back. It’s imperfect but acceptable.
Remember that if these tiles were intended to be adhered to a wall, none of this would matter. The tiles could be set and do just fine. It’s when you want to sell the tiles as an item of decor that the back starts to matter. People look at both sides when they buy, in those situations.
Now… Time to see the tiles.
Note: I am not a good art photographer and my aim was to make photos that do a decent job of portraying the tile, but I am not great with reflections and so on. I did my best, and I think you can see enough to get an idea.
If you’ve got any questions about a specific tile, as to how I achieved the effects you see, just ask a question in the comments!
Here are the bird tiles, as individuals:
and a group shot:
Here are the head tiles as individuals:
and a group shot:
Well, that’s it. Soon I will be taking them around with me to leave out in the world. If you follow my personal blog (Sometimes You Get So Confused), where I post my art drop-offs, you may see where they end up.
Thanks for going along with me in this tile journey.