This week I had to do a bunch of studio maintenance; cleaning, organizing, and other non-creative projects. Sometimes I wish I had an assistant to do such things for me! Ha! One thing I did was make cone packs with some leftover clay. Cone packs are used to test the temperature of the kiln when it is firing. If the kiln fires to the correct cone (temperature), or lower or higher, I will be able to find out by seeing the cone pack when I unload the kiln. I usually use two cone packs per firing; one on the lowest shelf and one on the highest. This way, if one of the heating elements is out I'll know about where it is.
I also loaded my kiln with some new test tiles. From an earlier post I wrote about using a new red clay body. After the bisque firing I was able to paint test some of my old glazes on the new clay. This weekend I will fire the kiln and find out how they look.
After loading my tiles I had about half of the kiln space left over, so I decided to make more tiles with the new artifacts I found on my artist date from earlier in the month. I am so excited about these new textures! I will be able to make some new images with my mosaics. Last summer I had many organic textures from the plants by the woods by our house, but this past winter we've had several freezes and many of the plants have died. That has forced me to find other sources of texture, which is actually a good thing.