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nceca glaze panel

updated sat 24 mar 07


stephani stephenson on fri 23 mar 07

for those who missed the Friday Glaze panel at NCECA.
I really enjoyed TIna Gebhart's presentation.
she manages to translate some terms with humor and
without dumbing down the presentation.

a couple of the terms i really enjoyed was her
definition of 'mole'.
the way my mind works everytime someone says 'mole' in
a glaze discussion, i immediately picture a small
furry creature, and by the time i get the small furry
creature to get out of the way , the discussion has
moved on.... it' s a word i know but i sort of get
hazy on, especially if i am not in the midst of glaze

so Tina defined 'mole' as 'a potter's dozen'... which
is humorous in a way because a mole is a whole bunch
of atoms, a huge number, but more importantly it is a
grouping, according to Tina, thus substitute ' a
Potter's dozen"

also the way she showed the difference between
diferent types of colorants...oxides such as copper
and iron, which dissolve in the
melt are 'colored jello' (picture a totally
translucent cube of green lime jello.)

stains, spinels, are not dissolved in the melt , and
refract light differently, so picture them as 'clear
jello with fruit" (the fruit being particles of the
stain which are usually compounds of oxides and
accompanying elements such as AL, Si, Zr etc....)
then she illustrated encapsulated stains in the melt
as "clear jello with candy coated fruit"
she actually had models of these 3 with her...

anyway, i appreciate it because , i know the
difference from having handled all three and knew
this intuitively ... but dang if i had an easy way to
explain the difference

also i like her review of blending , and her 3-D way
of illustrating it.

I though Dave did a brilliant job of giving us a
peek into the dynamics of how glazes melt . and now i
understand why bubbles matter and where they come
from. a little bit!

it matters because it gives us an image, it gives us a
handle on how we think about these things, which helps
us when we open up our kilns and scratch our heads and
wonder how something happened , whether that something
is something we want to avoid OR repeat!

Stephani Stephenson

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