Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Raku Rodeo was an experience of a lifetime

Reduction Firing
Three days of Raku bliss under the Arizona sun ! I am finally back home, but my head is still in Phoenix, at the friendly Desert Dragon studio managed by Mishy and Kim. I learned so much, my head is swirling with ideas. I am slowly distilling Jim's, Steve's and Eduardo's lessons and looking at ways to include them in my work.
I have to say I was a good student. I spent those three days completely out of my comfort zone. I ignored the Raku glazes to experiment with stannous chloride fuming (Kosai), ferric chloride treatments, and commercial low-fire and medium-fire glazes in Raku firings. It was exhilarating ! No fear, complete freedom of expression. Jim's demos were also a true eye-opener. How he is literally using clay as a canvas, free-styling his compositions yet controlling his medium from throwing to post firing alterations. He truly inspired me to try out brushwork and slip decorations with minimum glazing.
Steve Branfman, Eduardo Lazo, and Jim Romberg are an amazing trio. Don't pass up on a chance to attend one of their workshops, it is an experience of a lifetime. Guaranteed ! Ask Mishy at Desert Dragon Studio when's the next one !
I have tons of pictures and almost an hour of videos. Going through everything will take time. I also need to take some good shots of my wares so I can share the end results with you. Expect multiple posts as I revisit the long week-end with my digital memories. For now I will end with pictures of the Raku masters in action.

The masters at work

Jim pulling his plate

Steve pulling his teabowl

Steve trimming his trademark bottle

Jim doing some heavy duty altering

Eduardo in his Zen zone

Eduardo ready for "fuming"

Mishy entertaining the crowd

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