Soda, Clay and Fire
Soda glazing is a relatively new development in ceramic history, with exciting scope for research and experimentation. It's a more popular ceramic practice, particularly in the U.S., where it's widely taught in college ceramics departments and workshops, and has attracted a high number of professional practitioners. Soda glaze surfaces typically include a thin sprayed-on sheen or light flash, some supplementary fluxing of an applied glaze, and attempts to imitate the orange peel texture of salt glaze. Few people have explored the potential for serious engagement of soda vapor with clay bodies, the dynamics of atmosphere during firing and cooling, and the unique aesthetic potential of soda in its own right. In this book, Gail Nichols meets the demand for more advanced technical knowledge of materials and processes and more innovative approaches to soda glazing.What you'll find in Soda, Clay and Fire Chapter 1: Soda Gail discusses what soda is, how it's introduced into the kiln, and what the differences are between salt and soda. You'll also discover how some of the world's foremost potters use soda as part of their aesthetic. Chapter 2: Clay The second key ingredient is clay. What kind of slips, how to choose a body, and what roles clay body components play in color development are all covered. Chapter 3: Fire The third key ingredient, of course, is fire. Gail guides you through the requirements needed for kiln design and materials along with firing strategies. Chapter 4: Painting with Fire With an understanding of the three key ingredients, the experimenting begins. Unlike any book of its kind, Nichols has documented numerous experiments and provides guidance on creating your own palette. Chapter 5: Beyond Materials and Process You'll be inspired by Nichols' account of her quest for a new aesthetic. Along the way she encountered the need to work out not only forming processes, but also tackle the uncertainty of the firings and rely heavily on intuition.