Alternative Firing Workshop

A landing page for all you need to know about your upcoming workshop with Lacie T Warden!

For students beginning the 6-week Intro to Alt Firing Workshop, we will spend the first 2 weeks making pots together and the remaining 4 firing them.

What to Make...

Did you know...? You do not have to use Raku Clay to have success in this workshop!

  • All pots made for the workshop must be bisque-fired ahead of time.

  • Pieces should be no larger than 12" w x 18" tall to fit into our kiln.

  • *Please take into consideration how pieces can be grabbed with tongs to be pulled from kiln. *

  • Naked Raku and Horsehair work best on smooth surfaces and are exceptionally nice on pottery that has been finished with terra sigilata before bisque. Lighter clay bodies are best.

  • Items for Glazed Raku can be intricate or simple. You can arrive up to one hour early to prep and glaze your pieces. Any clay body works well so long as your walls are even throughout (to survive the thermal shock).

  • Obvara is a technique that loves textured and smooth items alike, however it will be most successful on unburnished surfaces. Shaping these pieces to be easy to grab with tongs and dunk into liquid is crucial. Lighter clay bodies recommended.

  • Barrel Firing works best with lighter clay bodies for the most vibrant color results. You can arrive up to one hour early to prep and wrap up your foil saggars. Please be aware that tiny items are easily lost amongst the embers in the barrel.

What to Expect...

The only guarantee I have for any of the alternative firing methods we will explore is that results are unpredictable and you will have fun! Follow the links below to learn more about our firing techniques:

What to Bring...

Beyond a sense of adventure, here are some guidelines on what to bring to a one-day firing workshop:

  • 4-6 pieces of bisqued pottery

  • Mask or bandana to cover your face if sensitive to smoke/smells

  • Combustibles (shredded paper, magazines, straw, scraps of wood/lawn litter, etc)

  • Any perishable items for the Saggar Barrel Firing (scroll down for ideas)

  • Items like feathers, plants and flowers, colorful wrapping paper, pet hair, etc for Horsehair and Barrel

Saggar Ingredients

A variety of ingredients for your Barrel pieces will be available to use. All anticipated color results below, as well as their intensity, depend on the application as well as temperature/location in relation to flame. Feel free to bring your own perishable items to try!

  • Ferric Chloride = Yellows, oranges and reds

  • Cobalt Carbonate = Blues

  • Seaweed = browns, rust, warm yellows

  • Banana Peels = purples, brown-reds, greens, gray

  • Copper (wire/mesh) = black, red, blue, green

  • Steel Wool = blues, grays, pinks

  • Copper Carbonate/Sulfate = green, black, reds

  • Table Salt = orange, yellows

  • Sea Salt = salmon, orange, yellow, peach

  • Coffee Grounds = browns, greens, blues

  • Leaves, flowers, grasses = browns, greens, white

  • Driftwood = blue-grays, gray-blacks, aqua shades

  • Bacon/Bacon Grease = browns, greens