When you take your crackle glaze out of the kiln using either rubber gloves or a coffee filter to handle the piece. If you touch with your hands, the oils from your body can seal the cracks and then you will not be able to put color in the cracks to enhance and show off the crackle. You can use acrylic stains, India inks and sharpie markers to create colored cracks.
There are 30 colors called “Glaze Elements” by Colors for Earth. The Glaze Elements are vivid, NON TOXIC glazes applied to bisque. These non-moving glazes provide smooth coverage and can be applied side-by-side for controlled application.
With Soft Fan Glaze Brush apply 3 coats to bisque of most of the glazes, matt glazes are 3-4 coats unless otherwise specified on the label, allowing to dry between coats. Whether you are looking for a semi-transparent, gloss, matt or a designer contemporary glaze you will find what you need in the Glaze Elements line. Look for specific firing directions on product labels.
What is a coat of glaze? This really varies ceramist by ceramist. We recommend using a fully loaded natural hair fan brush for application. Drying between coats makes a difference too. If you are cheating a bit and not letting the glaze crust between coats, your 3 coats could be the equivalent of 2 1/2 coats. We all do this sometimes when we are in a hurry, but beware that the results will differ when you don’t follow the rules exactly no matter what opaque glazes you use. BUT If you use a synthetic (man-made) hair glaze brush as your preference for glazing you will need to consider applying 4 coats to achieve the same coverage as a natural hair-brush.
Firing: The perfect firing range for the Glaze Elements is 05/06. Cone 05 will give you better results. The term 05/06 means a cone 05 in the sitter if your kiln is a cone sitter model equals a cone 06 on the shelf. (Information from The Orton Cone Foundation).
But if you are using cone 06, be sure to put that 20-minute hold at the end of the firing cycle. If you do not have a current cone chart, download one from the Orton web site. The temperatures on the charts have changed in the past 10 years, because of a change in the clay body of the cones. By downloading a current firing chart, you will make sure you are firing to temperature.
Orton also makes ‘05 1/2’ cones that can be used in a manual kiln sitter to achieve a witness Cone 06 with a 20-minute hold on the shelf. If the cone 05 is too hot then the 05 1/2 may be the answer.
Available in 4oz., Pints, and Gallons.