I love the entire process of creating something beautiful to use from a lump of clay; and I take full responsibility for the whole making process from preparing the clay, glaze application, selecting the method of firing as well as the final position each piece takes in the kiln. It is for this reason that I enjoy kiln building projects as I find the bond between making, kiln building and the process of firing fascinating. This direct involvement often becomes an overpowering catalyst in my design process, and to have control of both making and firing is an absolute must for me as a potter.
I am as passionate about the way in which my work is fired as I am about making it. I love being in control of the firing process as well as wanting to yield truly individual results, and it is for this reason that I wood fire my work.
In 2007 I was given the opportunity to build a wood kiln at Broadwood Hall in Allendale, Northumberland. The kiln was built to a Joe Finch Fast Fire Kiln design which is an adaption of the Olsen Classic kiln design. The kiln was built over the Summer of 2007; it has approximately 50 cubic feet of packing space and is fired over a 10-12 hour period reaching temperature at cone ten or 1300 degrees, and is then cooled slowly over 36 hours. Each piece that comes out of the kiln has subtle differences of flashing, light ash deposits and glaze, which are all completely dependent on where they have been placed in the kiln and how the flame has passed by and between the work.
The kiln firing is a great social event and people are welcome to come and watch part or all of a firing by appointment.