I had the privilege today of participating in a Raku firing with my pottery teacher, Chris Snedden. It was the most exciting day of my whole year! What an experience. The pottery produced by this technique are unfortunately not food and water safe, but make beautiful decorative pieces.
First we created pottery (either handbuilt or wheelthrown), bisque fired it, and then glazed them with special Raku glazes. They then went into the special Raku kiln that Chris built.
The glaze firing process is then disrupted while the pots are still glowing hot.
The glowing hot pots are carefully removed from the Raku kiln
and placed in a fireproof bin with combustible materials. We used newspaper and wood shavings which ignited instantly on contact. A lid is then placed on the bin to create an oxygen deprived environment for the pots.
The pots are then removed from the bin and allowed to cool for a long time.
Each piece is unique.
Here are a few of the pieces I made and how they turned out.