Leslie Parrott
CERAMIC ARTIST:

I make bowls, vases, teapots, mugs, butter dishes, jugs and other functional wares in porcelain and stoneware.They are sold via craft fairs, galleries, commissions and exhibitions. Many of the pots are thrown but some are handbuilt. The pots are often textured and impressed to induce variations of glaze thickness and hence colour.

In addition to five porcelains a range of white and red stoneware clays are used, often in blends to vary the chemical composition. This provides around 12 different clay bodies from which a choice is made to match the intended glaze.

I make my own glazes with a range of fluxes and iron, copper, chromium or titanium oxides. .From trials of around 50 glazes about 15 are used on a routine basis, including celadon, tenmoku and sang de boeuf copper red and purple, but each firing includes new tests.

The wares are reduction fired to cone 12, about 1300C, in a propane gas fuelled kiln. Firing is a critical step in the creative process. The placement of pots in the combustion gas flow and the patterns of temperature and oxygen level within the kiln cause colour variations in the glazed surface which do not occur in conventional electric kilns. The glaze is also affected by the composition of the clay and the glaze thickness.