Thank you for answering all the questions so carefully.
I have never used nitric acid to get rid of fire scale.
Do you dilute it?
If so what ratio do you use.
No - I use it full strength so it is VERY dangerous if you do not know how to use it !!!
Its a bit difficult to describe this just by writing instruction but there is a paragraph about it in my book.
You must wear FULL safely clothing - rubber gloves/ sturdy shoes / chemical apron / goggles and mask.
Never breath in the fumes or get any acid on your skin / eyes. Nitric will burn skin immediately and the vapors will also damage you internally. You will need IMMEDIATE medical attention. If you want me to give more details I can send more info - but this is where Health and Safely could be a problem with online teaching.......let me know
The depth of your recesses, would they allow for cloisonne wire to be used?
The recess you need for a wire is 0.3mm....if you wires are higher you need to make the recess a bit deeper.
What size wire would you have used for the beakers?
0.3mm and possibly some fine ones of 0.2mm
You used reds and yellows.
Yes, but the yellow you see on the beakers is gold foil.
I struggle with reds in particular, as they tend to burn. They only come out well on a white base.
The fact that you are able to fire them on a high temperature and still get a beautiful red?
The red you see is actually a deep pink which is more reddish - Blythes Pink A14
Another good red I use as I have a but of stock is KJE 105A however it is not made anymore.
The trick to firing reds ( and pink some oranges and yellows ) is to fire them over a layer of enamel flux.
Check Japanese colours as they can be more vibrant.
Yellow tends to be tricky, how are you able to work with it?
The yellow in the design you have seen is gold foil with a layer of flux over. If I use yellow it tends to be Soyer 30 which is consistent and a nice colour. Try firing what you have over a flux layer and see if you get an improvement. The flux I use is Blythes C1.
What inspires your designs?
It varies from project to project. I get given themes for gallery exhibitions but my own preoccupation is looking at abstractions though studying colour and light in a variety of environments.
I thank you for the list of suppliers.
If you don't mind may I ask the price of the beakers and did they sell well?
They got a very good response at the Goldsmiths fair. I made three and sold one. The price was £2300.
I hope to get future orders at some point because people seemed genuinely interested.
There are areas that seem to be stenciled in, like the yellow on the purple beaker?
The blue beaker with the three yellow,narrow rectangles.
If so how do you do this?
What would you use as the stencil, especially on a curved surface?
How do you get such clean' line from you stencils?
The yellow was gold foil and not a stencil.
If I was going to stencil I would use paper cut outs and dampen them so they would sit on the vertical
- or you could use sticky backed plastic, sift the enamel and then pull off when dry.
I might use kylre fire in the enamel if it was difficult for the enamel to stay vertical in a section.
Do you use a gas kiln?
Yes I prefer them to electric as the elements can burn out in an electric one, but the electric are good for firing too. I work in the back garden so gas is ok, it depends on your set up.
A gas kiln might not be suitable is some places.
Answer the questions when you have time, there is no urgency.
I am very grateful for all you time and effort.
I am away this week but back on the 5th of November - looking forward to chatting more when I get back.
I think for my next post to you I will send photos of doing a copper bowl. It might be best for you to try working on a copper piece before you try silver ? the techniques are a bit different but it would be a useful thing to try if you are wanting to do vessels/bowls/beakers/3d forms.
This image is of a piece with just one coat of enamel on that I did as a demonstration.
I will dig out the rest of the images and we can look at how the design builds up for next time.
The inspiration for this piece is a study of birch trees...the colours is Blythes white T6.
The green is just the colour reacting with the copper !! ........I'll send you more soon.
( the tile at the back has been screen printed )
with SASHA LEON