Blogs » Blizzard at Sunset, notes on its making.

Blizzard at Sunset, notes on its making.

  • Blizzard at Sunset (Nov 2000) Intention: The colours and effects which can appear with low temperature firings have impressed me; they cannot be purchased by the ounce. I wished to further explore these effects and become more familiar with wet process enamel. I took a familiar Buddhist symbol, the stupa, and (an ancient repository for cremated remains) as a basic strong form. 1. Copper Panel 15.2 x 10.2 cm. 2. Along one of the longer sides, painted one half of vertical section of a stupa using W.G.Ball’s lead-free liquid white 10099 with a cheap brush, applied in a variable manner for texture. Left bulk of the panel bare copper. 3. Dried and fired at 750 C. until just fused. This yielded an even fire-scale over the non-enamelled surface. 4. Made a mixture of 20% liquid white and 80% Ball’s liquid flux 10098. 5. Painted mixture overall, rotated and allowed surplus to flow around the edges of the panel, then agitated so that the liquid at the centre took up the form of clouds. Rotated again to reinforce the edge effects. 6. Dried and fired at 780 C. 7. Counter enamelled and fired at 780 C. 8. A range of reds and magentas were revealed which I found very attractive and did not wish to lose by further experimentation, so at this point I decided that the piece was complete. The panel works well in its original stupa form but I think is better when rotated 90 degrees when it takes the form of a blizzard scene at sunset. In this, I see the cliff edges of an escarpment with a suggestion of pine trees, the snow clouds hint at the shape of a wolf’s head. It has an atmosphere, which pleases me greatly. 9. Leave edges unpolished as part of the overall appearance.