MICROCRYSTALLINE GLAZES: Atmospheric-Like Results for Oxidation

July 6 - July 10


MICROCRYSTALLINE GLAZES: Atmospheric-Like Results for Oxidation

Week Two (5-day): July 6 – 10, 2020. Classes run 9 am – 4 pm daily and students are welcome to stay late in their studio.

MICROCRYSTALLINE GLAZES: Atmospheric-Like Results for Oxidation

Potters love the variation that occurs naturally across the surface of salt, soda, wood, and reduction fired pots, but atmospheric kilns require extraordinary commitment and often come with high loss rates. The romance of staying up all night to tend a kiln can quickly fade when you have to go to work the next day!

By contrast, electric kilns offer firings that are stable, predictable, economical – and boring… In this class we’ll investigate microcrystalline glazes and ways that surface can be manipulated to create the richness, variety and subtlety that most of us associate with reduction and atmospheric firing. We’ll create infinitely rich and varied surfaces that will delight, inspire, sometimes confound, but ultimately expand our perception of the potential of ^6 – 8 electric firing.

Much of the richness associated with high-temperature, atmospheric firing occurs because layers are created in the glazes during the firing, and these layers react visually and tactilely to create beautiful and varied surfaces. In electric kilns we’re not able to duplicate the firing conditions that create these layers, but we can use microcrystalline glazes and layering techniques to recreate the surface and color variations of atmospheric firings. In other words… In this class, YOU will become the flame!

We’ll begin our experimentation with test tiles… Then we will glaze pottery… You will bring both to the workshop. 40-50 stand-up test tiles and 20 smallish bisque pots (no more than 6-8”, mostly vertically oriented). The pots should be fully representative of your work… just not too big.

Interspersed with the glaze experimentation, I will be demonstrating my pottery techniques. This will give me the pots I need to glaze and it will give students the opportunity to see me throw, decorate and assemble pottery.

• Learning to anticipate and control the atmospheric qualities that can potentially be achieved through spraying and layering of microcrystalline glazes.
• Are there viable alternatives to spraying?
• Firing and cooling cycles; the advantages of computerized electric kilns.
• ^10 glazes reformulated for ^6 – 8 electric firing.

  • Student Supply List: (Click HERE): Students are responsible for bringing the supplies listed.
  • Materials Fee: $75
  • Course Prerequisites: Portfolio application required
  • Course Level: Intermediate


Steven Hill is a lifelong spraying advocate, and since 2009, a cone 6 - 8 electric convert. Steven has a BFA from Kansas State University and has been a studio potter since 1975. His work is exhibited and sold in nationally juried shows and is featured in many ceramics books. He has conducted over 300 workshops throughout the United States and Canada and has written ten ceramics articles for Ceramics Monthly, Pottery Making Illustrated and Studio Potter.



Prices are listed in Canadian Dollars and include daily lunch/snacks, relevant materials fees and any applicable taxes.

Please submit your application for the MICROCRYSTALLINE GLAZES: Atmospheric-Like Results for Oxidation below

MISSA 2020: Steven Hill Portfolio Application

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