On Friday, after I finished the five-part slip casting mould, I made a two-part press mould of the 10% small plaster model of the peat slice. I am planning to press mould raw clay blocks for stacking, incorporating additions from on site, like leaves etc that were on the raw slices I was experimenting with a couple of weeks ago.

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Photo Affleck, 11/10/2018 Glasgow Ceramic Studio. Peat on the left raw clay on the right that was worked on site:

carried, sliced and laid out in the peat bog (Lenzie Moss) to dry over night. I felt that the torn edges and the inclusions gave a better feel of the peat, which is weathered and full of organic material. The proportions of the slices felt wrong, which is why I made the plaster models and the moulds to press mould and slip cast.

I may also press mould some peat slices for raku or smoke firing as they may be more durable than the stoneware slipcast slices.

I made the mistake of pouring the second part of the press mould when I was getting tired, around 6.30pm, to save me coming in the next day (Saturday). The result was I calculated the volume wrongly, had to add more plaster on top, and also didn’t make the clay shoring cottles strong enough and I flooded the plaster through the mould to the model. I probably poured it a minute too early, so the plaster wasn’t thick enough, which helped it flood.

The result was I spent till 10.30pm cleaning up the mould enough that I could get it opened and into the drying cupboard. There’s no photos of the finished mould as I was exhausted as I’d not eaten lunch, lesson learned. Its difficult when I only have till 3pm every day, so when I have a day where I can work on its hard to stop when I’m too tired to work properly. But I’ve learned a few times that I ruin everything when I’ve not stopped for a break or food.  I need to check the mould on Monday but I think it is functional, despite being dug out in a frenzy with a knife by the end of the night, as the calm sanding with the surform and scraper for 4 hours wasn’t working. I think the plaster model was pretty damaged.

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