I learned a little bit about ceramic decals in the surface class I took this past summer at the Goshen Clay Artist’s Guild. During the class I spent most of my time working with the crystalline glazes and never got a chance to try the decals.
So I applied some of the decals to some little cups that I had lying around and threw them in one of the bisque firings. I wasn’t expecting great results because I didn’t have any pieces with “decal friendly” glaze. The cup with the light blue glaze turned out alright though.
There were also some unexpected changes to the glazes of the other two pieces in the bisque fire. The saturated brown glaze turned almost red and the pam’s blue glaze changed to a lighter green/turquoise. Interesting.
I’ve still got the rest of the decal sheet with about 6 or 8 decals so maybe I’ll try some more when I have some better test subjects.
Decals can be applied to pieces that have already been glazed and glaze fired. Then they are re-fired at a lower temperature to melt the decal onto the finished piece. You can see my notes about decals.
Thanks to Justin Rothshank for introducing ceramic decals during our summer class! Check out his decal resources here. Lots of good stuff! Also, if you want to see some of his work in person (and a bunch of other potters as well) you can check out the Michiana Pottery Tour next Saturday, September 29th.