I read a blog the other day that referred to Raku as the black velvet of ceramics. While this is sort of true, I happen to have a tacky side that likes black velvet painting, especially black velvet Elvis. I do have a degree in interior design and I do know what good taste is, but I also lean towards tacky from time to time. And I love raku. I love the experience of it, the instant gratification, the unknown, the risk, it's fun. And I love the results of my last firing. I did a quick batch of stars the other day, and all of them came out fantastic. For the first time I didn't break any, although I continue to make them thinner and thinner, they survived and they are really pretty. They are a mother to photograph though.
They won't last long, no matter how many I make, they sell quickly around this time of year. Raku might be the black velvet of ceramics but there are plenty of people out there that are attracted to a shiny penny. Thank goodness we all have different tastes! No these aren't the wood fired and shino surfaces I love from other potters, but they are still very pretty and appropriate for the sparkly holiday season.
Check out the three here on top. Same glaze, same firing, reduced in the same can, but all totally different. I have never had this glaze turn such a cobalt blue as the top right one. It's the only one that came out that way, and its so nice. I will never be able to duplicate this color, but that's what I love about Raku, if you have no expectations, you can't be disappointed as easily :)