Testing Oxides – Experimentation

  • So I have decided that I don’t want a glaze, I have used glazes throughout this year and last year in L2 and feel it isn’t suited to my piece. I want it to look rustic and aged and I know also through previous experience that oxides will work best for this. I used my tester piece and applied the 4 different glazes that being:
  1. Black copper oxide
  2. Cobalt oxide
  3. Red Iron oxide
  4. Manganese oxide
  • To do this is quite a simple method and you use your desired oxide, I usually use a palette and put water in it as you don’t want it to apply too thick. I paint on the oxide and then use a damp sponge to get some off in areas, my main focus point being the eyes and jawline and anywhere where it shows bone definition within my figure.
  • I used all 4 and spread them on separate body parts, the head, chest, hips and legs. I begin using the black copper on the head.


  • Then the Cobalt on the chest.


  • Red Iron…
  • And lastly the Manganese…

    Now being fired this is the result:


Overall really happy with the outcome of this, I feel the Black copper and Manganese is best suited to my final piece. The effect these 2 oxides give are definitely most suited to the disorder anorexia and also suits to my feedback on the survey, that consisting of mostly white and black. I would say I mostly like the black copper though as it gives a very rustic, decrepit appearance which I have said throughout that I really wanted within my work. I want to have at least 3 finalised sculptures that could all possibly be used to display at exhibition, and by doing 3 it gives me one as a back up and I feel I will need to display 2 though I wanted one to be at focus but as I have 2 boards it will fill the space more.

When it came out of the kiln it was all perfectly in tack and I accidentally dropped the sculpture and it broke into 3, though I actually loved the appearance of it and it was a happy mistake as I then tried hanging it on this frame a teacher had and it looked beautiful, using fishing line – strong material to hang it and then dimmed the lights and messed around with lighting to see how I could incorporate shadows. I loved the idea of using lighting in order to set a mood and to provoke an emotion.


  • I feel using the light source angled shown a beautiful silhouette of the figure and also leads your from the piece to the shadow, I feel shadows will work well to engage and catch my audiences attention and also gives the appearance that it’s the disorder is haunting.
  • As for when I used the light source from below it was really effective and shown the details/definitions of the piece to great detail and also shown the contrasts and texture within the piece more. The light source brings the overall piece together and sets the mood within it, though I really love the appearance of the blue cobalt oxide but feel it’s definitely not associated to the disorder anorexia so I will not be using.

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