Raku is a type of low-firing process inspired by traditional Japanese raku firing. The style of Raku firing I used for my Raku pieces was the outdoors type. It involved placing my hand-built pottery into make shift insulated kilns or containers, then once red hot placing the pottery into tin garbage-cans with combustible materials such as newspapers. Once the materials ignite, the containers or garbage can lids are closed. This produces an intense reduction of air which affects the colours and clay bodies. The thermal shock of it produces cracking—known as crackling. The original Japanese style of Raku came from Buddhist influences including the tea ceremony but in Western society, Raku is only for decorative use. These are non-functional art pieces I created for display only.
I love using different colours of clay and the effects of the glazes. It's always a surprise with Raku or any ceramic piece for that matter, to see how the glazes will turn out. It is all part of the magic of it.