The Process, Continued - Glazing
The glaze can be applied in many ways. It can be brushed on, sprayed on, poured on, or the pot can be dipped into the glaze. Some pots will be glazed using a combination of the above methods. More than one glaze may be used on the same pot. Most studios create test tiles that show how the pot will look when a glaze or a combination of glazes are used.
How thickly the glaze is applied, the tendencies of a glaze to run or crawl (clump up into sometimes very interesting patterns), and the method used to apply the glaze are all variables that can lead to a very different final result.
My work is generally too large to dip, and pouring and brushing yield uneven results, so most of the time I use the pouring technique for the interior of vase and bottle forms, and spray glazes onto the exteriors of my work. The spraying is done in a "spray booth" with a spray gun powered by an air compressor. The spray booth has a fan at the back that draws the excess glaze through catch screens. This keeps the glaze out of the air and out of the potter's lungs.
Once you get used to spraying, you can lay down a very precise amount of glaze to achieve exactly the effect desired.