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Amaco - an Unsung Hero: Article or Project

Many of you are unaware of a company who provides such incredible products for the ceramics industry and is yet hardly known. Potters are familiar, but those in the cast ceramics part of the "craft" have little or no knowledge of the range and quality of what Amaco has to offer them. No, I don't work for Amaco and I too did little with the products they offered, but as my familiarity and exposure grew, I am compelled to encourage others to reach out and look at incorporating these products as they express their creativity in the world of ceramics art.

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Amaco has been providing products for almost 100 years and is well known among potters since many of the products they provide have been with potters in mind. However, with the changes in the industry, such as introduction of Raku with cast ceramics, the cross over between the two fields has narrowed considerably. In addition to high fire products, Amaco has a wide range of cross-over and low fire glazes available.

Take one specific product as example, the Semi-Moist Underglaze Decorating Colors. These colors contain an unusually high content of color pigment which is an added benefit when striving for a water color effect on your project. Not a large selection of color pallet, but can be mixed to create additional colors. They can be used for fine detail or transparent coverage on greenware before traditional glazing. They are also excellent for application over polished underglazes as well as raw greenware; however to be food safe, they will need to be re-fired with a food safe glaze over them.

I could write pages on all of their products, but instead, encourage each of you to visit their site and explore what they offer and then try out some of their products. Do some exploration and have fun creating. With a whole new generation of lovers of cast ceramics who are not committed to any specific brand of product, the field is wide open for exploration. The problem, however is availability.

For the slip-cast ceramist, it is not easy to find their products at a local level. In the current economy, most ceramic suppliers are not able to incorporate an additional line of products, so it may take some research, and a bit of additional expense to acquire them, but they are well-worth the investment. Many of the products are readily available from Potter's Supply sources. Amaco has such a large line, not many suppliers carry it all; but may be willing to order for you. If not, it is well worth the investment to have it shipped. One warning: Most of their products come in pints rather than the small containers most familiar and commonly available to those who work with slip-cast ceramics, so check the color charts, ask questions from the suppliers and check with others who use the product before you commit to a large investment.

Amaco has a few active Facebook pages, so resources and knowledgeable expertise are available On Facebook, check out the following: Low Fire Glaze Exchange, AMACO - American Art Clay Company, or AMACO Cone 5/6 Exchange. There are also many videos available on Youtube.com and of course you can visit their website www.amaco.com or give them a call 800.374.1600

I'm in no way suggesting to give up using other products such as Duncan, Mayco, Doc Holliday, etc., but rather introducing an additional resource so the artist within can find additional ways to express their creativity.

 

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Amaco - an Unsung Hero

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