Batik, or resist-dying, is used for the blue-and-white stoneware and porcelain.
The clay is first fired at 1080 degrees C to achieve what is called the “biscuit” stage. After cooling, the design is then carefully measured and drawn on the surface of the work in pencil. Then the surfaces that need to stay white are painted with wax (called “wax resist”). At this stage the pencil-drawn divisions can be filled in in different ways each time, allowing the artist to create ever-changing patterns.
Once the resist-pattern is finished, the work is dipped in porcelain glaze made according to an in-house recipe. This glaze will not adhere to the surfaces painted with the wax resist, but only to the clear areas of the piece.
After dipping, excess, dripping glaze is cleaned off with a sponge. The edges along the glazed areas are then trimmed and more clearly defined with a small knife. Then, during the second firing, or “glaze-firing” (1260 degrees C), the glaze melts and the wax and pencil lines are completely burned off, leaving a clean design.
Sometimes, after the glaze firing, a piece requires further fine-trimming with a grinder to correct small imperfections. In this case the piece then goes back into the kiln for a third firing.