Updated: Oct 5
10th October 2021
Twice as many runners this year. So twice as many medals.
The chicken Run studio one woman band was up for the challenge!
Wanting to prepare well in advance Andy Goodwin (organiser) came to me
with a new medal design. Without a year date, with Roman numeral ll instead.
This made sense - a global pandemic meant it maybe wasn't going to run in 2020.
Nick Holmans planned the new medallion stamps. Using his 3D printer he printed out a Tree for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd placement medals and made the participants’ medals with ll rather than a year date.
"The marathon of a process to make the medals began. But it was now lockdown and so there was time. Just me on my own as I couldn't invite in help."
Rolling out the clay was easy I had bought a large hand rolling machine for the 2019 run.
Dusting the clay with flour meant that it wouldn't stick to the stamps - and any residual flour would burn off in the firing.
Then using the stamps I impressed in the clay as well as a separate ll and 1st 2nd and 3rd on the winners' medals.
Next placing a cutting ring to make the individual medal.
Then making the hole through the clay for the string.
and placing The Chicken Run Studio maker's mark on the back.
Drying each medal completely (the airing cupboard overnight)
wiping off any access bits and discarding any faulty medals ( clay to be reused)
once dry stacking them in the kiln ready for firing.
Bisque firing @1000C for 24 hours ( includes cooling down time)
950 small medals and 40 large medals took 4 bisque firings.
Glazing came next. Painting in the Siemens and Healthineers ( sponsors) colours with a fine paintbrush on each and wiping between colour applications.
Last check as they are placed in the kiln for the final glaze firing ensuring they are kept apart so no glaze transfers. (or the medals might fuse or end up with colour where it shouldn't be)
Firing to 1235C for 24 hours and a little more to cool down. At least 10 firings that were predominantly medals.
Next job threading the neck loops. (one part I didn't do).
Each runner will receive an individually made medal. Running Wytham Woods is a tough challenge. The medal will be well earned.
Meet me in person at the event .
I will have a gazebo showing how the medals are made and will have some of my ceramics on display.