On May 9, 2014, Mrs. DeSorbo’s Pottery II and III students took a field trip to the studio of artist Vicente Garcia. Garcia is the ceramics professor at Central Connecticut State University as well as a nationally recognized ceramic and sculpture artist. Throughout the day, students participated in an Alternative Firings Workshop where they had the opportunity to finish their pieces using smoking techniques and the Raku process. Raku refers to a type of firing that was developed in Japan in the 16th century. Within in this process, the pieces are loaded into a hot kiln and heated until the glaze is molten. Then the pieces are transferred into a metal can filled with combustibles. The carbonaceous atmosphere causes a reaction, creating unique effects with the glazes. Students were also able to use slips, copper and hair to finish their work.