I never get tired of opening the kiln door after a firing. Especially a glaze firing... apprehension, expectation, elation, disappointment... more than your average soap episode.
I still love before and after shots too.
I am having issues with changes in the characteristics of some materials I use. So... testing, testing, testing.
The chain of blame is long when it comes to pottery supplies, sometimes manufacturers chose to delete lines or alter production methods but more often than not responsibility lies with mother earth. You don't want to be arguing with her. The best thing to do is roll with the changes or try something new. When you work with raw materials it's fundamental to accept the impact of environment.
I say this, of course, to convince myself and motivate my way through it all when in reality it is really, really annoying. I aim to supply my retailers with consistent work and when things vary beyond my control it is frustrating.
I am grateful that the pottery supply stores I deal with are incredibly helpful (most especially the lovely Norma at Potters Equipment) and the manufacturers are approachable. And thankfully there is a growing awareness and understanding of the values of handmade objects with their inherent variations.
Onward and upward...