The raku process involves an ancient Japanese technique. The piece is fired in a kiln to 1900 degrees Fahrenheit. The kiln is raised with a wench, exposing the piece which is then lifted up with metal tongs and gently placed in a nest of hay. The hay ignites and the flame flashes the glazes and clay. The piece is then covered with a barrel to extinguish the fire and doused with water. The next day, the piece is washed off and it is always a surprise to see how it comes out.
The last picture shows my woodfire kiln. I have just thrown a small amount of wood into the front burner ports. The wood ignites the flames and the wood ash affects the clay and glazes. The firing takes 12 to 14 hours to reach a temperature of 2350 degrees Fahrenheit.