Thursday, November 26, 2009

2009-11-21 Saturday - Pottery Sale

Saturday I had a home sale and spent Friday night cleaning the garage and setting up everything. I thought it looked pretty good as my home sales go. I also put out "seconds" tables and after some pondering about prices I came up with a handy-dandy chart. I really want to find some of these pots a good home. There are various defects and mistakes, but they are still functional --even if not for their original purposes. It was a pretty slow day so I think I will try to squeeze another in before Christmas. Stay tuned.



Handy-dandy chart.

Outside, the leaves were still piling up...

... and yet, I still have tomatoes ripening on the vine.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

2009-11-15 Sunday - Clay Olympics

Sunday was the clay olympics at the Clay Matters meeting. The clay olympics consists of various individual and team timed events including throwing the tallest cylinder, throwing the most pots, throwing blindfolded, handbuilding the tallest pot, etc. Everyone had a great time with lots of laughs and talented throwing.

The tallest cylinder competition.

The blindfolded throwing event.

Handbuilding the tallest pot --one method.

Another method.

Which turned out to be the winning method.

More pictures here.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

2009-11-18 Wednesday - Sales on Saturday

'Tis the season for pottery shows and sales. This weekend you can catch Julie Wiggins (and Team Celadon) at The Piedmont Craftsmen's 46th Fair on Saturday and Sunday, November 21, and 22 in booth J-8.

Oh, and by the way, I am having a home sale on Saturday, November 21, 9 am to 4 pm. Come by if you get the chance.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

2009-11-14 Saturday - Unloading the kiln

Once we got back from Shelby, we unloaded the kiln. There were a few "huhs?", but it was a good firing overall.

First opening.

My batch.

My (really) blue crackle pot.

A casserole.

A little pot looking for a home.

Toothbrush holder for a friend.

My tallest pot to date.

2009-11-14 Saturday - Carolina Pottery Festival

My plan on Saturday was to unload the gas kiln and then head out to the Carolina Pottery Festival. When I got to Clayworks the gas kiln was at 386 F and it needed to be under 200 F before we cracked the door. We removed the peeps and the temperature began dropping so S-L-O-W-L-Y that Ralph suggested we go to the festival first and then come back to unload later. (Good idea, Ralph!) As we were preparing to leave, Kim arrived and we convinced her to join us. (It wasn't a tough sell. :8^)

We had a great time seeing all the amazing work and visiting with all our friends. On the way back we stopped at the famous Red Bridges BBQ (locally known as "The Lodge") where Ralph treated us to lunch. Once sated we high-tailed it back to Charlotte to unload that kiln.

Andy Smith
who assured us he was working
on a new saggar workshop!

(Kim, Ralph, and Gina)

2009-11-11 Wednesday - Kiln Loading

On Wednesday night we loaded the big gas kiln. It went pretty smoothly and it was raining when we lit it, which is always a good thing for the shinos. After we loaded it we looked at some of Greg's pots from the previous firing. They were commissioned awards and they came through the fire great. His colors and runs are almost always phenomenal.

Loaded and ready to be lit.

Chuck and Greg discussing Greg's glazing.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

2009-11-05 Thursday - (Actually Friday morning)

As I mentioned, I stayed WAY too late on Thursday night throwing pots and yakking with Kim. When I was finally leaving on Friday morning I noticed some interesting lights outside the studio.

Flying saucer?
No, tower crane.

Aliens invading?

Nope, just the back parking lot lights.
(Without moving the camera.)

Friday, November 13, 2009

2009-11-13 Friday - Carolina Pottery Festival

Tomorrow (Saturday, 11/14/2009) is the date for the Carolina Pottery Festival. Lots of talented artists will be there so if you get a chance, head out to the Cleveland County Fairgrounds in Shelby. Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm.

2009-11-05 Thursday - One pot, two pots, new pots, glazed pots

I was getting very frustrated trying to make large, two piece pots. I crashed six, I think, in a week. I was getting more and more frustrated which made me more nervous, which made me crash more pots. Not a good place to be, so I decided to throw some smaller pots and give it a rest for a while. I started turning out these little orangestone pots at a pretty good clip and was having fun with them while yakking with Kim. Very relaxing. Thanks, Kim.

We also unloaded a kiln and a few of my pieces were in there. It was a pleasant surprise since I wasn't there for the loading. I like the luster I got on the bottles, but the shino was applied too thinly on the mug. I like the mug shape and will probably be making more of those in the future.

The explanation of the (please excuse the expression), "over the top" handle on one of the bottles comes from something Greg said to me at the Circle of Eight sale. We agreed that if I put a small loop handle on it, it would look silly. To put a handle on the pot that looked right meant "breaking out of the box". When looking at the bottle without the handle, imagine a box by drawing a line up the side of it from the table, across the top, and down the other side (see the bottom picture). There's always something to learn.

Lots of small pots.

Pots fresh from the kiln.

Without the flash to show the luster better.

Breaking out of the box.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

2009-11-11 Wednesday - New Clayworks Website!

Make sure you head over to the all new Clayworks website! It's been totally re-done and you'll love how it looks and how easy it is to navigate. (While you're there, feel free to sign up for a class or donate some money.)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

2009-11-04 Wednesday - Clayworks

I am not what you'd call a master wedger...

or even a novice wedger...

or even someone who can wedge.

For the folks who don't think about clay every 22 and a half seconds, wedging is allegedly what is done to the clay to take the air out before working with it. I have never mastered it or even come close. My best clay is straight out of the bag after smacking it on the floor several times. Once I use some clay and (attempt to) re-wedge it, the bubbles make me miserable. One day I will really have to learn how to consistently wedge the air out of my clay.

Pictured here is a (choke, cough) wonderful wedging example I achieved the other night. I was in a hurry and was re-wedging about ten pounds of clay while having a conversation. For some reason I suddenly decided to check the consistency of the clay. Not only did I leave an air bubble, but it looks like I had a dowel in the clay while I was wedging it. Someday I will achieve wedge-vana...

Looks sort of like a geode.

Greg stayed after class to finish some pieces.
(and laugh at my wedging!)

Monday, November 9, 2009

2009-10-31 - Saturday - Duh, It Was Halloween...

These pictures were taken on October 11, and I was going to save them for Halloween. Well, Halloween came and went and I forgot all about it. (The fifties are rough!) Please revisit Halloween 2009 for a moment with me...

The crypt is as quiet as death (huh?), and you hear a soft scraping sound of stone on stone. Turning, you see the mummy's fingers pushing the lid of the sarcophagus to one side. You freeze, wondering what to do, and then...

Your realize you are in the clay studio and it's not scary at all.

I thought these clay remnants looked a lot like mummy's fingers so I took some photos (go figure!).

The mummy's fingers!

The larger picture.

The back of the hand.

Oh yeah, and I started my teapot on that day...