Saturday, November 25, 2017

2017-11-02 - Thursday - Monsters and Bob Trotman

Thursday I went to Charlotte Medical Clinic about my sinuses hurting and causing my teeth to hurt. This has been ongoing since before Labor Day, so I thought I would see if there was anything to be done about it. When I got to the front desk I could see these signs on a door behind the counter, which I thought were pretty cute.

Thursday night Ju-Ian and I went to hear Bob Trotman talk and see his exhibit downtown. When we got there we found our friend Vince there also. Selfie time.

Bob gave a good talk and his work is incredible. He works in wood, resin, clay, and fiberglass.


Friday, November 24, 2017

2017-10-31 - Tuesday - Dickerson, MD

Tuesday we spent the day with Meredith, mostly shopping.

She showed us a wingless plane that someone has on their front lawn and told us it was the guy's man cave. Interesting...

While Karen and Meredith were shopping at Kohl's I found this in the men's section. Everyone needs a Pacman suit --with matching tie.

The ride back to Meredith's apartment was beautiful at sunset.

The view off Meredith's second-story back porch.


2017-10-30 - Monday - Mugs and Maryland

Monday I started out drinking tea from a Shane Mickey mug. Not a bad way to start the day.

After that we headed to Frederick, MD to see Meredith since Tuesday is her day off. We stayed at a Courtyard by Marriott motel. I was struck by the retro decor and the odd layout of the room.

That's the door to the hallway in the left distance.

Convertible couch.

Even the hallway colors are retro.


Thursday, November 23, 2017

2017-10-29 - Sunday - Garage

Sunday I started cleaning out the garage so I could start using the back room again and get the front ready for my holiday sale. Things had gotten out of control for a while and I finally made it a point to do something about it. I'm sorry I didn't take any "before" photos.

Looking left to the kiln.

Looking right to the bins of pots.

To make room I had to jettison some things. One of them was a kick wheel my friend Irene gave me 18 years ago when we moved in. I never got around to using it. Now I wear Crocs due to vein problems in my legs/feet so a kick wheel would not work out too well for me.

I sent word out to our guild and 3 people contacted me immediately. It went to a good home.


Now I just have to deal with this stuff...


Monday, November 20, 2017

2017-10-28 - Saturday - Kiln unload

Saturday we unloaded the kiln and decided it was a good firing. Nice reduction, good color, abundant carbon build-up. All we could ask for in an atmospheric firing.

My work.

After the unload, it was back to making new work to prepare for the next firing.


Sunday, November 19, 2017

2017-10-26 - Thursday - Firing kiln

Thursday we fired the gas kiln. It was kept in reduction all day starting at cone 012 (~1582F), all the way up to cone 10 (~2345F). At the very end of the firing we do a "final soak" when we put the kiln into heavy reduction by starving it of oxygen. When that happens a beautiful green flame (copper) goes all the way up the flue and out the top to access oxygen.

After the final soak we shut it down and wait for it to cool for two days before opening it.

I've said it before: People who don't fire kilns only get one Christmas per year.


Saturday, November 18, 2017

2017-10-25 - Wednesday - Scummy

While the glazed pots sat on the shelf overnight the soluble salts surfaced in the shino glaze in what we call "scumming up". The salt crystals trap the carbon during the reduction firing making the shinos work, so scumming up is a good thing.

We finished loading the kiln and started candling it for tomorrow's firing. When I left it was up to 573 F with a long way to go.


2017-10-24 - Tuesday - Glazing with friends

Tuesday I was glazing a bunch of pots and Ju-Ian stopped by to say hello on her way out. She asked me about my new mini tripod which is also a selfie stick. So...

After she left I started my glazing marathon. Sometimes I think I'm getting too old for this. Many hours standing on the concrete leaves all my joints sore the next day. Glazing is truly a marathon: I'm on my feet the whole time and each pot gets handled multiple times for several layers of application. Someday I will have to do a time-lapse of the process.


Friday, November 17, 2017

2017-10-22 - Sunday - Greenville, SC

Sunday we went to Greenville, SC to visit Stephanie and Brett. While there we went to Falls Park on the Reedy. It's a beautiful park with a lot going on, not least of which is the Liberty Bridge.

Karen in front of the Medusa Tree.

The falls.

Stephanie, Brett, and Tomato.

The Liberty Bridge.


2017-10-19 - Thursday - Raku

Thursday night is raku class night at Clayworks and when I arrived I saw Greg had the mobile stairs pulled up to the kiln so everyone could see inside. Good idea.

Here's a short video showing the lazy flame inside the kiln.


Thursday, November 16, 2017

2017-10-18 - Wednesday - Construction/destruction, orchids, and butter dishes

Wednesday I was getting gas at BJ's Wholesale Club and noticed that someone had removed all the trees across the street. There used to be a thick grove of trees where the open area is now. I remember standing at the gas pump during a prior summer and thinking that the noise from the cicadas in that grove was deafening but wonderful. Now all those cicadas, and all the things that fed and ate the cicadas were gone.

I miss those trees.

The cranefly orchids have sent up their nourishing leaves for the fall/winter. I'm pleased that these rescued native plants are thriving here in our yard.

Later I went to Clayworks and worked on some more butter dishes.


2017-10-17 - Tuesday - Tea bowls

Tuesday I trimmed some of my tea bowls. I really enjoy making them and each series is different then the previous ones. I started out years ago with very stiff, formal-looking tea bowls. I delineated each part: the rim, the hip, the foot, etc., but they had no life in them. Since then I've played with shape and surface in multiple ways and they're getting looser with each run.

Stay tuned. Let's see where these go.


Monday, November 13, 2017

2017-10-14 - Saturday - CCM Pottery Festival

Saturday was the Carolina Clay Matters Fall Pottery Festival. During the day I took some time to try out some my phones photo settings.

"Phil", regular.

"Phil" with a blurred background.

"Charles", regular.

"Charles" with a blurred background.


Saturday, November 11, 2017

Friday, November 10, 2017

2017-10-12 - Thursday - Jars

After discussing the lids with Kira, I trimmed them down substantially. I need to work on my jar forms a bit more.


Thursday, November 9, 2017

2017-10-11 - Wednesday - Kilns and pots

I had a bit of a set back on Wednesday when I opened the bisque kiln and saw the destruction inside it.

Note to self: Always preheat.

I lost five out of seven butter dish lids. I was pleased with them because they felt substantial, like crockery and that's what did them in. Well, that and the fact that I didn't use the preheat function.

Live and learn...

I glazed the surviving pots way into the wee hours of the morning.

And loaded the glaze kiln.

...and I was off to the races again.


Sunday, November 5, 2017

2017-10-08 - Sunday - Pots

Sunday I made some lids for the jars, cut feet into the bottoms, and added some texture to one of them.

I played with some of the camera options on my new phone. This time: focus.

When I got home I snapped some photos of the face mugs that came out of the kiln. I like them.