studio happenings

Spring – finally! ?

 Spring.  We wait and wait all winter in hope that spring will come sooner than later.  Well for here in the North East and much of the country, spring is having a difficult time arriving.

 Many of us tend to look into our seed and flower catalogs (or on line) with high hopes.  I to, wonder what the possibilities will be.  New plantings, replacement plants, mulch , a of coarse weeds.

  Over the winter I created some interesting pinch pots.  I loved them, but what can they be used for?  During a recent trip to my local garden center I spied some air plants being displayed in assorted containers, and I thought….of coarse.  Perfect! 

Pinch Pots.
Pinch Pots.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pinch Pots with Air Plants
Pinch Pots with Air Plants

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Single Plant and Pot
Single Plant and Pot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top view of Air Plant and Pinch Pot
Top view of Air Plant and Pinch Pot

 

Winter work

I am no fan of winter,  I find it a distracting time and usually don’t get much studio work done.  This year I am off to a better start than usual, thankfully.  Below are some photos of  work drying……Actually the truth is, I like my pottery more before its fired and glazed.  There is something about the clay itself that I love.

001

 

002

 

003

Tippy pots

I enjoy what I do, working with clay, working for myself….it allows freedom, so they say.  I think it requires an incredible amount of planning.  Planning for shows, creating new work, supplying galleries.  Making sure they are all set for the holiday season and the gardening season.  My brain feels a bit frazzled now and then.   But its all okay, I love it.

Almost every firing has a surprise or two.  Not always a good surprise, but over the years one just accepts the fact that the ugly stuff goes to the trash.  Now and again, a wonderful surprise happens when testing glazes and I cant believe how great something came out.

Sometimes something tips over in the firing.  I use stilts under some of my items so that it can be glazed on the bottom of the piece as well. (We usually dont glaze the bottom of pots, bowls and mugs, because they stick to the kiln shelf) (Actually stick is an understatement….become part of the kiln self is more acurate).  Recently while firing some bird feeders, one of the stilts failed and now we have two feeders forever stuck to eachother.  Not sure if these two will hit the trash barrel, or I might just put them in a tree and fill them with seed.  The birds and chipmunks dont care….the people care more about what the feeder looks like 🙂

I am completely out of clay, but most galleries are stocked for the upcoming sales season.  Hopefully next week new clay will arrive and I can start making some small porcelain bowls that have become quite popular.  At this time only two galleries carry them, and well, my studio also has them…..please keep me in mind this fall/winter when your doing your holiday shopping.

bird feedersstuck together

 

Funny things happen

Many times (more often than we wish) odd surprises occur during a firing.

Sometimes a test glaze comes out really great, sometimes a test glaze that expect to be great turns out horrid.

Sometimes a test glaze comes out great, but the record keeping has much to be desired, so one really doesnt know how to recreate that wicked cool glaze.

Sometimes bad things happen, but in the name of jinx, I wont say a word.

Sometimes equipment gets old and you know it needs replacing but its going to cost money or you havent just sat down and ordered what you need – in time.

Recently I would walk by my box of kiln stilts (little three legged supports for pots that have glaze on the bottom), and I would say, hmmmmm, they are looking pretty lousy, I really should order more… Stilts tend to weaken over time, due to the heat of the kiln and weight of the pots.

 

stilt malfunction

We now have a birdfeeder duplex!  Stuck together until the end of time, OR a hammer gets close enough.  🙂

Its okay, stuff like this happens, and I am greatful for how infrequent.

I ordered more stilts yesterday!