Friday, October 30, 2009

Still away from the studio but not away from ceramics

I am in the middle of moving. I have zero time to go to the studio. But that didn't stop me from shopping for an old HP laser printer to use for decals. I found one on Craig's list and should pick it up this weekend.

It will still be two weeks or so before things calm down enough for me to get back to the studio. I am already excited to get my hands muddy again.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

An interruption

Again, I try to keep the non-pottery stuff off this blog however some times other things leak into my pottery. This is one such time.

I mentioned in a prior post that my wife and I recently bought a house. Well our closing date is rapidly approaching. As a result I am spending all my time packing and cleaning. I haven't been to the studio in almost two weeks. And it's going to get busier. After the sale closes we have to replace the fridge, build a fence to keep our filthy dogs at bay, and paint several rooms before we move in.

I probably will be out of the studio for a month. It's the longest I have been out of the studio since I started. My head is swirling with ideas but no time to execute any of them. And I know myself well enough to know that by the time I get into the studio a lot of those ideas will be gone.

One of those little things; I was looking at an old mug I made. The mug has an octopus on the side. The mug is floating blue but I put a tin/chrome red on the octopus. While I was washing it I noticed I had the two glazes overlapping on the bottom of the octopus. I had never noticed this before. It looked good. I may try this combo on some pots.

Monday, October 12, 2009


Yeah, sometimes I am my own worst enemy.

I forget that less is more. At least in my view. Especially when it comes to pottery. Keep it simple stupid.

I tested a cone 6 crystal glaze that used mason stain as a colorant. It came out pretty cool. So I mixed up a batch with orange stain. Put it on a pot with my tin/chrome red. With some strontium crystal magic. And some highlights of a crystal glaze with cobalt.

All the colors came out as I expected. Unfortunately I failed to realized before firing what an abomination those would be together. The pot looks like a teen age girl who doesn't know how to put on make up but wants to put a lot on. It's garish and ugly.

I am going to put it in our "free" pottery garden. Some fool will take. I will concentrate on limiting myself to two or three glazes per pot.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Three new pictures

Three new pictures.

Oh and I tested a new turquoise. Came out Ok but not too stunning. I am going to keep tweaking it.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Oh my

The woman who owns the studio I go to was asked to provide some work for a charity auction. She in turn asked all of the studio members for a couple pieces of work. I gave her two bowls. They were nothing special. In fact I really don't remember what they looked like.

Last night she told me that one of my bowls sold for $120.

I was shocked. I have sold a lot below $50 a piece, but nothing over $50. Now granted it was for charity which inflates the price so I am taking this with a grain of salt.

I also take heart from the fact many of my studio mates have begun using my glazes regularly. So I feel like the glaze aspect of my work is starting to mature a bit.

Friday, October 2, 2009

A lightbulb moment

Sometimes I have my best ideas in the shower. No idea why. I had an idea this morning. A simple one but one that has me excited.

I find my most satisfaction from the interaction of glazes. Nothing is better for me than seeing two or more glazes melt together to become something greater than either glaze alone. Mixing or layering glazes is fairly easy with a spray gun - which I have. And I have found some glaze combinations I really like. But something was missing, I wasn't sure what.

In the shower this morning I was thinking of the work of Fetish Ghost. I really love his stuff and will be buying some to add to my collection. He does not layer glazes, he uses paper stencils and brushes on slips. Then as the hot water poured over my head I realized that I can use Fetish Ghost's paper stencil technique to enhance the glaze layering I do.

Now granted this isn't ground breaking. I am sure many many potters already do this. But I had never done it and never thought to do it. I expect adding this technique will be a nice new tool for me. I will be designing and making some stencils over the next few days. I have about a dozen pots waiting for a bisque fire and will be using stencils on several to test this out with my glazes.