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About GEP

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    Moderator / full time potter ^6 stoneware

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  • Location
    Silver Spring, MD
  • Interests
    biking, jogging, cooking and eating, veggie gardening, baseball (Orioles)

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  1. @Biglou13 How dry is the clay? For me, one cup of water and 24-48 hours works for clay that is moist but on the stiff side. When I have a really hard block of clay, it takes up to two cups of water, and up to a week in the bucket.
  2. Are these ^6 wadding?

    @neilestrick is right about the wires bending. You can see it in my photo, the difference between the used and unused stilts. I would take needlenose pliers and straighten them before use. And I expect they have a lifespan, use them a finite number of times, then toss. Like I said, I lost interest in these because it's a fussy process. But I think it's possible for these to fit somebody else's work.
  3. Spent today packing online orders for shipping. Ow, my back.

    1. Mark C.

      Mark C.

      I hope I'm done with that part yesterday.

      Just when I think I'm done with packing another contact happens.

    2. GEP


      And now the anxious part begins... hoping the pots will arrive safely. Arrghhh. 

  4. Up until recent years, my journey has been more mental than geographical. To me it has been about self-determination. I was not raised to pursue a creative career. As a kid I was a fairly typical STEM nerd, and just accepted that I would pursue engineering or medicine. Luckily I also had great art teachers in middle school and high school who sparked my interest in doing something else. (I am still friends with my middle school art teacher, who was a very young teacher back then, so our ages are not that different. She is one of those people slowly populating her kitchen with nothing but my pots.) It was tough for my parents when I announced I would be a design major. They were terrified of the "starving artist" stereotype. But in college I also found professors and classmates who didn't think I was doing anything strange. Two worlds. It took a couple of decades but my parents aren't worried about me anymore, and I think they are actually proud. I did not have to take any math or science in college, due to my AP exam scores. I thought my STEM days were behind me. Little did I know, I would soon become obsessed with pottery, and now all of my nerdy training in high school has been put to good use. Well, I can't say I've ever encountered any calculus in the pottery studio. But there's plenty of algebra and geometry, plus chemistry and physics. I've learned that these things that I found so uninspiring in high school are interesting subjects after all! Now that I see their practical applications. And as hard as I tried to reject them, these things are part of who I am too, inherited from my family, and I'm lucky for that. My favorite part of the journey is self-employment. Trying to balance my creative values wih financial responsibility and capitalism. It's a multi-dimensional puzzle that has made my life interesting every day. I treasure this the most. In recent years, now that I am a full-time festival artist, my journey has become geographical too. I love road-tripping to far away shows. I've now gone as far as Boston and Chicago. I've learned that any city or town with a quality art festival is also a fun place to visit. The new city I'm hoping to visit in 2018 is Raleigh. Fingers crossed that there will be a weekend full of vinegar-based BBQ sauces in my near future.
  5. Are these ^6 wadding?

    These are the ones I have. As I recall, this small pack of small stilts was not expensive. I only used them with small trinket-type pots. I think they would work for pendants. If you want to fire something larger, you could arrange 3 or 6 of these under one pot. One note: sometimes they will be stuck to your pot after the glaze fire, but a soft whack will get them off.
  6. Are these ^6 wadding?

    I have some commercially made stilts for cone 6. They are little stands made from kiln post material, topped with tiny metal spikes. Only the spikes touch the pot, and leave behind little pinholes in the glaze. It was fun to make some pots that are glazed across the bottom, but I lost interest because it takes longer to glaze the pots and load them into a kiln. It's something that I wouldn't mind doing for a single pot here and there, but a whole kiln full of pots would take way too long!
  7. Can now report that I've had my best ever holiday season too. I agree, I see it as a trend to some degree. It goes around in cycles. Right now there is a desire for things that are more human than electronic. Things that become more valuable to you over time, rather than tossed when the next upgraded version is released. So let's all harvest our nuts while the cycle is high!
  8. Hey everybody ... friendly reminder time ... it's ok to make a quick joke about US pharmaceuticals. But please don't turn this into a discussion about the cost of pharmaceuticals or healthcare in the US, which is very much a political subject now. Let's talk ceramics. Thank you!
  9. Slab Roller - Looking for advice

    We had a recent thread about small and portable slab rollers. Lots of advice and opinions here:
  10. I use this box that is labelled as waterproof. There is a foam gasket under the lid, and latches that hold the lid tight. Similar to a refrigerator, I suppose. It holds about 100lbs of clay. I got it at The Container Store but I have also seen them at Staples and Home Depot.
  11. Way to go @Roberta12! You had your priorities right. If there are customers in front of you, you need to be present for them, rather than doing something administrative like replacing all of your price tags. Just take all the information you received and use it to plan the next event.
  12. @Sputty, thank you for the example. @LeeU I hope can you can see how deleting your comment can affect other people. It's a disruptive experience for the other people in the conversation. And it can make a thread look nonsensical to a future forum visitor. So now we are asking everyone to make a commitment to their words before hitting the submit button.
  13. Hi everyone, I sent a PM to Stephen this afternoon, to explain the change in the deleting/editing functions of the forum. I offered to delete his post so he could post it again in a new thread. I hadn't heard back from him by the time I went out for dinner. When I got home I saw Stephen's reply to me, plus saw that Mark asked the same question and Joseph chimed in too. Therefore I'm going to leave this all here, since other members might have the same question. The forum settings were changed a few months ago, and now you can no longer delete your comments. You can still edit your comments, however edited comments are flagged as "edited." You can edit a comment and remove all of its content, which is similar to deleting, but a shell of the comment will remain, flagged as edited. This way, anyone who reads the thread in the future will be able to see that a comment was removed. We decided that it is important to preserve conversations here as they organically happened. People come to this forum everyday, and read threads that are years old. One of the objectives of this forum is the "archive" aspect of things. So as much as possible we want the words to be preserved. There are situations where it is perfectly reasonable to delete your comment. Such as in this example, where Stephen wanted to delete a comment so he could post it as a new thread. In those situations, you can ask a mod to delete your comment.
  14. I know this too late to help @Achilles, but for anyone else who is having the same problem, I've had good success with a Kemper SMS rubbing stone. Lots of clay suppliers sell them. I use it for both liquid cold wax and hot melted soy wax. First I scrape off as much wax as possible with a metal tool, then I rub the spot with the rubbing stone. I keep going until I've removed a layer or two of clay as well. Sometimes a bare spot will still appear after dipping the pot in glaze, but it's usually small enough to dab glaze over it with a small brush.
  15. Wood firing conversations?

    The longest wood-firings I've done were about 20 hours long. This kiln was fired with pallet wood, which burns hot and fast, but doesn't produce much ash. We would use bagged bark mulch from the hardware store to create more ash. At certain times in the firings, we would pile mulch onto the planks before tossing them in the kiln. Bark ash is the best ash IMO. It melts into a clear green crackle glaze. Beautiful when it pools in the bottom of a cup or bowl.

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