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Everything posted by GEP

  1. I have an extra day off this week, so I am exploring some of the ideas that have been rattling around in my head. If possible I like to introduce new designs at my open studio in december, which means I need to start figuring them out now. Edit: ....aaaand now that I’ve studied this photo a bit, I’m going to erase the “7” on the brown one, and try to put it in the right place.
  2. Yes, your walls are too thin for a pot that size to support its own weight. When I throw a multi-part pot, the two parts are not equal size. I try to achieve 2/3 to 3/4 of the pot's height with the bottom piece. The top piece is just the last 1/4 to 1/3 of the height. So maybe 10 lb bottom and 3 lb top. I also throw and shape the top part with more water than I usually use. I don't want to create too much drag and torque, knowing there is a weak spot at the connection point.
  3. GEP

    Cone 6 Red Stoneware Recipe

    Are you dead set on making your own clay? Or would you be interested in a commercially made clay? Years ago I used a clay called 308 Brooklyn Red made by Standard. It’s quite an intense red/orange at cone 6. https://www.clayworkssupplies.com/product/308-standard-brooklyn-red/
  4. GEP

    Hannahs Blue Fake Ash Glaze

    I’ll take your word for it. I admittedly do not have much experience with blue glazes. @Eastwood Pottery could you possibly have mis-measured the cobalt oxide? Oxide is super-concentrated, far more than cobalt carb. The oxide is often a component in black stains. A small measuring mistake can make a big difference.
  5. GEP

    Hannahs Blue Fake Ash Glaze

    The recipe in Neil’s link notes that they used a local red clay instead of redart. I would still recommend to OP to replace the redart with something lighter.
  6. GEP

    Hannahs Blue Fake Ash Glaze

    I agree with curt. That much redart will make any glaze brown.
  7. GEP

    How To Improve?

    I recommend that abject beginners should start with a class. Having nine classmates who are all dealing with similar questions and isues can multiply your learning by a lot. And it also gives you perspective on how quickly you should expect yourself to progress. But I also thnk in person classes come in a wide range of quality. Many of them are just supervised open studios, where the students are on their own unless they ask for instruction. Which means the student needs to initiate meaningful questions, which is not really an effective way to teach. Lots of excellent teachers out there too, just saying that an in-person class doesn’t automatically mean quality.. If a good teacher is providing specific and meaningful instruction, and a framework for learning, this is more important than whether it is delivered in person or not.
  8. A lot of my greenware needs to be smoothed out. I’m doing a combination of @neilestrick and @Benzine ‘s suggestions. I wear a respirator, buff with a scotch brite pad, then pick up the loose dust with a big damp sponge. I do this over my slop bucket, some of the loose dust falls there. Sometimes the damp sponge cannot reach the loose dust, like when it’s in the recesses of a sgrafitto carved piece. In that case I’ll use a big dry paintbrush to gently move the dust out of the recesses, then pick it up with the damp sponge.
  9. Hi JMWP, I agree with @JohnnyK . I am an experienced potter who has done oodles of wholesale work, and even I would turn it down. Those pots are large and complex, full of potential to fail while drying. Plus, if the first sets are accepted and taken to the trade show, you would have no control over the production demands after that. It's the type of situation that can easily become a nightmare for a one-person pottery shop. If you are getting into production work, I can't emphasize enough how important it is to understand your production capabilities in realistic terms, and maintain control of your time. 40 tea cups by December is a much more sensible deal. Stick to those types of opportunities. The buyer also sounds like they don't quite understand the process of handmade pottery. That's another reason to say "no thanks." I wouldn't let someone sell my time if they don't understand what I do.
  10. GEP

    Breakage location

    It’s possible, can we see how much the thickness varies? This plus the possible rapid cooling might be combining to cause the cracks. This next one is just a hypothesis, but the hole in the bottom might be contributing to the problem too. For a large pot, the bottom holds the walls in place while the whole pot shrinks. In your case, the edges around your hole might be getting caught on the kiln shelf. Therefore warping rather than shrinking comfortably, and causing stress in the walls. You might consider firing future sinks on a waster cookie?
  11. GEP

    Breakage location

    Does the sink that cracked have an area of extra thickness? Either in the middle area, or around the rim? Knock it with a hammer to break it all the way in half, and look at the cross section.
  12. Please provide your firing temperature, and also whether you are firing oxidation or reduction. There are plenty of food safe green glazes. There’s another aspect of learning here, which is to never take commercial orders for pots you don’t know how to make yet. It might take a while before you work out all the technical details, and the final product might not be what the customer had in mind. There are too many variables in ceramics to agree on details that were only discussed verbally, without an actual sample in hand. The word “green” alone can mean so many things!
  13. All questions/discussions related to the new forum software have been moved to this section of the forum, Forum FAQ & Help Topics. @Joseph F made a terrific tutorial on the subject of Activity Streams. We moved it into this section for easy access. If you have continued questions or requests regarding the new forum, we are listening! You can ask questions by adding comments to this thread, or any other thread in this section on various forum-related subjects. Or, if you have a brand new question, you can start a new thread. We have a running list of all requests that have been made. We are working on them behind the scenes. Please be patient, we are learning a new software ourselves. Once we determine if your request can or can't be made, we will let you know.
  14. You did a great job! Yes, you learned the hard way what it’s like to be next to the music stage. Next time you can request a quieter spot.
  15. GEP

    Brand new to pottery

    Every wheel thrower needs to teach themselves their own techniques to a large extent. However, you will save yourself a lot of time and lower your learning curve if you have someone teach you some basics. Such as, how to position and brace your body, arms, and hands. How to center. Basic knowledge of different claybodies. Basic tool knowledge. Beyond that you can personalize your approach as much as you want.
  16. I have a ware cart that is very similar, made by Laguna. https://www.axner.com/laguna-warecart.aspx
  17. I've never seen your work, so I'm just taking a stab here. This is what you should be focusing on, rather than trying different business models. You recently tried to enter the wholesale market, and it didn't pan out for you. Those buyers are experts and you should trust the feedback you got. Which is that your pots do not meet their standards. Maybe you should invest in some honest and expert feedback on the appeal value of your work. @DirtRoads does consulting on this. Or you could take @shawnhar's brave example and post your work here so your forum friends can pick it apart.
  18. There is a big wholesale-retail show in my region. I still do the retail part, but haven't done wholesale for a few years. My former wholesale buyers will visit me in my retail booth (hoping I will change my mind). They are depressed by what they see in the wholesale show. They can't find new artists because the new ones are charging too much for work that isn't sellable anyways. There are a lot of naive voices out there telling young artists to overprice their work. And not enough voices telling them to figure out the real market value, or if it's marketable at all. And for some of them, the fact that they cannot produce their work fast enough for wholesaling makes them price their work higher! NO! That doesn't mean your work is worth more. For anyone who is starting out, I think the most common mistake is to think they can leap frog to the top. Anyone who is at the top knows it didn't happen that way. It was a slow climb up a mountain, one step at a time.
  19. @Stephen, don't forget that @DirtRoads had many years of experience running successful retail operations before she opened her successful pottery retail store. It's another one of those things that takes years to learn the ropes. It's not automatically a "better alternative" to fairs. Dirtroads runs her business on private property where the local regulations allow her to do so. Most retail shop owners need to sign a commercial lease, which is far more expensive than art fair booth fees. You will probably need to sell a lot more pots before you break even. I know a potter near me who was doing well at art fairs, but opened a brick and mortar gallery in order to stabilize his income and lessen the labor. He closed the gallery after about a year. It turned out to be more work, and less profitable. He's back to doing shows only, and doing great.
  20. A 30 lb dumbbell on each leg sounds like a good plan. Good luck and enjoy yourself! The first show I did by myself was a wine festival. There were lots of people, spending money on wine not art. I did not even own a canopy yet. It rained some and the venue was muddy. The pots got wet but they were fine. I net profited $350 and was very proud of myself. Based on what I know now, I am aware that I knew nothing then, and it turned out ok. Trust yourself.
  21. What’s the weather forecast for Saturday? And what are your plans for weighting down your canopy legs?
  22. GEP

    Send me to the store

    If you are firing to cone 6, here’s a reliable base recipe for making glossy glazes. Glossy Base 23 EPK 29 Silica 46 Gerstley Borate 2 Soda Ash Only four ingredients, all of which will come in handy for other recipes. Melts reliably from cone 5 to 7, and has a very durable finish. Slightly runny which I like, but don’t apply too thick. You can add colorants or opacifiers as you wish. Copper carb for green, cobalt carb for blue, mason stains, tin oxide for opacity, etc.
  23. I am currently going through the process of Konmari (https://www.amazon.com/Life-Changing-Magic-Tidying-Decluttering-Organizing/dp/1607747308) in my house. This means I have recently thrown out and donated many boxes of pottery from my kitchen. Most of the departed pots were purchased many years ago, before I understood my tastes and values. My pottery cupboard is half-empty, and only contains things I love. I have room to acquire more, but I have also gained the insight to know what I should buy and shouldn’t buy. Therefore, I don’t want others to give me pottery. I want to choose it myself.

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