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LeeU

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Everything posted by LeeU

  1. I'm very happy with how my Snowflakes series came out. Last year I did ornaments in porcelain, this year made stoneware candy dishes & small tray-like pieces. I'm narrowing down which images (i.e. stamps) to use and which glazes look best. My favorite combination: Coyote's Crystal Forest and Laguna's slow cool Ivory Crystal (bottom pic). I also like Coyote's Turquoise Matte w/clear (top pic). The feedback I'm getting tells me I'm heading in the right direction and I've decided to target holidays & seasons next year. I don't want to do craft fairs, so I am cultivating a relationship with a bead artist who just "loves" doing these shows (wha???) and may be willing to set me up at the crack of dawn for a modest fee, and I'll show up a bit later. I would love to see some other holiday/theme pieces you've had success with, re: good sellers. To me, seasonals are a different product than generic "anytime/year-round" items that are not visually tied to something like, for example, Valentine's Day. I assume they may take a different marketing approach?? Or not?? Any tips??? Thanks. (I know the above color is off-just a quickee reference pic on the fly).
  2. Body & glazes are cone 5. The "puzzle piece" looking imprints on the bottom one are partially impressed cookie cutter designs. I like the idea of a changing annual shape or theme, and something light/small enough to tie onto a gift. (Yes-I made Mr. Turtle.)
  3. LeeU

    Studio Photography

    I love the look, and that the ground is fabric. It's a tidge dark for my personal taste, but I think the gray-on-gray is quite effective and pleasing. I am beginning to "get it" that "less is more", in terms of distilling and simplifying my form and color decisions. I just bought a very servicable camera (Sony alpha6000) w/ 2 lenses-normal & long). Now I have to learn it's features & settings, which is hard for me---I forget how to get to the settings I want (minior brain issues-just have to be patient w/myself, but it is a PITA). Anyway, the point is that by taking a page from Mea's book on simplicity (which is paradoxicaly a bit complex at the same time) I can probably come up with a lighting & background set-up that doesn't need much fiddling with to get consistency in my product shots.
  4. LeeU

    posting a status update

    Hit the drop down arrow next to your name on the upper right by the avatar. Then hit Profile; under Activity and post your update in "add public message" to your own feed. Theoretically that should do it. :)
  5. Well, if you must know, I was filling a humidifier container from my utility sink, forgot to close the top off, tripped over my own feet, and--to keep myself from tipping over--quickly set the thing down on the clear edge of the glazing table so I could free my hand to catch my balance, where the unit wobbled over and crashed into the greenware, and then spilled water just to add insult to injury. That is the sad story. Oh well, no handmade Christmas candy dish for Aunt Ruthie.
  6. LeeU

    Paul Soldner Workshop

    The "docuphotos" are awesome! The glimpse into Soldner at work is way cool--must have been a great experience.
  7. LeeU

    cracks in cake plates

    Are these cake stands? Looks rather thick--is there a pedestal under there?
  8. Glazing for this weekend firing. Opps.
  9. Happy happy. Got the last of my backlogged stock inventoried and properly stored (means I can find it easily).  Only 6 months past my intended time frame-oh well, forward movement is forward movement and I'm not in a race, so I'll take it and just say thank you. :lol:  

    20181204_115543.jpg

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  10. LeeU

    Ceramic coat hook

    I make thick and thicker and really thick stuff with porcelain, unglazed or clear glazed mostly, and even the thin curly edges I sometimes favor on things hold up very well (mine is ^6 Cool Ice). In fact, I think I just stole your idea!!
  11. Maybe search SPOOZE on this forum (or Google it) and try it. I use Peggy Herr's original recipe and it has always worked for me.
  12. LeeU

    Studio Photography

    Lovely mug! I use the smartphone camera, which is pretty decent actually, for my reference shots for my inventory spreadsheet. One thing I am excited about re: a larger camera is I'm getting the contemporary equivalent of a wired cable release-I have minor tremors and that, with the tripod of course, will make my life a lot easier. I don't know why "Deleted" is "done" but I'm glad he or she started a topic on studio photography.
  13. I have no idea if this is the best forum for this topic or if it belongs in education (??) I am interested in other people's practical experiences and recommendations for strengthening a non-profit group of potters that appears to be declining in "relevance" . The predictable culprits are an embedded culture that resists change, a board that is too small to be effective (as is--that may change if it expands a bit), and a small membership base where many only join to be in an exhibit or access a kiln firing. Members who volunteer to do specific tasks frequently lack follow-through, and workshops have been cancelled due to lack of response. Simply getting a functional web site up took years of talking; it was finally done just last year (!) with less than 3 months of work. This may be the last go-round where a few dedicated people are still invested and motivated to try to turn it around. Standard development practices are already well-known and new leadership is likely to implement the basics over the next year. I am interested in hearing about any especially unique or creative approaches that may enhance the "Development 101" approach. Of special interest are strategies that might better engage and motivate the existing member base as well as attract new members and get their "buy-in" early on. Thanks in advance!
  14. It seemed to me that as soon as I pressed for board expansion to include members-at-large, which is "optional" but very desirable in developing a board and strengthening an organization to engage members more, the interest seemed to cool off. I think it probably is done-maybe it'll keep limping along while a few make a valient effort to resurrect, but I am cynical more than optimistic in terms of this guild attaining more relevance within the larger ceramics community. . Neil found the right word-- "clubhouse" mentality. If the lack of accountability, initiated by the officers/board, doesn't change, it will remain primarily a nice group of potters who enjoy the bring-a-dish after the meeting. I asked several times if anyone was a member of the CAD forums? --uh, never heard of it. How about the Potters Attic? (discussing having a way to do classifieds). Uh, never heard of it. So.........we''ll see.
  15. So...."nonroyal" (been noodling dictionaries) seems to be a bit more than just "not a royal". Has something to do with British dukes & socioeconomic/political stuff back in the day. I can see that if taken as a personal challenge, designing pieces in clay using random words as the core could be a bit of fun. One of my favorite artists-not a clay person-is Jenny Holzer, the mistress of word usage in art! Good to know about the Google Drive limitation-I've seen the "mystery msg." before and just ran in the opposite direction.
  16. LeeU

    removing e6000?

    I gotta chuckle. I had an implant come out, post intact, crown intact. Didn't have a dentist-mine moved to Vermont a few years ago and I never replaced him So when the tooth came out I went to the nearest one; they wanted a forced consult plus a "starts at" fee that together would be a minimum of about $300. I am a poor person! So I went to my trusty 36000 and it lasted for well over 2 months w/just a couple of re-dos, until I could find a guy who didn't push the consult, the cleaning, the panaramas, the lecture to floss daily or anything else. He looked in my mouth, poked around a little, then recemented the thing for $150. He explained why the e6000 wouldn't do the trick (which I knew) and how the dental cement worked, and was really nice about it. Now I'm his new patient. I think just for fun the next time I'll bring in my lower partial wrapped in some duct tape and see how that goes.
  17. Just FYI--I hit the link and there was an error message popping up saying there is a problem with the link and suggesting alternatives. Might be just fine-I'm not sophisticated enough to know-so I never click further "alternatives" for downloads with things like that. Sounds like an interesting idea, though. Choosing a random dictionary word as a fire starter is kinda cool. Thanks. Welcome to the forums.
  18. LeeU

    Instagram

    I've been told I "must" do Instagram, and everything else, all bundled up as "fusion marketing". Nope-nada-ain't doin' it. Rabbit holes and worm holes, all of it. My interior self is already overloaded with curlycues and tangles, thank you very much. Besides, to do it right without hiring pricey services can become another P/T job, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise! (Unless it's someone here who has it nailed and is willing to share LOL).
  19. @ Liam--I like the docent idea. ..thanks. I am hoping that a short & simple Survey Monkey will do good things-I know how to design engaging/valid ones & how to leverage the results. The time and travel issue is significant, plus the guild has clustered meetings in one area of the state and to move them around a bit, especially to engage the more northern tiers. (An aside-my daughter, an artist, was relocated from VA to Wanatchee and now to Kennewick (hubby's job) and she has SAD+anxiety, so--not caring for the weather so much right now.) @Arnold-unfortunately, enthusiasm/motivation don't go very far if those same people are just not able to follow through timely with essential procedures. It is fixable, probably, if the willingness is there and emerges with action attached. I have seen some sparks of interest lately from a few newer people--hope we can tap them. @GEP-There are 2 year terms-chair, vice chair, secr'y & treas. At this time the board is only 4 people. One of the chair/VC slots is opening up. Re: lots of people joining right before a major event--the problem is that the sudden inflation of census messes up the quorum/voting the way the bylaws are currently written. The guild is often violation of their own procedures, and there is no mechanism for members to vote who are not present at the (poorly attended) physical meetings or live out of state. So, after an influx, there is never a legitimate quorum, which gets ignored. I've provided a draft for bylaws revision with discussion points, and recommended including e-mail for voting, as well as requiring that the issues to be voted on be sent out, with proper descriptive text and a form for voting, to all members-- not just quickly raised and verbally discussed in the meeting and then voted on with a show of hands by a small percent of members. @Hulk "All about who and how they work together." Yep--therein lies the problem...and hopefully the solution! @ Stephen-most of the points in your 1st paragraph are well in place & it should not be hard to leverage for more effective marketing. I really like your 2nd paragraph suggestion-- that is how it is done in many other places, and I see no reason not to do it here. The kiln is in a beautiful location and the quality of work is quite high. @ Gabby--yes--board development is the key. I hope to be appointed to the board. I just turned down an officer nomination, because I want a seat as a member-at-large , to afford me the autonomy I would need to help guide effectively. @Pres--"Tough to bring back a failing guild." John B. warned me about this 2 years ago! There are up to 6 board seats that may be filled by members, appointed by the chair, and not a single member has been selected in at least the last 4 years. They're getting 1 more year out of me, then if it's not happening, I'm finally/really "letting it go". Appreciate all the input.
  20. LeeU

    Studio Photography

    I'm not shooting with a light box--too confining for me. Have 2 table light stands, some background material, tripod, a decent eye for style & composition, and an "in" with a world-class expert reachable by phone when cell transmission is cooperating (between the NH lakes region and the California high desert, which means frequently dropped). Can't wait to fire up my new camera & check out what I do & don't remember from my manual 35mm Pentax days. I expect to love learning digital processes..the hardest part is for me not to go down the rabbit hole that you guys inhabit, which makes my brain wrinkle. The more auto settings I can fine tune to work for my set up the happier I will be. I understand that the a6000 will let me use my cell phone kinda like a cable release--yee haw! My point of view re: photography is highly flexible, re: what's in the shot and how the whole comes across. I don't wnat all my pics to be like perfect catalogue shots; I prefer they convey some vibe either within or external to the piece. About the only editing I do is maybe straightening the horizon line (my eye is consistently off by 1 degree) or aligning a ng vertical, for visual appeal/stability. Unless I want it cockeyed, of course
  21. LeeU

    removing e6000?

    Once in the rubbery gel state you can complete the removal by picking it off with whatever works. @Fred--thanks for that info.
  22. LeeU

    Oxyprobe Axner vs Bailey

    Sounds like a philosophical question , control being such an existential dilemma or Buddist delight or some such Welcome to the forums.
  23. LeeU

    Differences

    Sorry---you can't vent an indoor kiln by opening a door, using a fan, and hoping the wind is blowing in the right direction. This simple overview is from L&L kilns--you need to get more info so you can vent the kiln to the outside properly, and to assure it's not coming back in. Ask your questions--with more specifics (size of kiln, your firing range etc.) --in the Equipment Use and Repair forum on this site. If searching via the Internet isn't great for you, ask on that forum if there are a few simple books you could get that will cover most of what you'd need to know for how you are working. Here is the link for this https://hotkilns.com/ventilation-essential There is more than what I pasted here, it continues with ventilation Tips. Kilns generate harmful fumes when firing ceramics. Fumes include carbon monoxide, sulfur oxides, hydrogen fluoride and metal vapors (all of which can be very toxic). Install kiln in well-ventilated area. Never operate in an enclosed space such as a closet unless you have good ventilation. Aside from issues of ventilating the fumes from the firing, the heat build up in an enclosed room could present a significant fire hazard. See the INSTALLATION cautions. Severe corrosion can be caused by kiln fumes, salt air or other environmental conditions. Good venting can minimize these problems. Ventilation must be to the outside. Be careful not to locate the outlet of the vent near an open window (so that it could get sucked back into the building).
  24. LeeU

    Studio Photography

    Yay me! I just got a fantastic Black Friday deal on a Sony a6000 w/short and long lenses--gives me 16-210. Happy happy. My ex, the photographer, approves, so I know I'm barking up the right tree. Looking forward to doing better product shots, plus I'll get to shoot the birds that I watch every day--and the wild turkeys, the deer, maybe the bear??? Here is my last out of focus cell phone selfie, showing my new best friend. I've got a backlog of items needing web-ready pics-enough to to keep me busy into New Year's.
  25. They can use exactos and tweezers to pull out the newspaper and a long thin sureform to plane down the inside walls a bit if needed. They also might want to consider not firing these (especially with other peoples' work in the kiln) and instead redoing the project after doing some research for better planning and construction from the git-go.
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