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Everything posted by Devany

  1. I use Square and love it. I only do a few shows a year, and my Etsy site accepts Pay Pal, but when I do need to accept credit cards I really like using square. I have found that the fees are not much higher than other services.
  2. Devany

    The Piece or the Glaze?

    Chris is so right. And I also believe that an artist needs to find some glazes that are unique, especially when in shows with other local potters, it is sort of like "Everyone wore the same dress." at some shows. In fact all of our work should strive to be unique and it sounds like Beth has conquered that part by following her insight and making garden and architectural art. I would love to see pictures of some of your garden art Beth. Do you have a website with photos?
  3. OH DEAR! Sorry to hear of your trials and tribulations.That is an awful thing to happen anytime, but just before Christmas is worse yet. I guess in the end, it could have been worse. You could have landed on your head when you fell, or your house could have completely burned down. Hopefully by now all is well.
  4. Devany

    Buying first kiln

    I have never done anything other than high fire. My first kiln is the same kiln I use today. It is a large gas kiln that I bought used. I was in University and Guild programs for 8 years and ^10 was all we did. I fell in love with Southern Ice porcelain... the rest is history. I use other ^10 clays for larger pieces though. I think a small kiln is a great idea for a first kiln. I often wish I had a smaller one to do test tiles etc. but even with that, I would need one that goes to ^10. I really think you need to decide what temps you want to fire to and go with the kiln that works for that clay and glazes. It is nice to have something that works for everything, but if you are starting out small, that is not always possible.
  5. Devany

    Special Orders

    The waterfall came out great. Looks like something that would sell regardless. I take orders, but usually with the 90 day requirement because I have a really large kiln and I fire only when it is full. I think being willing to take commissions is a good thing. I would rather make something that I knew someone really wanted and it is also a deeper connection between the artist and customer. I also charge 50% up front. Also, I take note of what people do order and generally try to include more of them in my stock unless it is just something really customized like the peanut bowl.
  6. I am considering moving to the Charlotte area. I have a large high fire gas kiln, but would like to rent space in a salt kiln. Anyone know of someone in that area that is doing salt firings? I worked in a guild in CA for a few years and fell in love with salt firing. Thanks! I know this is just a shot in the dark.
  7. Thanks! I will check it out. I would go for it if there were no other options and if it was a large kiln.
  8. The Carrboro Arts Center in Carrboro has a clay guild, and they do occassionally rent a kiln from someone in the area to do salt firings - but it's quite expensive IMO, $1000 per firing, so $200 to $250 per person if they can get 4 or 5 people to go in on it, or at least that was what I was told. I don't know how far away Charlotte is, but if you absolutely can't find someone else, and the expense doesn't faze you, that's a possibility. You can google for the Carrboro Arts Center, then go to their pottery classes pages, there's a link there somewhere to the clay guild.
  9. I am going to work on larger pieces this year and try to find/perfect a ^10 blue/green celedon glaze. I also want to work with salt firing again... just have to find a partner in crime for that one.
  10. I contacted John and he got right back to me. Thanks. He does not know anyone, but is checking with some guilds.
  11. Devany


    How did those Tiki Mugs turn out? I would like to see pictures!
  12. Devany


    I am a ceramic artist living in Hawaii. I did ceramics in college and then got involved with life... work, children etc. at age 50 I enrolled in a ceramics program at a college in Chicago, worked there for three years, then moved to the Bay Area where I was in a guild for two years. While there, I got to work in salt firing and it is still my love, though I do not have a salt kiln here in Hawaii. We moved to Hawaii in 2009. I have a studio over looking the sea. I do high fire, mostly porcelain sculpted and hand built work. I do use the extruder often as well. I do miss working in a guild environment, but having my own studio and kiln is great. Getting materials is not so easy. I have to order clay one ton at a time and since there are no ceramics supply stores here, every thing has to be ordered and shipped from the mainland. I am thinking of making a move to North Carolina (near Charlotte) in the upcoming year. So some changes may be in my future.
  13. For me it is these free formed platters that I make. I use porcelain and only about 50 % of them make it through high firing, there is a huge cracking rate even though I dry them very slowly. So, when one comes out perfectly, like this oyster platter I find great joy.
  14. Devany

    Cracking Ceramics

    Cracking is a common problem for flat pieces, usually because the clay was not compressed well. When rolling slabs be sure to go in both directions. It shows up in the glaze firing because that is where most shrinking occurs (vitrification) at the higher temperature. Cracking can show up before that too, especially when a flat piece is not dried evenly. I do not work with low fire, but three days sounds like a very long time. I fire at ^10 and the actual firing time is usually about 8 hours with another 8-10 for cooling, unless you count the candling which is 6 hours before firing. Thanks for the reply. ^^ We've tried placing them direct on the shelves and tried placing them on stands on the shelves, both times they still cracked. I'm afraid for fireing range, this is where my knowledge ends. My mentor who taught me most of the basics only taught me how to load, unload and turn the kiln on, and since she left neither me or the project manager has any other knowledge on the kiln. " We haven't touched the setting since it was first set up pretty much. We make stuff out of terracotta stoneware mostly with some low temperate glaze stuff so the kiln is set to accomidate that as far as I know. I do know the kiln is taking 3 days to complete it's firing, but not sure how much of that is cooling down.
  15. I have a very large gas (propane, we live on an island with no natural gas) kiln that I bought used. It has four burners. I use ^ 10/11 clay and high fire glazes. I have had the kiln about a year and it has gone through 7 glaze firings. I am having issues with the reduction process. All of my previous experience has been in University and Guilds where we were not allowed to fire, so all I could do was buy books and study about firing. I have no problem getting the kiln to ^ 10/11 and everything comes out nicely, but I know that I am not achieving full reduction. In fact every time I close the damper the flames go out completely. I have to open the damper and then relight after waiting a little while. I am not sure how much I need to starve the atmosphere or for how long, nor am I sure if I am actually achieving reduction if I leave the damper open enough for the flames to continue burning. Can anyone here help me with this problem? I am also not sure at which point in the process the reduction should be taking place or for how long. I am trying to do it at the end of the firing process now.
  16. I believe that there is a large difference between inspiration and an attempt to copy. As artists we usually start out inspired by something or someone else's work and are taught by our professors or mentors to do things in certain ways. After all there are only so many ways to make a bowl or a mug. Rarely in the beginning does a student's work come close to replicating the teachers. But if that student never moved beyond that one professor he/she might find his/her work looking more and more like the teacher's. We all have to stretch... and we all have to be willing to learn new ideas as well as to share them. The line is often crossed between sharing and ripping off, but really art is not about competition, it is about creating. That is the part that makes you feel good, not copying or winning. This world is a BIG place and there is plenty of room for art of all kinds. As artists, we want people to respect our work and our ideas. If you are only copying someone else and never moving on to your own style then you cannot even respect yourself, let alone expect people to respect you. However, if you see work that inspires you to create something and you run with it and make it your own you can respect yourself and your work.
  17. Thanks for your suggestions. I am doing mostly porcelain work with the same glazes I have been using for several years. No shinos, no tenmokus, but a few copper reds. Most of what I do is in the green/blue/white realm, so maybe I should not be so concerned with reduction. I am not sure what you mean by soaking, but in glass I remember that meant to hold the temperature for a while. Is that what you mean? I have no problems with pin holing or bloating, but some of my bellied work does form cracks at the stress point in the glaze firing, not the bisque firing. This has always been typical for me in the forms that I do and using porcelain only makes it more exaggerated. The top of the burner ports are about 3" from the kiln floor. The only results I am looking for is deeper reds (they are coming out more orange) and more general depth of color in the turquoise/green range. The reds are nice, but not crucial to me for most of my work. Unfortunately I have a very large kiln, which means I cannot do a separate firing just for the few pieces I do with red on them. I do use an over glaze on many pieces using John Toki's Shibu Ice. It is a semi transparent glaze that has a slight iridescence to it. It does come out much better in full reduction. Thanks again for your help.
  18. Devany

    Pets in the studio

    I have two lovebirds in my studio. I also have a cat that likes to hang out with me sometimes when I am creating. My two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels like to be out there with me, but they tend to get in my way, so I only allow then in there when I am working on sculpture or slab work at a table. My studio has two parts one is half of a 3 car garage. This is where I create and dry ware. The open air part of the studio is in my kiln and glazing area, it has a roof and a wall on two sides, open to the gardens and ocean on the other. I do my spraying, glazing, sanding etc. out there. My kiln is also out there, so no gasses or fumes are in the part of the studio where the animals are. Because we live in Hawaii, the climate is always temperate and I have lots of doors and windows open all of the time. It would be different if things had to be closed up.
  19. Devany

    Great Project Gone Bad...

    I am too late too, but I use nylons (legs from panty hose) on my tubes (cardboard or PVC) but the real clue is to remove them once the clay is leather hard, depending on the climate and if you have a wet room, that could be in several hours or days. Lots of good advice here... the one about the vermiculite filled pillows is really interesting!
  20. Devany

    Great Project Gone Bad...

    Shrinkage is the enemy.
  21. Great advice. Once fired and glazed and shrinkage occurs, then you can test them out.
  22. Five years ago I bought a Brent wheel on eBay and it is a workhorse. Love it. They retain their value though, it was only $150 cheaper than a brand new one. But I did not have to pay for shipping.
  23. Devany

    Tall clay piece

    Looks like a cooking vessel or heater to me.
  24. Devany

    signature stamp use

    I think it would be ok to re-use stamps/cutters if they go through the dishwasher first.

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