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Pres

Qotw: Participants Question Pool For Future Qotw's

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Here's one:   There are some posts in the archives about using coffee grounds for texture or glaze effects, and some old Clay Art posts about using everything from crushed walnuts to granite dust.  What kinds of organics have you used recently? Did it “work” or not so much?  Please specify if fired by electric, gas, wood, or raku, in oxidation or reduction.

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Suggestion:

Is it worth it? 

Several threads recently have asked is it worth...........

Be good to see a discussion in it's own thread on the general pros and cons of fixing, restoring, recovering, making your own. 

So many things to consider: time, cost, environment......

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I'm curious about how you keep kiln logs. Do you always enter what you do? Do you use a form? Have you tried to follow other's logs? Seen any unusual notations?

My favorite odd notation on Zeiner's logs looks like (P**p emoji), radiating aroma. When I asked what it meant he said "Reduce the dogs**t out of it." That was for the little old updraft -maybe a Denver? - at the Pottery Shack, Laguna. Flames 6" out the peepholes. That became our shorthand for Hard R. Wow! Zeiner's invented that emoji in the '70's!!

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Have you ever inadvertently created something totally embarrassing , and you didn't see what was wrong with it until someone pointed it out? 

When the tv show 'everybody loves raymond' had the episode where ray's mother sculpted a 'well known female body part' and took it to an art show without realizing what it looked like, I felt redeemed for my obviously twisted inner mind. I once did a large semi-abstract painting of a shape that seemed exciting and dynamic only to have it pointed out to me that it strongly resembled something I can't mention directly but it shares it's name with a kind of whale. Mortified, the painting and all it's hard work were never seen again. 

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Here's one: tell us about your best handmade/homemade tools. A member just posted about having made a black walnut throwing stick. I felt immediate envy! I did make my own chattering tool at a NH Potters' Guild demo, and that was a blast. It is my only self-made tool so far and I treasure it--it works great--I did a good job with it.  Would love to see some pics-homemade brushes, wood tools, metal tools, whatever. 

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There's an emerging discussion on another thread (re: craft/art) that is looking at the value of, or lack of value of, or even the detrimental impact of, schooling (college/training).  As someone who earned a degree in fine art (ceramics) at an esteemed art school (while on welfare and struggling mightily as a single parent & who was 20 years older than the other students) I must say how extremely enriching, valuable, freeing, and supportive of my creative expression and drive, the experience was. I have carried and used the benefits of that excellent education throughout all aspects of my life, not just in art interactions, but in ctitical thinking, world-view, career, understanding people and cultures, and many other areas of functioning. To me, formal training-- from competant, knowledgible & skilled instructors--is invaluable and can only enhance  one's creative expression and appreciation of crafts & art. What do others think--is formal education/training in ceramics (or any form of art ) stifling/useless/a negative or enriching/useful/a positive?

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We read John Barth's short story "Lost in the Funhouse" in undergrad English (literature concentration); when/if one has seen and understood how the funhouse works, one can't very well go back to and have the first time through experience again. The concept might go somewhar near "knowledge is suffering" - suffer to get it, suffer because of it, and then suffer some more. Is it worth it? Uuuhm, o'course't!!

Whal, writing as art or not art might be easier to agree on that ceramic work ...or is it?

Any road, formal education/training (that isn't crap) is worth it, imo, howeber, you gonna suffer, an' one can't go back neither.

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What is your favorite glaze effect? No matter how intricate or simple your piece is  I feel that it is the glaze that makes it what it is. As such I am continually experimenting with various effects and getting a good response to what I am producing whether it is a bowl or horsehair Raku pot. What's in your bag of tricks?

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I am a firm believer that no matter how you were taught or got instruction that you develop a personal throwing style, which includes doing things that you know you aren't supposed to do.  Myself, I throw counter clockwise but use my right hand inside the form and lift with my left hand on the outside.  I've tried throwing clockwise and I've also tried switching my hands but something about throwing backwards feels natural to me.  So what is your bad habit that is now just your style?

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Does your wheel turn clockwise?

I threw exactly as you do but with the wheel still  turningcounterclock wise. I think because I do lots of practical stuff l.handed.

A friend insisted I should persist doing as others do as the clay was coming at me...her words.... prob ruined my career....didn' know I could get a wheel to accommodate my  hand position.

Another said sit at the other end. Now I know that person was fooling with my brain

Being nearly 3 score years and 10 maybe I'll try again    right side of body worn out, nothing to lose.  .

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3 hours ago, Babs said:

Does your wheel turn clockwise?

I threw exactly as you do but with the wheel still  turningcounterclock wise. I think because I do lots of practical stuff l.handed.

A friend insisted I should persist doing as others do as the clay was coming at me...her words.... prob ruined my career....didn' know I could get a wheel to accommodate my  hand position.

Another said sit at the other end. Now I know that person was fooling with my brain

Being nearly 3 score years and 10 maybe I'll try again    right side of body worn out, nothing to lose.  .

My wheel can go clockwise, but it also doesn't feel right.  I guess I just adapted to doing it the wrong way and now everything else feels wrong.  Hasn't gotten in the way of much, just wonder how much quicker I would have progressed doing things the right way.

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Could be that you spend some time at the beginning of a work day throwing on the other side.

A  former moderator here had a  set of throwing lessons which started with throwing a number of cylinders with set weight etc .

I start my day by throwing s number of cylinders which are smahed....gets the feel of the clay of the day and my brain focussed on the job not remaining in the day's trivia...

Because I am ambidextrous I would focus on learning left hand actions  from time to time so I was able to help or demo for those sinister students.

Amazing no. of folk on this forum are lefties...

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I'm right handed, so I think that makes me double weird?  Dunno, ended up working.  I usually start off throwing a cylinder as high and thin as I can get it to set the mood, don't wanna go in on a big hunk of clay cold!

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Do a few "normally"!

How long did it take to learn to throw?

Well the other way will be quicker because you bring along the feel of the clay, and the basic technique and positioning  which you had to learn first time around......speed of wheel and so on

Do you centre on the normal side...just trying to work out how weird things Are??

Doing it both ways would certainly even up the wear and tear on the body.

Maybe I'll go back to my natural side ...

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In response to Pres's question, my classes in a continuing care retirement community (CCRC)  expose me to all kinds of physical and mental disabilities.  In 27 years I've gained much insight into working with clay and physical impairments.  My students have issues with vision, strength, mobility, memory,  and concentration.  One of my greatest joys is finding a way to "get the job done."  We've created what Pres called "work arounds" to finish their projects. 

My personal limitations so far is that I no longer can lift a 50 pound box of clay and have to move only 25 pounds at a time.   DME

 

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My suggestion for a question of the week would be do you have any ceramics trivia that isn’t common knowledge? 

I make quite a few Lazy Susan’s every year and inevitably get comments from women named Susan. I spent some time today looking up the origin of the name, turns out it wasn’t named after a lazy woman named Susan after all.

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1 hour ago, Min said:

My suggestion for a question of the week would be do you have any ceramics trivia that isn’t common knowledge? 

I make quite a few Lazy Susan’s every year and inevitably get comments from women named Susan. I spent some time today looking up the origin of the name, turns out it wasn’t named after a lazy woman named Susan after all.

Is it bastardization of a French phrase or something?

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3 hours ago, liambesaw said:

Is it bastardization of a French phrase or something?

What makes the most sense of everything I read is it was a marketing move. Playing off words that use names in a generic way, like “peeping Tom” or “Jim-dandy” “Jolly Roger” etc. The “z” sound in lazy with the first “s” in susan just was pleasing to the ear of a marketing person. 

Seems the term was first published in a Vanity Fair advertisement for a “Revolving Server or Lazy Susan” in 1917. It was described as “An impossibly low wage for a good servant and the cleverest waitress in the world.”

From what I read they have been around since the 1700’s, when they were called whirling domestics or dumbwaiters.They were silent waiters hence the word “dumb”. Landowners who couldn’t afford enough servants used them to help with the serving. (this term went on to become the small freight elevator by that name) I spent way too much time reading about them today, got to the point where I felt I was going around in circles. ;)

 

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42 minutes ago, Min said:

What makes the most sense of everything I read is it was a marketing move. Playing off words that use names in a generic way, like “peeping Tom” or “Jim-dandy” “Jolly Roger” etc. The “z” sound in lazy with the first “s” in susan just was pleasing to the ear of a marketing person. 

Seems the term was first published in a Vanity Fair advertisement for a “Revolving Server or Lazy Susan” in 1917. It was described as “An impossibly low wage for a good servant and the cleverest waitress in the world.”

From what I read they have been around since the 1700’s, when they were called whirling domestics or dumbwaiters.They were silent waiters hence the word “dumb”. Landowners who couldn’t afford enough servants used them to help with the serving. (this term went on to become the small freight elevator by that name) I spent way too much time reading about them today, got to the point where I felt I was going around in circles. ;)

 

Interesting!  Thank you! 

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While the chemistry of pottery always interests me: I always enjoy the back story. For me it was Williamsburg, Va. 2007. I was in a high end antique store admiring a Dresden vase. On the next table was a large vase with this brilliant glaze ( rest of the story later).

When, where, what, or who influenced you to begin your journey into pottery? 

If you care to share: what was it exactly about pottery that drew your interest?

t

Edited by glazenerd
Rephrased question

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Listening to Min and others talk about the plate design for someone with a physical impairment brought to mind this question:

How does your process involve object design before the fact, whether planning a new design simply for the novelty of it or creating innovative designs that provide solutions to practical issues or uncommonly met needs?

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